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OVERVIEW OF MY WORK


Holocaust Education: I tell about the Holocaust based on my personal experience. My rescue was unusually well documented, and I have accessioned and contributed documents, photographs, drawings, and mementos as well as oral histories to the U.S. Holocaust Memorial Museum, the Jewish Museum of Maryland in Baltimore and others. I have prepared and delivered numerous lectures, arranged exhibits, and recorded oral histories using these materials.


Books: My memoir, aptly named “I Live in a Chickenhouse,” tells how I escaped the Nazis, ultimately by hiding in a chicken coop for 3 years.  Each chapter centers on a drawing I made (or collected) while I lived in the chickenhouse; I tell the story from the viewpoint of the child I was at the time. The childhood drawings and the text that expands it prallel the Diary of Anne Frank, who lived down the street from me before the nazis invaded Holland.


The Dutch-language version of the Chickenhouse story is:  “Ik woon in een kippenhok.”  The German-lanugage version is:  “Ich wohne in einem Huehnerhaus."  I also am preparing a version told from an adult viewpoint, including the history of my parents.  The book’s title, “The Submergers,” uses a term to describe people in hiding. It still needs final editing, which I hope to complete soon.


Videos:  I went to Europe in 1996 to record scenes and witnesses to help tell my survival story visually; this resulted in a documentary, updated and reissued on DVD in 2008, titled “Rediscovering My Childhood.”  The Dutch language version is titled, “Op zoek naar mijn kinderjaren.”


Tracing Art Theft:   The Nazis obstructed Jewish art dealers and plundered their inventory. My parents countered this larceny with considerable success, protecting their art works, and recovering stolen art.  We’re still trying to trace four stolen paintings.  I present this saga in a book titled “A Jewish Art Dealer Faces the Nazis,” which can be obtained free of charge via this website.


Promoting Peace I believe that peace starts at home.  This conviction has led me to get certified as a volunteer mediator for the Baltimore Community Mediation Program.  We use tested procedures to calm down aroused feelings, lay bare the facts behind the disagreement, identify elements in the relationship that need fixing, and draft a contract to implement any agreement that results.  Many cases are referred from the courts, lightening their overburdened calendars.


Jewish Observance:  Jewish history has reached a momentous crossroads, and Judaism needs to adapt to the new millennium or else it will wither.  As a member of the Jewish Renewal movement, I spent the 1997-98 school year at its seminary in Philadelphia and attended study sessions at the Elat Chayyim, the Jewish Renewal Retreat Center in the Catskills. I am interested in introducing chanting, meditation, and kabbalah into Jewish observance.  I work at strengthening bonds among all Jewish denominations so we can meet the future solidly united.


Interfaith Relations:  I am fully as committed to interfaith relations as I am to my own faith.  My book “A Vision of Love” records my journey toward a true interfaith position, and it includes a thorough examination of what has gone wrong between Christians and Jews.  I am completing the final editing and am looking for a publisher.


Educational Highlights: I have a Master's degree in agricultural journalism from the University of Wisconsin (1960) and a Bachelor's degree in agricultural economics from the Ohio State University (1956) plus certificates from many professional and human potential workshops.