Preserve US Government Agency that Monitors Anti-Semitism

March 14th, 2017–
With reports surfacing that the President plans to defund the U.S. State Department’s Office to Monitor and Combat Anti-Semitism, more than 100 Holocaust institutions, scholars, and educators from around the world are calling on government officials not to cut, but to maintain and strengthen the office. These institutions and individuals cite the recent examples of hatred, xenophobia, and racism spreading across the nation and ask the public to call Congressional and Senate offices.

The statement is as follows:

The undersigned Holocaust remembrance organizations, educators, and historians ask you to speak out and take action against hatred.


We are alarmed by reports that the President plans to defund the US State Department’s Office to Monitor and Combat Anti-Semitism, an office that tracks and counteracts anti-Semitism abroad.  Ira Forman, the most recent Special Envoy in charge of that office, was our voice to a world in the throes of xenophobia and racism.  He recently wrote, “Anti-Semitism is not only a Jewish problem; Jew-hatred — like other forms of religious and ethnic prejudice — is a threat to the very foundations of liberal democracies.”


We urge the US government to maintain and strengthen the State Department’s Office to Monitor and Combat Anti-Semitism and to create a new office to address this urgent issue domestically.  The need becomes clearer by the day as hatred, like a tidal wave, sweeps across the nation.  Cemeteries, synagogues, churches and mosques are being desecrated.  Jewish Community Centers and schools are targets of bomb threats and shootings. Swastikas and white supremacist threats appear on walls and on social media.  Now is the time to increase vigilance, not roll it back.


ACT NOW.  Call Your Representatives in Congress and the Senate.

Ask them to preserve the State Department’s Office to Monitor and Combat Anti-Semitism and to create such an office to fight domestic anti-Semitism as well.

Senate:     Congress:


Additional Actions You Can Take

Call your state representatives and ask them to fund educational programs designed to stop hatred and bullying — programs that build character and promote civics. Get involved with your school boards and interfaith groups.  Talk to your neighbors.  Rally in your town to promote tolerance and support victims of anti-Semitism, Islamophobia, racism, sexism and discrimination in all its forms.


This statement is co-authored by members of the Association of Holocaust Organizations, a network dedicated to the advancement of Holocaust education, remembrance and research, and is affirmed by the following institutions and individuals.

Organizational Signatories


Center for the Study of the Holocaust and Genocide
Sonoma State University
Dr. Myrna Goodman, Director
Rohnert Park, CA

Haiti Jewish Refugee Legacy Project
Harriet and Bill Mohr, Founders
Menlo Park, CA

Jewish Partisan Educational Foundation
Elliott Felson, President
San Francisco, CA


The Colorado Holocaust Educators
Todd Hennessy, Director
Denver, CO


Holocaust Child Survivors of Connecticut
Mrs. Agnes Vertes, President
Weston, CT


Holocaust Education Resource Council
Barbara Goldstein, Executive Director
Tallahassee, FL

Holocaust Learning and Education Fund, Inc.
Craig R. Weiner, President
Weston, FL

Holocaust Memorial Resource & Education Center of Florida
Pam Kancher, Executive Director
Maitland, FL


Illinois Holocaust Museum & Education Center
Susan L. Abrams, CEO
Skokie, IL


The Sparks Fly Upward Foundation
Prof. Cathy Lesser Mansfield, Executive Director
Des Moines, IA


Midwest Center for Holocaust Education
Jean Zeldin, Executive Director/CEO
Overland Park, KS


Baltimore Jewish Council
Howard Libit, Executive Director
Baltimore, MD

Jewish Museum of Maryland
Marvin Pinkert, Executive Director
Baltimore, MD


Jewish Community Relations Council of Greater Boston
Jeremy Burton, Executive Director
Boston, MA

Strassler Center for Holocaust and Genocide Studies
Clark University
Dr. Mary Jane Rein, Executive Director
Worcester, MA

Terezin Music Foundation
Kate Gascoigne, Board Member
Boston, MA


Hidden Children and Child Survivors of Michigan
Rene Lichtman, Co-Chair
Detroit, MI


Center for Holocaust and Genocide Education
St. Cloud State University
Dr. Daniel Wildeson, Director
St. Cloud, MN

Tolerance in Motion
Laura Zelle, Director
Minneapolis, MN

World Without Genocide
Mitchell Hamline School of Law
Dr. Ellen J. Kennedy, Executive Director
St. Paul, MN


Holocaust Museum and Learning Center
Jean Cavender, Executive Director
St. Louis, MO


Generations of the Shoah International (GSI)
Esther Finder, Member of the Coordinating Council
Henderson, NV

New Hampshire

Cohen Center for Holocaust and Genocide Studies
Henry Knight, Director
Keene, NH

New Jersey

Center for Holocaust, Human Rights & Genocide Education (CHHANGE)
Brookdale Community College
Dale Daniels, Executive Director
Lincroft, NJ

The Council of Holocaust Educators
Colleen Tambuscio, President
Trenton, NJ

The Herbert and Leonard Littman Families Holocaust Resource Center, Rutgers University
Karen Small, Associate Director
New Brunswick, NJ

Holocaust Council of Greater MetroWest
Barbara Wind, Director
Whippany, NJ

New Jersey Commission on Holocaust Education
Lawrence M. Glaser, Executive Director
Trenton, NJ

New Mexico

Holocaust & Intolerance Museum of New Mexico
Lyn Berner, Administrator
Albuquerque, NM

New York

Anne Frank Center for Mutual Respect
Steven Goldstein, Executive Director
New York, NY

Center for Holocaust Awareness & Information (CHAI)
Jewish Federation of Greater Rochester
Bonnie Abrams, Director
Rochester, NY

Holocaust, Genocide, and Human Rights Project
Jodi Oriel, Director
Rochester, NY

Holocaust, Genocide, and Human Rights Project
Regina Fabbro, Endowed Chair
Rochester, NY 

Holocaust & Human Rights Education Center
Millie Jasper, Executive Director
White Plains, NY 

Holocaust Memorial & Tolerance Center of Nassau County
Steven Markowitz, Chair
Glen Cove, NY

Holocaust Museum & Center for Tolerance and Education
Andrea Winograd, Executive Director
Suffern, NY

Holocaust Resource Center of Buffalo
Mara Koven-Gelman, Executive Director
Buffalo, NY

Museum of Jewish Heritage – A Living Memorial to the Holocaust
Michael S. Glickman, President and CEO
New York, NY

Sousa Mendes Foundation
Dr. Olivia Mattis, President
Huntington, NY

North Carolina

Center for Holocaust, Genocide & Human Rights Studies
University of North Carolina at Charlotte
Prof. John Cox, Director
Charlotte, NC

Center for Judaic, Holocaust and Peace Studies
Appalachian State University
Prof. Thomas Pegelow Kaplan, Director
Boone, NC


The Center for Holocaust and Humanity Education
Sarah Weiss, Executive Director
Cincinnati, OH

Dayton Holocaust Resource Center
Dr. Renate Frydman, Director
Dayton, OH

Ruth Fagerman Markowicz Holocaust Resource Center of Greater Toledo Ohio
Hindea Fagerman, Director
Toledo, OH


Holocaust and Genocide Studies Project
Portland State University
Amanda Smith Byron, Director
Portland, Oregon


Eyes from the Ashes Educational Foundation
Dr. Ann Weiss, Director
Bryn Mawr, PA

National Catholic Center for Holocaust Education
Seton Hill University
Prof. Tim Crain, Director
Greensburg, PA

Philadelphia Center on the Holocaust, Genocide & Human Rights
Dr. Marcia Sachs Littell, President
Merion Station, PA

World Federation of Jewish Child Survivors of the Holocaust and Descendants
Stefanie Seltzer, President
Bala Cynwyd, PA

South Carolina

Columbia Holocaust Education Commission
Dr. Lilly S. Filler, Co-Chair
Columbia, SC

The Selden K. Smith Foundation for Holocaust Education
Minda Miller
Columbia, SC


Tennessee Holocaust Commission
Danielle Kahane-Kaminsky, Executive Director
Nashville, TN


Holocaust Museum Houston
Dr. Kelly Zúñiga, CEO
Houston, TX


The Virginia Holocaust Museum
Dr. Charles W. Sydnor, Acting Executive Director
Richmond Virginia


Music of Remembrance
Dr. Mina Miller, President and Artistic Director
Seattle, WA

The Ray Wolpow Institute for the Study of the Holocaust, Genocide, and Crimes Against Humanity
Western Washington University
Dr. Sandra Alfers, Director
Bellingham, WA


Nathan and Esther Pelz Holocaust Education Resource Center
Dr. Shay Pilnik, Executive Director
Milwaukee, WI


Finnish Holocaust Remembrance Association
Oula Silvennoinen, Chairman
Helsinki, Finland 

Human Security Initiative
Dr. Gregory Weeks, Director
Vienna, Austria

Individual Signatories


Prof. Dan J. Puckett
Department of History
Troy University
Montgomery, AL

Ms. Phyllis Weinstein, Founding President
Birmingham Holocaust Education Center
Birmingham, AL


Marcia Reines Josephy
Josephy Exhibitions
Los Angeles, CA

Dr. Arthur B. Shostak
Drexel University
Emeritus Professor of Sociology
Alameda, CA

Dr. Bill Younglove, Instructor and Teacher Supervisor
California State University Long Beach
Lakewood, CA


Prof. Emerita Mira Binford
Department of Communications
Quinnipiac University
Hamden, CT


Mark R. Freid, Board President
Holocaust Memorial Resource and Education Center of Florida
Orlando, FL

Barbara Goldstein, Executive Director
Holocaust Education Resource Council
Tallahassee, FL

Dr. Miriam Klein Kassenoff
Holocaust Educator, Author, and Child Survivor
Miami Beach, FL

Holly Mandelkern, Author and Holocaust Educator
Winter Park, FL

Arnold Mittelman, President
National Jewish Theater Foundation
Director, Holocaust Theater International Initiative
Coral Gables, FL

Dr. Leon Weissberg, Holocaust Educator
LTW Educational Consultants
Hollywood, FL


Ethan Bensinger, Documentary Filmmaker
Bensinger Global Media
Deerfield, IL


Nancy Civin, Holocaust Educator
Baltimore, MD

Jeanette Parmigiani, Director of Holocaust Programs
Baltimore Jewish Council
Baltimore, MD

Marsha Tishler, Holocaust Educator and Survivor
Rockville, MD


Jan Darsa, Senior Associate for Jewish Education
Facing History and Ourselves
Brookline, MA

Mark Ludwig, Executive Director
Terezin Music Foundation
Boston, MA


Dr. Henry Greenspan, Founder
Working Group on Integrity in Holocaust Remembrance
University of Michigan
Ann Arbor, MI

Dr. Margaret Lincoln, Holocaust Educator
Battle Creek, MI

Dr. Jamie L. Wraight, Director
The Voice/Vision Holocaust Survivor Oral History Archive
The University of Michigan – Dearborn
Dearborn, MI


Raymonde Fiol, Past President
Holocaust Survivors Group of Southern Nevada
Las Vegas, NV

New Hampshire

Prof. Paul Vincent, Chair
Department of Holocaust & Genocide Studies
Keene State College
Keene, NH

Thomas White, Coordinator of Educational Outreach
Cohen Center for Holocaust and Genocide Studies
Keene, NH

New Jersey

Dr. Harvey R. Kornberg, Director
Koppelman Holocaust Center
Rider University
Lawrenceville, NJ

Peppy Margolis, Director of Community Programs
Institute for Holocaust and Genocide Studies
Branchburg, NJ

Prof. Ann L. Saltzman, Director Emerita
Center for Holocaust/Genocide Study
Drew University
Madison, NJ

Dr. Harriet Sepinwall, Professor Emerita
College of Saint Elizabeth
Morristown, NJ

New York

Prof. Mehnaz Afridi, Director
Holocaust, Genocide and Interfaith Education Center
Manhattan College
Riverdale, NY

Bonnie Gurewitsch, Retired Archivist and Curator
Museum of Jewish Heritage — A Living Memorial to the Holocaust
New York, NY

Prof. Patricia A. Kress
Department of Psychology
Monroe Community College
Rochester, NY

Dr. Dan Leshem, Director
Kupferberg Holocaust Center
Queensborough Community College
Bayside, NY

Dr. Jud Newborn, Author and Multimedia Lecturer
Sophie Scholl and the White Rose Resistance Project
Founding Historian, Museum of Jewish Heritage (1986-2000)
New York, NY

Dr. Rochelle G. Saidel, Founder and Executive Director
Remember the Women Institute
New York, NY

Jill L. Santiago, Holocaust Educator
Suffolk County Community College
Selden, NY

Dr. William L. Shulman, President
Association of Holocaust Organizations
Hollis, NY

Prof. Angelique Stevens
Department of English/Philosophy
Monroe Community College
Rochester, NY

Dr. Jill Vexler, Anthropologist and Curator
New York, NY

Prof. Lenore J. Weitzman
Vice-President, Jewish Book Council
Visiting Scholar, NYU Department of History
New York, NY

Carla Wittes, Director of Program
March of Remembrance and Hope (Canada)
New York, NY


Prof. Emeritus Marty J. Kalb
Department of Fine Arts
Ohio Wesleyan University
Delaware, OH

Lilly Kurtz, Board Member
Center for Holocaust and Humanity Education
Cincinnati, OH


Sonia Marie Leikam
Holocaust and Genocide Educator
Portland, OR


Jeanette Friedman
Holocaust and Human Rights Educator and Author
Paradise Valley, PA

Prof. Jonathan Friedman, Director
Holocaust and Genocide Studies
West Chester University
West Chester, PA

Amanda J. Hornberger, Coordinator
Lakin Holocaust Library & Resource Center
Reading, PA

Prof. Emeritus Arthur B. Shostak
Department of Sociology
Drexel University
Philadelphia, PA

South Carolina

Leah F. Chase, Board Member
South Carolina Council on the Holocaust
Charleston, SC

Eileen Chepenik, Chair
South Carolina Council on the Holocaust
Charleston, SC

Dr. Lilly Filler, Secretary
South Carolina Council on the Holocaust
Columbia, SC

Mrs. Lyssa Harvey, Ed.S, Co-Chair
Columbia Holocaust Education Commission
Columbia, SC

Prof. Emeritus Kevin Lewis
Department of Religious Studies
University of South Carolina
Columbia, SC


Ilana Cone Kennedy, Director of Education
Holocaust Center for Humanity
Seattle, WA

Nancy Powell, Director
The Powell Heller Holocaust Education Conference
Tacoma, WA

Prof. Emeritus Ray Wolpow
Western Washington University
Bellingham, WA


Beth Dotan, Former Director
Institute for Holocaust Education Omaha
Shimshit, Jezreel Valley

Marco Gutewort, Historian and Deputy Chairman
Castle and Memorial Site Lichtenburg
Bad Schmiedeberg, Saxony-Anhalt, Germany

Ilana Krygier Lapides, Director of Holocaust and Human Rights Education
Calgary Jewish Federation
Calgary, Canada