SUNDAY, MAY 9

​Programs listed on Eastern Time

9:00am

Survivor Lounge: Elite Olshtain

Conversation with Holocaust Survivor, Elite Olshtain. Interviewed by Shifra Hovav.

טרקלין ניצולי השואה

בואו לשמוע את העדות של עלית אולשטיין, ניצולת שואה המתגוררת בישראל, שרואיינה על-ידי שפרה חובב (התוכנית בשפה העברית).

2G Descendant Small Group Discussion

"The Vulnerabilities and Strengths We Have Inherited from our Parents: A Balanced Perspective"

Facilitated by Myra Giberovitch

Interactive Exhibits

Visite Guidée de la Maison Anne Frank (Anne Frank House Guided Tour en français)

Generously sponsored by the Kingdom of the Netherlands

Presentation par Julie Couture, Coordinatrice des projets canadiens a la Département des Projets Éducatifs. La Maison Anne Frank est une organisation et un musée dans la maison où Anne Frank s'est cachée pendant l'Holocauste. La Maison Anne Frank enseigne l'histoire de la vie d'Anne dans plusieurs pays, La Maison Anne Frank, située à Amsterdam, a ouvert ses portes le 3 mai 1957 avec Otto Frank, le père d’Anne Frank (The Anne Frank House is an independent non-profit organization and museum in the house where Anne Frank went into hiding. The Anne Frank House, located in Amsterdam, was established on 3 May 1957 in cooperation with Otto Frank, Anne Frank’s father. The Anne Frank House raises awareness about Anne’s life story all over the world).

10:00am

Interactive Exhibits

Anne Frank House Guided Tour (English) (10:10am start)

Generously sponsored by the Kingdom of the Netherlands

Presented by Julie Couture, Canadian projects Coordinator for the Department of Educational Projects. The Anne Frank House is an independent non-profit organization and museum in the house where Anne Frank went into hiding. The Anne Frank House, located in Amsterdam, was established on 3 May 1957 in cooperation with Otto Frank, Anne Frank’s father. The Anne Frank House raises awareness about Anne’s life story all over the world.

11:00am

Breakout Sessions

Covid-19, Antisemitism and Holocaust Memory in Israel

Dr. Liat Steir-Livny

The COVID-19 pandemic began in 2019, spread to the rest of the world in 2020 and still holds nations in its grip in 2021. How did it affect Antisemitism and Holocaust memory? The first part of the talk will discuss the way the pandemic intensified Antisemitic representations in 2020 which were intertwined with anti-Zionist and anti-Israeli notions. The second part of the talk will discuss the ways the Holocaust has become a frame of reference in Israel for the interpretation of the COVID-19 pandemic and will center on the evolution of these references in the media, digital media and social media.

Dr. Liat Steir-Livny  is an Assistant Professor (Senior Lecturer) in the Department of Cultural Studies, Creation and Production at Sapir College, and a tutor and course coordinator for the Cultural Studies MA program and the Department of Literature, Language, and the Arts at the Open University of Israel. Her research focuses on the changing commemoration of the Holocaust in Israel from the 1940s until the present. She has authored numerous articles and five books: Two Faces in the Mirror (Eshkolot-Magness, 2009, Hebrew), Let the Memorial Hill Remember (Resling, 2014, Hebrew), Is it O.K to Laugh about it? (Vallentine Mitchell, 2017), Three Years, Two Perspectives, One Trauma (The Herzl Institute for the Study of Zionism, University of Haifa, 2019, Hebrew) and Remaking Holocaust Memory (Syracuse University press, 2019). In 2019 she won The Young Scholar Award given jointly by the Association for Israel Studies (AIS) and the Israel Institute.

The Holocaust in the Fiction and Memoirs of Chava Rosenfarb

Professor Goldie Morgentaler

Chava Rosenfarb was one of the great chroniclers of the Holocaust in Poland, who is little known outside Yiddish-language circles because she wrote primarily in Yiddish. While some of her novels and stories have been translated into English, such as the epic three-volume The Tree of Life: A Trilogy of Life in the Lodz Ghetto, not all of her works have been translated. This presentation by her daughter and translator will offer an overview of Rosenfarb's life and work by way of introducing this important Canadian-Jewish writer to an audience that may be unfamiliar with her work. The talk will provide an overview of the novelist's life and her experiences during the Holocaust before discussing her fiction, including the trilogy, The Tree of Life, and the Bergen-Belsen diary that she wrote and published after her liberation from that camp. 

Goldie Morgentaler is Professor of English at the University of Lethbridge. She is the translator from Yiddish to English of Chava Rosenfarb's work including Rosenfarb’s seminal Holocaust novel, The Tree of Life: A Trilogy of Life in the Lodz Ghetto. Her translation of Rosenfarb’s book of short stories, Survivors: Seven Short Stories won a Canadian Jewish Book Award as well as the Modern Language Association’s Memorial Prize in Yiddish Studies. She is also the editor and translator of Rosenfarb's book of essays called Confessions of a Yiddish Writer and Other Essays, published by McGill-Queens University Press in 2019. This collection won a 2019 Canadian Jewish Literary Award. Both of her parents were Holocaust survivors.

Holocaust Memory and Education in Poland: Current Initiatives in Polish/Jewish Relations

Zuzanna Radzik

 

Learn about the local activities undertaken in former shtetls in Poland in the realm of education and remembrance. Zuzanna Radzik, Vice President of Forum for Dialogu, will present the local activities undertaken in former shtetls in Poland in the realm of education and remembrance with a focus on participants of the Leaders of Dialogue network.

 

Zuzanna Radzik, Vice President of Forum for Dialogue - Theologian, graduate of the Pontifical Faculty of Theology in Warsaw and the Hebrew University in Jerusalem. She is a regular contributor to Tygodnik Powszechny, a Catholic weekly, and an author of books on women’s presence in the Church. In 2019, she received the Irena Sendler Memorial Award for her work on Polish/Jewish dialogue and the role of women in Catholicism.

Holocaust Memory in the Era of Social Media

Jane Jacobs-Kimmelman & Yoni Berrous

What should we know about the growing presence of the Holocaust and related imagery on the social media platform? How can the digital world be used safely and effectively when introducing the new generation to the Holocaust? In this breakout session we will discuss recent social media offerings on this subject and present some Yad Vashem digital tools that have been created recently.

Yoni Berrous was born in France and moved to Israel in 1992. He has an MA in International Relations from the Hebrew University of Jerusalem. In 2007, Yoni Berrous began working as a guide for students and Israeli security personnel at Yad Vashem. He has also worked as the Head of the European Jewish Programming in the International School for Holocaust Studies, providing educational training for formal and informal educators from Jewish communities in Europe. He is currently responsible at Yad Vashem for developing Holocaust training for educators from Canada.

Jane Jacobs-Kimmelman is the Head of the International Relations Section at Yad Vashem's International School for Holocaust Studies, and an expert on the evolution of the Social Media in the domain of Holocaust Education.

12:00pm

Combatting Online Hate & Antisemitism

Michal Cotler-Wunsh, MP Anthony Housefather, MP Marty Morantz & Congresswoman Debbie Wasserman Schultz, moderated by Michael Mostyn

A discussion about increasing online antisemitism and online hatred, responses to this serious problem, and current efforts taking place across the globe to combat it. Speakers are all members of the Inter-Parliamentary Task Force to Combat Online Antisemitism, which includes legislators from Canada, Australia, Israel, the UK, and the USA. The Task Force's goals include the adoption and publication of transparent policies related to hate speech, raising awareness about antisemitism on social media platforms and its consequences, and holding social media platforms (e.g. Twitter, TikTok, Facebook, Google) accountable. 

Michal Cotler-Wunsh is an Israeli politician. She served as a Member of the Knesset for the Blue and White party from 2020-2021. She serves as Chair of the Special Committee on Drug and Alcohol Use, Chair of the Subcommittee on Israel-Diaspora Relations, and as a member of the Foreign Affairs and Defense, Law, Children’s Rights, Women’s Rights, Immigration and Integration Committees, and Foreign Affairs Subcommittee. Michal is also the Chair of the Canada-Israel Friendship Group, the Knesset’s Official Representative on Matters Related to the International Criminal Court (ICC), and the Chair of Knesset’s Caucus for Ethiopians in Israel.

Anthony Housefather is a Canadian politician, representing the Liberal Party. He is the Member of Parliament representing the riding of Mount Royal on the island of Montreal. From 2015 to 2019, Anthony served as the Chair of the Justice and Human Rights Committee. Following the 2019 election, he was named the Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Labour. From 2015 to 2019, he was the Chairman of the Standing Committee on Justice and Human Rights. 

Marty Morantz is a Canadian politician, representing the Conservative Party. He represents Winnipeg's Charleswood-St. James-Assiniboia-Headingly riding. In previous years, Marty served on the boards of Shalom Residences Assisted Living, the Jewish National Fund, the Jewish Federation (CJA) Charitable Allocations Committee, and many others. 

Congresswoman Debbie Wasserman Schultz is an American politician serving as the US Representative from Florida's 23rd congressional district. She was first elected to congress in 2004, and is a member of the Democratic Party. Congresswoman Wasserman Schultz is also a former Chair of the Democratic National Committee, and a national campaign co-Chair for Hillary Clinton's 2008 run for president.

Michael Mostyn is the Chief Executive Officer of B’nai Brith Canada and oversees the organization’s programming and advocacy initiatives. He also served as an official member of the Canadian Delegation to the International Task Force on Holocaust Education, Remembrance and Research. Michael was awarded the Queen Elizabeth II Diamond Jubilee Medal in 2012, in recognition of his community service to Canada. 

1:00pm

The Holocaust & Unfinished Business

PART 1: Imperfect Justice: Restitution & Lessons for the Future

Ambassador Stuart Eizenstat

Understand what restitution has been provided for Holocaust Survivors and families of victims & the work that remains to be done

Ambassador Eizenstat is a senior member of Covington & Burling LLP’s international practice.  He has held key senior positions in four U.S. administrations, including chief White House domestic policy adviser to President Carter (1977-1981); U.S. Ambassador to the European Union, Under Secretary of Commerce for International Trade, Under Secretary of State for Economic, Business and Agricultural Affairs, and Deputy Secretary of the Treasury in the Clinton Administration (1993-2001).  He was also a member of the White House staff for President Johnson (1967-1968). Much of the interest in providing belated justice for Holocaust victims and other victims of Nazi tyranny during World War II came from his leadership of the Clinton Administration as Special Representative of the President and Secretary of State on Holocaust-Era Issues. His book, President Carter: The White House Years, has been favorably reviewed by The New York Times, The Washington Post, National Review, Moment Magazine, and many other publications. Ambassador Eizenstat has received nine honorary doctorate degrees from universities and academic institutions.  He was awarded high civilian awards from the governments of France, Germany, Austria, Israel and Belgium, Secretaries of State Warren Christopher and Madeleine Albright, and Secretary of Treasury Lawrence Summers.  He grew up and was educated in the public schools of Atlanta.  He is a Phi Beta Kappa, cum laude graduate of the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill and of Harvard Law School. He and his late wife, Fran, have two sons and eight grandchildren.

PART 2: The Claims Conference: Global Initiatives for Survivors and a Look to the Future

Greg Schneider & Gideon Taylor

Gregory Schneider was appointed Executive Vice President of the Conference on Jewish Material Claims Against Germany (Claims Conference) in 2009. A passionate advocate for Holocaust survivors, he joined the Claims Conference in 1995 as an assistant to the then Executive Vice President, becoming Director of Allocations and Chief Operating Officer. Mr. Schneider has overseen the creation and implementation of several Claims Conference individual compensation payment programs for Jewish victims of Nazism. Chief among these was the Program for Former Slave and Forced Laborers, which paid $1.6 billion to 173,000 Holocaust survivors in 87 countries, the result of distributing and processing applications in eight languages, working with hundreds of local organizations worldwide that assisted applicants, and helping document tens of thousands of claims that otherwise would have been deemed ineligible. Mr. Schneider also guided the creation of many additional programs to compensate victims such as the victims of Nazi medical experiments, former refugees to Switzerland, survivors of the Nazi occupation of Budapest, first-ever one-time payments to Nazi victims in the former Soviet Union, child survivors, and Kindertransport survivors.

Gideon Taylor was elected President of the Claims Conference in 2020.  Mr. Taylor previously served as Executive Vice President of the Claims Conference as well as Associate Executive Vice President at the American Jewish Joint Distribution Committee (JDC), the overseas humanitarian arm of the American Jewish community. He directed rescue operations in Syria and Yemen and coordinated activities in Ethiopia. He also oversaw JDC’s International Development Program, which implemented major disaster relief, and development programs in Africa, the Middle East and Europe. He subsequently managed the global program and the $250 million budget of the organization. Originally from Ireland, Mr. Taylor is a law graduate of Trinity College in Dublin and received his master’s degree in law from Oxford University. He is admitted as an attorney in the State of New York, Ireland and the United Kingdom. In 2013, Mr. Taylor became pro bono Chair of Operations of the World Jewish Restitution Organization (WJRO), representing world Jewry in pursuing claims for the recovery of Jewish properties seized during the Holocaust in Eastern Europe. His work ensured the passage of legislation regarding heirless Jewish property in Serbia, former Jewish communal property in Romania and Latvia, and social welfare payments for Holocaust survivors from Poland.

2:00pm

CLOSING KEYNOTE

Spark of Inspiration: The Hard-Fought Hope of Dr. Ruth

Dr. Ruth Westheimer, interviewed by Dr. Stephen Smith

In testimony, films, books and even graphic novels, Dr. Ruth Westheimer, an orphan of the Holocaust, works feverishly to share her story of escape and survival, now more than ever at age 93. Why? What must students of all ages today know about lessons from the past? Time for Dr. Ruth’s answers of a lifetime in this keynote conversation with Stephen Smith, Finci-Viterbi Executive Director of USC Shoah Foundation and UNESCO Chair on Genocide Education.

Dr. Ruth Westheimer is a psychosexual therapist who helped to pioneer the field of media psychology with her radio program, Sexually Speaking. Dr. Westheimer's expertise has spanned across television, books, newspapers, games, home video, computer software and her own website. She hosted several series on the Lifetime Channel and other cable television networks, and published 45 books on sex and sexuality. Ruth is also a Holocaust Survivor. After her father was taken by Nazis, Ruth was sent via Kindertransport to Switzerland. Both of her parents were murdered during the Holocaust. In 1950, she moved to France, where she studied and taught psychology at the University of Paris. In 1956, she immigrated to the US, and earned an MA in Sociology from The New School in 1959, and an Ed.D. from Columbia University in 1970. She briefly worked for Planned Parenthood, which inspired her to continue studying human sexuality. She later became an adjunct associate professor at New York-Presbyterian Hospital, and taught at Lehman CollegeBrooklyn CollegeAdelphi UniversityColumbia University and West PointBy 1983, Dr. Ruth's show was the top-rated radio show in the area, and in 1984 NBC Radio began syndicating it nationwide as the Dr. Ruth Show. She began hosting several television programs on the Lifetime TV network. During the 1980s "Dr. Ruth" became a household name. Dr. Ruth still lives in the "cluttered three-bedroom apartment in Washington Heights where she raised her two children and became famous" to be near the two synagogues of which she is a member, the YMHA of which she was president for three years, and a "still sizable community of German Jewish World War II refugees." Dr. Ruth speaks English, German, French, and Hebrew.

Dr. Stephen D. Smith is the Finci -Viterbi Executive Director of USC Shoah Foundation, and holds the UNESCO Chair on Genocide Education. Smith founded the UK Holocaust Centre in Nottinghamshire, England and cofounded the Aegis Trust for the prevention of crimes against humanity and genocide. Smith has served as a producer on a number of film and new media projects, including Dimensions in Testimony, and the VR project The Last Goodbye. In recognition of his work, Smith has become a member of the Order of the British Empire and received the Interfaith Gold Medallion. He also holds two honorary doctorates, and lectures widely on issues relating to the history and collective response to the Holocaust, genocide, and crimes against humanity.

3:00pm

CLOSING PERFORMANCE

These, I Remember

A musical presentation with Temple Sinai Congregation of Toronto & Harold Green Jewish Theatre Company, featuring world-renowned performers.

This performance will sum up the emotional topics explored in Liberation75's programs, and inspire the continuation of Holocaust education and remembrance as we lose the last of our Survivors. Created by the same team that created the provocative and highly successful Slichot services for Temple Sinai and The Harold Green Jewish Theatre, These, I Remember will be based on three pillars of Holocaust remembrance: Education, Never Again (for the Jews or anyone else), and The State of Israel.

 

Produced by Cantor Charles Osborne, performers include Theresa Tova, Gabi Epstein, Jake Epstein, David Eisner Avery Saltzman, Amy Sky and violinist Moshe Hammer.  Joining them will be the Temple Sinai’s Rabbi Michael Dolgin, the Temple Sinai Holiday Choir directed by Ross Inglis, and the Temple Sinai L’Dor Vador Youth Choir directed by Cantor Sharon Brown-Levy.  A 12-piece orchestra will be conducted by the Harold Green Jewish Theatre music director, Mark Camilleri.  Included will be music written especially for this program by Amy Sky and Charles Osborne.