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2021 National Tribute Virtual Event

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On April 22, 2021, the Museum community came together for a virtual tribute event.

We conferred our highest honor, the Elie Wiesel Award, on Ambassador Stuart Eizenstat and the US Department of Justice's Office of Special Investigations (accepted by former OSI Director Eli Rosenbaum). We also heard inspiring words from the event’s chairs—Holocaust survivors Louise Lawrence-Israëls and Alfred Münzer—as well as celebrity guests and Museum supporters from across the country, who reaffirmed our resolve to ensure the lessons of the Holocaust shape the way forward.

This moving experience is now available to watch and share:

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Featured Guests

2021 Elie Wiesel Award Honorees

Ambassador Stuart Eizenstat
Ambassador Stuart Eizenstat

By bringing the issue of Holocaust justice back on the world’s agenda after decades of indifference, Ambassador Eizenstat has played a singular role in securing the permanence of Holocaust memory as well as compensation and restitution for Holocaust survivors worldwide.

In 1978, in his capacity as Chief White House Domestic Affairs Adviser under President Carter, Eizenstat played a pivotal role in the establishment of the President’s Commission on the Holocaust, recommended the appointment of Elie Wiesel as its chair, and was instrumental in the legislation that led to the creation of the United States Holocaust Memorial Museum.

Serving four additional presidential administrations, Ambassador Eizenstat has led tireless efforts to secure justice for survivors. In the Clinton administration, while serving as Ambassador to the European Union, Under Secretary of Commerce, Under Secretary of State, and Deputy Secretary of the Treasury, he also served as Special Representative on Holocaust-Era Issues. He negotiated major compensation agreements with many European countries, banks, corporations, and insurance companies, the 42-nation Washington Principles on Nazi-confiscated Art, and for communal and private property restitution. During the Obama administration, as Special Adviser to the Secretary of State, he negotiated additional agreements including with the French railroads and led the effort to create the 47-nation Terezin Declaration encouraging more benefits to survivors. He continued to serve as an Expert Advisor on Holocaust-Era Issues in the Trump and Biden administrations.

Ambassador Eizenstat has also served for more than a decade as the lead negotiator for the Conference on Jewish Material Claims Against Germany with the German Government, securing increased benefits for survivors, including those who lived behind the Iron Curtain. He chairs the board of the Defiant Requiem Foundation and is an active member of the Museum’s Committee on Conscience, which oversees the work of the Simon-Skjodt Center for the Prevention of Genocide and seeks to do for victims of genocide today what was not done for the Jews of Europe.

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US Department of Justice's Office of Special Investigations
US Department of Justice's Office of Special Investigations Former OSI Director Eli Rosenbaum, will accept the award.

The United States Department of Justice’s (DOJ) Office of Special Investigations (OSI) was established in 1979 to identify, investigate, and bring to trial people living in the United States who participated in Nazi crimes against humanity. Staffed by a dedicated team of prosecutors, investigators, and historians, OSI sought out Nazi perpetrators living in the United States who had entered the country illegally.

Between its founding and 2010, when it was merged into a new DOJ component, the Human Rights and Special Prosecutions Section (HRSP), OSI opened hundreds of investigations of people suspected of Nazi crimes leading to the denaturalization and/or removal of more than 100 Nazi offenders from the United States. In addition, with the assistance of the Immigration and Naturalization Service—and since 2002, its successor, the Department of Homeland Security—OSI blocked more than 200 people suspected of participating in Nazi crimes from gaining entry to the United States. The Washington Post called the OSI is the “world’s most aggressive and successful Nazi-hunting operation” that has won more cases involving Nazi perpetrators over the past 30 years than have the government authorities of the rest of the countries of the world combined.

OSI documented and made public US intelligence agencies’ recruitment of such Nazi perpetrators as Klaus Barbie, known as “the Butcher of Lyon” for his torture of Jews and members of the French Resistance and the deportation of Jewish children to Auschwitz. It also denaturalized and deported, among others, John Demjanjuk, the notorious Sobibor extermination camp guard, and Arthur Rudolph, a wartime Nazi slavemaster and later a senior NASA official in charge of constructing the Saturn V rocket. OSI also performed the key investigative work, under Ambassador Eizenstat’s leadership, that proved that the Third Reich transferred Holocaust victim-origin gold to the Swiss National Bank during the war and helped achieve the declassification and public release of millions of pages of classified US Government records on Nazi criminals and their crimes.

Given that the vast majority of Holocaust perpetrators are no longer alive, the principal focus of the human rights enforcement work of the Human Rights and Special Prosecutions Section is now on prosecuting war criminals from postwar conflicts such as those in Bosnia, Serbia, Rwanda, and Guatemala. Just this year, however, it won an important court victory in a World War II Nazi case involving a former guard of concentration camp inmates. OSI and HRSP’s groundbreaking work in preventing perpetrators of genocide and other civilian mass atrocities from finding refuge in the US is a beacon of hope for the victims of these crimes.

The award to OSI will be accepted by former OSI Director Eli Rosenbaum, under whose leadership the majority of the unit’s prosecution successes were achieved and who is currently the Director of Human Rights Enforcement Strategy and Policy at the Human Rights and Special Prosecutions Section.

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Event Leadership

Chairs

Louise Lawrence-Israëls
Louise Lawrence-Israëls Holocaust survivor and Museum volunteer

“I have wanted to speak to as many people as I can, especially young people, about what happens when hate is allowed to flourish.”

 

Louise Lawrence-Israëls was born in Haarlem, the Netherlands. She and her family, along with other Jews, were ordered to relocate to Amsterdam and soon after, when she was six months old, her family went into hiding in a top-floor apartment with a family friend. Louise’s parents tried to provide as normal a childhood as possible for her and her brother. When Louise was three, her family was able to leave their hiding spot when Canadian forces liberated Amsterdam.

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Alfred Münzer
Alfred Münzer Holocaust survivor and Museum volunteer

“This Museum is a living memorial that gives voice to the six million who call out for a world free of prejudice, bigotry, and mass murder that claimed their lives.”

 

Alfred (Al) Münzer was born in 1941, also in the Netherlands. Sensing the growing danger, Al’s father took steps to hide his family. Al, at one year old, was placed into the care of an Indonesian family. In 1944, Al’s two sisters, who had been in hiding elsewhere, were denounced and sent to Westerbork concentration camp. Both girls were deported to Auschwitz and murdered. After liberation, Al’s mother, who survived several concentration camps, including Auschwitz,  returned to reclaim him. Al maintains a close relationship with the family who protected him.

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Host Committee

Jessica Abrahams and Christopher Fleming
Pennie and Gary Abramson
Elizabeth and Ivan Adler
Miriam and Sanford K. Ain
Marlene and Lee Alexander
Ellen and Allie Ash

Marianna and Brian Ashin
Susan Baer and Michael Abramowitz
Lois and Leslie Alperstein
Jamie and Joseph Baldinger
Florence and Richard Bank
Dottie Bennett and Richard Morton**
Kimberly and Lawrence Berger
Kim and Bruce Bernstein
Jackie and Bryan Blanken
Lynn and Wolf Blitzer
Beth and Daryle Bobb
Sandy Hofberg Bobb
Dr. Philip and Faith Bobrow
Nancy and Lanny Breuer
Alex Brill and Johanna Arenaza
Shelley and Joe Brodecki**
Anita Wolke Brooks and Kenneth Brooks
Alan and Nancy Bubes
Dorothy A. Canter
Claudia and Gilbert Carpel
Adam Chud and Audrey Ellis
Phyllis and David Coburn
Debra Lerner Cohen and Edward Cohen**
Marcy and Neil Cohen**
Lisa and Bruce Cort
Lauren and John Driscoll
Nancy and Marc Duber**
Ginny and Irwin Edlavitch
Dr. Marilyn Falik
Julie Farkas and Seth Goldman**
Raffi Freedman-Gurspan
Sarah and Adam Friedman
Debra and Peter Friedmann Gail and Maurice Gaspar
Susie and Michael Gelman**
Laura Ginns and Family**

Nancy and Dalbert Ginsberg
Marilyn and Michael Glosserman
Melissa and Benjamin Gottesman
Jill and Robert Granader
Ken and Karin Gross
Marty Gross and Bob Tracy
Kendra and Jim Hall
Phyllis and Richard Heideman**
Beth Heifetz**
Shelley and Allan Holt**
Rosalyn Levy Jonas
Amy Kaslow and Richard Rosetti**
Wendy and Burton Katzen
Marky and Martin “Bo” Kirsch
Kate Linde Kogan and Eli Kogan
Helen and Roger Krone
Pam Kurland and David Marchick**
Leslie and Bruce Lane
Sidney Lawrence
Jolie and Vladimir Lechtman
Jessica Leinwand and Sam Stein
Ellen and Stuart Lessans
Karen and Bruce Levenson
Frederic Levy and Caroline Burwell
Estie and Ed Lipsit
Judy and Brian Liss
Robin and Jeremy London
Jodi and Rodd Macklin**
Adele Malpass
Elizabeth Margosches and Donald Melman
Molly Meegan and Abbe Lowell
Jennifer Loew Mendelson and Dan Mendelson**
Deborah Miller and Adam Strickberger
Lindsay and Aaron Miller Linda and Sid Moskowitz
Michal and Michael Niakani
Melanie Nussdorf**
Bashi and Roger Packer

Bonnie and Rafi Prober
Gail and Andy Quartner
Jennifer and Michael Reichbach
Barbara and Bert Rein
Lisa Reiner
Shirley and Jerry Rich
Bella Rosenberg
Jean and Bill Rosenbluth
Cinthia and Horacio Rozanski
Melinda and Howard Rubin
Alisa and Aaron Rulnick
Ellen and Peter Safir
Deborah and Michael Salzberg**
Evelyn Sandground and William Perkins
Diane and Michael Sapir Hon. Allyson Y. Schwartz
Jennifer and Jason Schwartz
Alexis Shklar
Mickie Simon and Brian Schwalb
Sharon and David Slotkin
Jan Solomon and Ken Simonson
Dale and Alan Sorcher
Jon and Courtney Spaeth
Monica and Richard Sussman
Gene and Joseph Swedish
Ariana and Joseph Tipograph
Susan and Bruce Turnbull
Julie Wallick and David Selden Theresa and Mitch Webber
Lori and Martin Weinstein
Kate and Seth Wernick
Joel Wind
Melanie and Bradley Wine**

Carol and Michael Winer
Vicki and Bob Wychulis
Lauri and Jeff Zell**

** Indicates past chair of the National Tribute Dinner; Names in bold indicate those who have established a planned gift for the Museum through their estate plan or otherwise.

Program Agenda

THE POWER OF COMING TOGETHER: WELCOME 

Event Chairs: Alfred Münzer and Louise Lawrence-Israëls, Holocaust Survivors and Museum Volunteers

Museum Supporters: David Marchick, Jennifer Loew Mendelson, and Bradley Wine

Andres Abril, Director, Mid-Atlantic Region

2021 Elie Wiesel Award: Ambassador Stuart Eizenstat

Allan M. Holt, Vice Chairman, United States Holocaust Memorial Council

We Remember

Reflections from Holocaust survivors Louise Lawrence-Israëls, Steven Fenves, Agi Geva, and Estelle Laughlin

Dramatic readings of victims’ last messages and American GI eyewitness accounts by Jamie Lee Curtis, David Eigenberg, Morgan Freeman, Joshua Malina, Camryn Manheim, Tim Matheson, Mandy Patinkin, Elizabeth Tulloch, and General (Ret.) Robin Rand, CEO Gary Sinise Foundation

Museum Supporters: Jessica Abrahams, Dan Mendelson, Lauri and Jeff Zell, Julie Farkas and Seth Goldman, and Laura Ginns

Rising to the Challenge: The Need for Global Holocaust Education

Sara J. Bloomfield, Director, United States Holocaust Memorial Museum
Howard M. Lorber, Chairman, United States Holocaust Memorial Council

2021 Elie Wiesel Award: US Department of Justice, Office of Special Investigations 

(Formerly OSI, currently Human Rights and Special Prosecution Section)
Accepted by Eli Rosenbaum, former Director, OSI

Alfred Münzer, Holocaust Survivor

Mid-Atlantic Regional Office

Mid-Atlantic Regional Office

The Mid-Atlantic regional office serves Delaware, the District of Columbia, Maryland, North Carolina, Pennsylvania, Virginia, and West Virginia.