Annual Westchester Countywide
Yom Hashoah Holocaust Commemoration
Keeping the Memory Alive: Generation to Generation
The Holocaust & Human Rights Education Center (HHREC) and Westchester Jewish Council (WJC) present the Annual Westchester Countywide Yom Hashoah Holocaust Commemoration each year in April at the beautiful Holocaust & Human Rights Education Center Garden of Remembrance at 148 Martine Avenue, White Plains. This event is held to commemorate the approximately six million Jews murdered in the Holocaust by Nazi Germany and its collaborators.
In 2023, the Annual Countywide Yom Hashoah Commemoration 80th Anniversary of the Warsaw Ghetto Uprising was held on Tuesday, April 18th. A crowd estimated at close to 350 people attended the event and featured a keynote presentation by Holocaust Survivor Dr. Aliza Erber, who shared a story of how her mother had to give her away as a young child to live in an underground bunker and how she survived to ultimately reunite with her after the end of WWII. To see and hear her moving talk, click here.
The program began with the Opening of the Gates by Hillels of Westchester students, and a Sounding of the Shofar by Mitchell Ostrove, Board member, HHREC and WJC. Following the opening there was a Procession of Rescued Torahs from synagogues across Westchester and neighboring counties. Locations of origin were read by Cantor Robin Joseph, President of Kol Hazzanim, Westchester Community of Cantors and Cantor at Temple Beth Shalom of Hastings; a welcome message by Michael Gyory, Chairman HHREC; an Invocation by Rev. Doris Dalton, Chair of the Westchester County Human Rights Commission; and remarks by Westchester County Executive George Latimer.
The program also featured a Candle Lighting by the Somers Holocaust Commission Student Winners, and the Holocaust Kaddish was delivered by Rabbi Moshe Edelman, Westchester Board of Rabbis. Closing remarks were delivered by William H. Schrag, President WJC.
2023 Countywide Yom Hashoah Commemoration
at Garden of Remembrance
Photos courtesy: Julie Brimberg Rothschild
Past Countywide Yom Hashoah Commemorations
William H. Donat Commemoration
In conjunction with Iona University
Each year, HHREC co-sponsors this event that features a distinguished lecturer to commemorate Yom Hashoah at Iona University in New Rochelle, NY. In 2023, HHREC co-sponsored a live, in-person event on April 25th at the LaPenta School of Business at Iona College featuring a presentation by distinguished lecturer Dr. Deborah Dwork.
The event also included a presentation of the HHREC 21st Annual Susan J. Goldberg Memorial Teacher Award to Francisco Sandoval of New Rochelle High School.
Past guest speakers who have appeared include:
Dr. Annamaria Orla-Bukowska
Institute of Sociology at Jagiellonian University, Krakow
Award-Winning Journalist and Author