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Community life
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Moe Cohen

Oral history interview with Moe Cohen who was born in 1896 in Montreal.

Ann Krieger

Oral history interview with Ann Krieger. Ann speaks on the Jewish community in Vancouver around the early turn of the century. She speaks of O’Bryan Hall and the two Jewish groups - orthodox and reform - that had no meeting place for High Holy Days, and rented O’Bryan Hall and held services together. They hired a rabbi (from Seattle).

Originally, David Oppenheimer and Ann's brother-in-law [Milton], were in business together, managing the Oppenheimer Brothers Ltd.. David's grandfather started the business, then David's father (Simon) and mother died, left two children -- mother's maiden name Leiser, an old Victoria family. Milton Oppenheimer was Simon's brother, he married his sister-in-law's sister, and adopted the two children, David and Ruth, and subsequently had Edith, who was Ann's sister-in-law.

Milton brought the business over to Vancouver, which became head office, with Victoria still in operation.

Ann remembers Milton as a very fine man, and felt sure he must have been active in the community. His wife Amy was Jewish (she was a Leiser), but anti-Semitic, and had no Jewish friends at all. David married a non-Jew, and Milton objected to the marriage. Edith had a few Jewish friends, but knew the Wassermans and the Evans family; she was sent to Berkeley to meet Jewish people.

Ann tells of a collection of Oppenheimer memorabilia that Edith had and suggests that Cyril contact her about seeing the material and copying some of it.

Norman & Bernice Brown

Oral history interview with Norman Brown who arrived in Vancouver in 1907 and Bernice immigrated to Vancouver after marrying Norman in San Fransico in 1930. Norman attended Talmud Torah school when he was a child. Both were involved in a variety of Jewish community organizations. Bernice was president of both Federated Jewish Women and National Council of Jewish Women. Norman was president of the Canadian Jewish Council. He discusses memories of early life in Strathcona and Mount Pleasant. Interview ends with a discussion of photographs.

Rebecca Becker

Oral history interview with Rebecca Becker who emigrated to Winnipeg with her family in 1906 from Romania. Rebecca was quite involved in the Jewish community such as Queen Esther Ring, secretary of B'nai B'rith during the late 1930's and involved with the B'nai B'rith Ladies. Involved in the Mizrachi community and the Jewish Home for the Aged.

Joan Vanderveen-Berlow

Oral history interview with Joan Vanderveen-Berlow who was born in Saskatoon in 1935 but shortly moved with the family to Vancouver. Received her Master's degree in sociology in Boston, later in life was the founder and creator of the Temple Sholom and Reform Congregation. She remained an active member in the Jewish community, doing her best to help it develop.

Marjorie Groberman

Oral history interview with Marjorie Groberman who was born in Edmonton in 1919. Marjorie started the first State of Israel Bond drive and chaired the Jewish Federation.

Deborah Riverbend

Oral history interview with Deborah Riverbend who was born in New York City in 1944, the same as her mother, although her father was born in Russia in 1902.

Tessler, Ronnie

Charlotte Piek

Oral history interview with Charlotte Piek who was born in Munich, leaving for the United States in 1939 with her husband. Mrs. Piek notes the intermingling of the Jewish community in Munich growing up.

Gloria Levi

Oral history interview with Gloria Levi. Gloria (née Hammerman) Levi was born in 1937 in Brooklyn, New York. From a very early age, Gloria understood the importance of engaging in her community and dedicating herself to issues of social justice. Since moving to Canada in the 1950s, she has continued to help improve the lives of those around her through her work with groups such as Jewish Federation of Greater Vancouver, Habitat for Humanity, Innovative Care Advocacy, and other organizations in Vancouver.

Gloria is a Gerontologist, Social Worker, and Author. With 30 years of experience in the field of aging as a social services consultant, trainer, and educator. Gloria has authored among other works "Dealing With Memory Changes As You Grow Older". Undergoing a Google search for Gloria Levi will find that she is extremely active in the community and sits on a variety of boards. Please take note of her work with the Louis Brier Home and Hospital as well as Habitate for Humanity.

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