Sara J. Bloomfield, Director of the United States Holocaust Memorial Museum, will receive Hebrew Union College’s (HUC) highest humanitarian award, the Roger E. Joseph Prize, on Thursday, April 15, 2021 at 3:00 pm ET.
This international award, established in 1978, is presented to exceptional individuals or organizations that have made lasting contributions to the causes of human rights and whose work enhances the values and ideals of Judaism.
“Sara Bloomfield’s vision has advanced a living memorial that teaches the history and lessons of the Holocaust to audiences worldwide and inspires leaders and citizens to confront hatred, prevent, genocide, and promote human rights. With 46 million visitors to date and millions more online, the Museum, under her guidance, preserves and perpetuates the legacy of the Holocaust’s victims and survivors into the future,” stated HUC President Andrew Rehfeld, Ph.D.
Bloomfield will present the Roger E. Joseph Lecture on “Reflections on the Significance of Holocaust Memory in the 21st Century” on why the history and lessons of the Holocaust are not only timeless but timely. To attend, please register.
About Sara J. Bloomfield
Sara J. Boomfield has led the United States Holocaust Memorial Museum for 21 years, working to build a global institution that raises Holocaust awareness, deepens understanding of the lessons of the Holocaust, confronts denial, and advances genocide prevention. She serves on the International Auschwitz Council and is a recipient of the Officer’s Cross of the Order of Merit of the Republic of Poland and five honorary doctorates. She joined the planning staff of the Museum in 1986 when it was a project in development and served in a variety of roles before becoming Director in 1999. Originally from Cleveland, Ohio, she holds a B.A. in English Literature from Northwestern University, a M.A. in Education from John Carroll University, and has studied business administration on the graduate level.
History of Roger E. Joseph and the Joseph Prize
Roger E. Joseph was born in Minneapolis in 1917. A Phi Beta Kappa, magna cum laude graduate of the University of Minnesota, he studied Law at Harvard and Columbia Universities. He served in Europe during World War II, earned a field promotion to Captain, and was cited for bravery. After the war, Joseph returned to Minneapolis to resume his legal career. In 1951, at thirty-four, he was severely stricken with polio, which left him almost completely paralyzed. After years spent learning to care for himself, he was ultimately able to resume his law practice. Joseph was a man of deep ethical convictions and abiding idealism. Despite his own affliction, he readily shared his valiant spirit, compassionate nature, and remarkable inner strength with others. Until his death in 1966, he was active in many causes, including Temple Israel in Minneapolis, MN, the Jewish Family and Children’s Services, and National Jewish Hospital in Denver, CO.
To honor their brother’s memory, Mr. Burton M. Joseph, z”l, and Mrs. Betty Greenberg established the Roger E. Joseph Prize through a grant from the Joseph Foundation to Hebrew Union College–Jewish Institute of Religion. The first recipient of the Joseph Prize was Victor Kugler, who gave refuge to Anne Frank and her family. Joseph Prize recipients have included The People of Le Chambon, a Huguenot village in France, who rescued thousands of Jewish children during the Holocaust; Helen Suzman, a leader of the anti-apartheid movement in South Africa; Rosa Parks, pioneer of the American civil rights movement; Daniel Pearl, in memoriam, and The Daniel Pearl Foundation, honoring the courageous journalist’s mission of justice and human rights; Chaplain Mychal Judge, in memoriam, who died ministering to New York firefighters on September 11, 2001, and The City of New York Fire Department, for their heroism and sacrifice; and HIAS, the global nonprofit that aids and protects refugees.
The Roger E. Joseph Prize is sponsored by the Joseph Prize Endowment and the Joseph Family in memory of Roger E. Joseph, z”l.