Thanks to Ilana Blumenthal, Public Relations Associate at the National Museum of American Jewish History, for this guest post.
My first vote is going to the Marx Brothers. That’s an easy one. Their quick wits and dry humor have filled both my childhood and adulthood with laughter, and to me, humor is one of the greatest contributions one can make to society. I can’t forget Richard Rodgers or Stephen Sondheim. At the age of 27, I have found that their music and words have taught me more about the world, history and human nature than textbooks ever could have and with much more color and passion. Additionally, I have lived my life as a committed Zionist, so Golda Meir or Henrietta Szold also make my list of the top 18 American Jews that I feel have made the biggest contribution to society. Who will make yours?
The National Museum of American Jewish History launched a website, http://onlyinamerica.nmajh.org/, that asks the public to help select who will be included in our Only in America® Gallery/Hall of Fame, which will be a signature component of the core exhibition when the new Museum opens in November 2010. Situated on the first floor of the Museum, the gallery will examine the choices, challenges and opportunities that have been faced by a remarkable group of American Jews on their paths to accomplishment through featuring major film productions, original artifacts, and an interactive database.
Visitors to the website will have the opportunity to vote on a list of 218 candidates in the fields of Arts and Entertainment; Business and Philanthropy; Literature; Performance; Politics, Law and Activism; Religion and Thought; Science and Medicine; and Sports. Participants can also cast write-in votes. Voting ends Thursday, August 6, so hurry.
Irving Berlin. Levi Strauss. Steven Spielberg. Albert Einstein. Rebecca Gratz. Sandy Koufax. Molly Picon. Which Jewish Americans should be recognized in a major museum exhibition? The National Museum of American Jewish History is inviting you to tell us what you think. Let us know.
The Museum is constructing the new 100,000–square-foot, five-story building on Independence Mall in Philadelphia. It is dedicated to telling the still-unfolding story of Jews in America, who embraced freedom with its choices and challenges as they shaped and were shaped by our nation. The Museum envisions its new home as a place that welcomes all people, inviting them to discover what they have in common with the Jewish experience in America, as well as to explore the features that make this history distinctive.