The PHAIR Family Circle

"A people will not look forward to posterity, who never look backward to their ancestors." Edmund Burke

Cousin Marty Klapper’s perspective on “Who Is Who” – from his memoir From Four To Forty

PHAIR Cousins! “Friend” Nora Lee Mandel on FaceBook and we’ll include you in the PHAIR Family Circle Group for updated notices, sharing photographs, and cousins’ doings!

The PHAIR Family Circle tries to meet almost annually since 1938, founded by those of our ancestors in the above portrait who came to the United States (which also includes those who didn’t).

For many years since its founding, the cousins met “in the basement” at 682 Eastern Parkway (above) in Brooklyn, where Schatz’s lived above for decades, and sometimes other extended cousins, including Ellmans and Baumgartens. Then, some summers cousins hosted us in their backyards, or we gathered up in the Catskills. Did I miss other recent family get-togethers?

Family Gatherings in 2022 and 2023

Family Gatherings in 2019

Family Circle Mini Meeting 2018 Report

Family Circle Mini Meeting 2013 Report

Family Circle Mini Meeting 2012 Report

Family Circle Mini Meeting 2011 Report

Family Circle Mini Meeting 2009 Report

Family Circle Mini Meeting 2006 Report

PHAIR Cousins' Activities

Cousin Harold Shultz computerized the PHAIR Family Tree, with as complete genealogical information as cousins provide, and is scanning in/uploading photos as well. Cousin, if you're not currently on our “e” mailing list and haven't received a copy of the confidential family tree, let him know and it can be emailed to cousins as a large PDF, which should not be uploaded to the internet on any website. Or purchase the “Family Tree Maker” software, and he will send you the data file. To contribute information and photos and get a copy of the updated tree data, contact him at We welcome long lost relatives to keep our tree current and growing!

Here is the Oral History of the family as told to Cousin Dianne Schwartz by Tanta Alta, with encouragement from Marty Klapper, as she traced how we are descended from one matriarch. You are welcome to do further research into the past, but we memorialize our ancestors by keeping the family in contact for the future. Namesakes are added as annotations to illustrate emotional ties and traditions that are not included in conventional genealogies.


Compiled and Edited by

Dianne Schwartz and Alte Schiller

October, 1965

(Footnotes added, September, 1988. Footnotes updated and expanded August, 1991 by Harold Shultz and Nora Mandel -- and we continue to update and correct them further with input from the family, particularly to add in namesakes.)

We will start to follow the footprints of our ancestors since the year of 1849. That year in the Russian myesteshku (small village or district) of Pogost, Minska gubernyu (Province of Minsk) (1B), lived a widower by the name of Yankiv Meishe Zelikovich with his only daughter (a beautiful girl), Blume Reizul.

At the same time there also lived a widow, Chaye Sore Lefkovich. She had two sons: Biniomin and Rifoel Mordche.

The widower, Yankiv Meishe, and the widow, Chaye Sore were married and a son was born to them who was named Isroel Abe. This was the beginning of our family.

Biniomin, the oldest son of Chaye Sore, was married. Four children were born to him and his wife Chana.

The oldest child was a daughter, Nachama, who married a man named Hirshul. They lived in Luban, had a few children but no one knows what became of them.

Biniomin's second daughter, Rochel, became the wife of Itzche. She was very unhappy and died in childbirth with her first-born. It was a boy who lived only a few months. The woman who nursed and cared for him accidently smothered the baby in her sleep, since it was customary for the nursing children to occupy the same bed as their mother's or nurse's.

Gute (or Gussie, the name by which we knew her) was the third daughter. She married but had no children. Unfortunately, she was incurably ill and spent the latter part of her life in the Incurable Home of Brooklyn. (1C)

The youngest child and only son of Biniomin was Leibel, who with his wife Ethel, lived in Perth Amboy, New Jersey (1). Three children were born to them.

The first child, Simon (Lefkowitz--changed to Lewis), lived in Perth Amboy with his wife before they retired to Florida.(2)

Leibel's daughter, Blanche, is married and has a daughter.(3)

The youngest son (4) was killed in a flight over Germany in the Second World War.

That is as far as it goes with the family of Biniomin, the oldest of the Lefkowitz (Lefkovich) family.

Blume Reizul (the daughter of the widower Yankiv Meishe) married Rifoel Mordche (5), the son of her step-mother (the widow Chaye Sore).

Six children were born to this couple: 1) Chaim Noach; 2) Peshe Leah; 3) Seine Malke; 4) Itzche; 5) Nachame Rive; and the youngest, Yushke.

After the marriage of Blume Reizul and Rifoel Mordche, but prior to their having children, Isroel Abe was born to Yankiv Meishe (father of Blume Reizul) and Chaye Sore (mother of Biniomin and Rifoel Mordche).

Isroel Abe (6) was, during his lifetime, a great scholar. His marriage to Hinda Malke (of Slutsk) produced a number of children of whom only two survived: a son, Schmul Itzche (who lived to the age of 26); and a daughter, Leah (or Alte, the name by which we all know and love her).

Alte was married and lost her husband at a young age. She and her husband, Rudolph Schiller, had two daughters: Hilda and Naomi.(7)

The children of Chaim Noach (8) (the first son of Blume Reizul and Rifoel Mordche) and his wife Gute were: Chaye Rochel (known to us as Ida) (9), Fagel (Fanny), Chana (Helen), Leibel (Louis), and Molly.

Fagel (Fanny) (10) and her husband Abe Serulnick, have two children: Adele (who is married and has a daughter) and Danny (who is married and has two daughters).(11) (An interesting side line--Adele's husband is the cousin of Marty Klapper's wife, Harriet.)

Chana (Helen) is married to Louis Kleger.(12)

Leibel's (Louis) wife was Lillian.(13)

Molly and her husband, Sid Flitt, have two daughters who have children. (12A)

The marriage of Peshe Leah (the second child of Blume Reizul and Rifoel Mordche) to Avrohom Kreitchik was arranged by a shadchan (matchmaker).

Avrohom came from Slutsk where, after his marriage, he and Peshe Leah made their home. Peshe Leah was the first of the children of Blume Reizul and Rifoel Mordche to leave Pogost.

At the time of this marriage, Peshe Leah's mother (Blume Reizul) was alive and both of Avrohom's parents were living. His parents rented land; they were wealthy people who were considered "city-folk". Avrohom died when he was about 36, and in the years following, Peshe Leah suffered great hardships in Russia.

The children of Peshe Leah and Avrohom were: (14)
1) Esther (15)
2) Mirke (Mary) (16)
3) Fagel (17)
4) Falke (Fanny) (18)
5) Yankiv Meishe (who died in infancy)
6) Rifoel Mordche (Philip) (19)
7) Broche (Bertha) (died in her early twenties) (20)
8) Avrohom (Abe) (who was born two weeks after his father's death and was, therefore, named after him.) (21)

When Peshe Leah and her children (except Philip) migrated to the United States, they took on her maiden name-- Lefkowitz. While they were still in Russia, of course, they retained the name of Kreitchik. (This accounts for the reason why "some" of us bear that surname.)

Seine Malke, the third child of Blume Reizul and Rifoel Mordche, married Ora Schwartz. They had no children but "adopted" and raised Rifoel Mordche (Philip) (the second son of Peshe Leah). This, of course, is why his name is Schwartz while his brother's name and sisters' maiden name is Lefkowitz.

Beginning to make sense now---isn't it?)

The marriage of Itzche (the fourth child of Blume Reizul and Rifoel Mordche) has an interesting story. Hinda Malke (wife of Isroel Abe and Alte's mother) had a sister who lived in a dorf (small community). Dviere, the daughter of Hinda Malke's sister, would come to Slutsk to visit her aunt. Itzche lived in Pogost and when he was in Slutsk he came to see his uncle, Isroel Abe (Alte's father). Itzche and Dviere (22) met and fell in love. Hinda Malke tried to discourage them but to no avail, and the marriage took place. (Itzche is paternal first cousin to Alte and Dviere is maternal first cousin to Alte.) They had two daughters, Lillian and Beatrice (23). (A third pregnancy produced twins which did not survive.)

The third daughter (fifth child) of Blume Reizul and Rifoel Mordche was a beautiful girl named Nachame Rive. She had many suitors before she married Ruben Schwartz. Ruben was the brother of Ora Schwartz who married Nachame Rive's older sister, Seine Malke. Nachame Rive and Ruben had three sons: Rifoel Itzche (Little Phil), Marcus, and Harry. (Little Phil and Marcus were born in Europe and Harry was born in the United States.)

While Nachame Rive was pregnant with her first son, she promised that if she had a boy he would be named after Schmul Itzche, Alte's brother. Since it was considered bad luck to name a child after a young person, she used the combination of her father's name, Rifoel Mordche, and that of Schmul Itzche. When Nachame Rive (24) died (giving birth to a fourth child) at the age of 44, Phil (25) was 16, Marcus (26) was 14 and Harry was 8.

Yushke, the youngest (born 1877) of the children of Blume Reizul and Rifoel Mordche, married Chana Fagel.(27) They had five children: Selma (28), Molly (29), Edith (30), Abraham (31), and Blume Reizul (Betty) (died in infancy).

Some of the members of our family migrated to the United States in 1906. In May or June of that year, Esther, her daughter Rose, Mirke (Mary), Rifoel Mordche (Philip), Falke (Fanny), and Tanta Malke (Seine Malke) left Slutsk and traveled to Hamburg, Germany. When they reached Hamburg they had to stay there and wait for a ship to arrive. A week later one did arrive, the "Blickher" (32), which took them to the U.S. (a fourteen day voyage).

Esther's daughter, Rose, came down with the measles while in Hamburg and they both remained until Rose recuperated. When Alte arrived in Hamburg she encountered Esther and Rose and they then journeyed to the U.S. together. They arrived on July 6, 1906.

From here on our family becomes much simpler--relatively speaking, that is. Everyone has a little bit to contribute. Our family tree needs a family.

The "Phair Family Circle” had its start in January 1938.

The Origin of the Name of Our Family Circle:

Philip (1A) cHaim (8) Avrohom (14) Itzche (22) Rifoel (19, 25)

*    *    *  P       H    A       I      R     *   *   *   *   


(Added 9/88. Revised and expanded 8/91. Some interpretations updated 7/2012. Addition 6/1/2018 and 2/24/2022)

NOTE: Each woman is identified with her married name if she uses it. As in Alte's history, most of the dates below are based on the vagaries of memory; this history is not complete or definitive.
For further details, refer to the Family Tree chart.

1A. Some in the family say the Meetings started in 1936, and think that the P in PHAIR is for Peshe Leah, and that makes the most sense because the other names are also Yiddish. (See Footnotes 19 and 25.) Peter Leonard Schwartz is her namesake.

1B. Since 1991, Minsk is in Belarus. Marty Klapper’s memoir recalls his mother Fanny saying they were from Slutsk, also in Belarus.

1C. Presumably The Daughters of Israel - Home for the Incurables, East 49th Street and Rutland Road in East Flatbush, which, with many name changes, became part of Kingsbrook Jewish Medical Center.

1. Leibel emigrated to this country in 1910, when his family name was changed from Lefkovich to Lefkowitz; he became a citizen in 1920 as Louis, and died in 1962. Ethel died in 1982; her great-grandson Todd Evan Napravnik was named for her, and his alternative name of Yosel Leibel, as was Jamie Leigh Mayerowitz, is for their great-grandfather.

2. Simon Lewis died in 1998.

3. Blanche married Louis Mayerowitz, who died in 1983, and had three children, two daughters and a son. Their grandchildren Allison Leslie Snyder, Melanie Lynn Snyder, and Jeffrey Louis Mayerowitz were named for him.

4. Reuben died eleven days after D-Day; Marla Roberta Lewis, Ricki Lewis, and Robin Napravnik were named for their uncle.

5. Richard (Rifoel Mordche) Cohen was named for his great-grandfather.

6. Robert Baumgarten's Hebrew name is Yisroel Abba in memory of Isroel Abe.

7. Unfortunately, we have lost contact with this branch of the family.

8. The family mostly agrees that Chaim is the H in PHAIR.

9. Ida and Fanny accompanied Peshe Leah's family to this country, then sent for three of their younger siblings to come over in 1921 with a chaperone, as they were all orphaned. Ida died in 1988.

10. Fanny Serulnick died in 1979; her namesakes are her great-grandson Michael Foster Serell-Erenbaum and her great-granddaughter Emily Faye Osman. Her husband Abe died in 1965.

11. Danny Serell changed his name from Serulnick. His two daughters named their first children Rachael Osman and Rebecca Serell-Erenbaum for his wife, their mother Rhoda.

12. Helen Kleger died in 1988. Louis was for a long time President of the PHAIR Family Circle.

12A. Molly's namesake is her great-granddaughter Molly Wolman; Sid Flitt’s namesake is Samuel Bier, who also has his great-grandfather’s Hebrew name “Shea”.

13. Louis fought with the Abraham Lincoln Brigade in the Spanish Civil War. (He arrived in Spain April 2, 1937, served with the XV BD and Washington BN units at Jarama, Brunete and was sent to the hospital July 7, 1937); he died in 1988. Lillian died when she was 41.

14. The family agrees that the A in PHAIR is for this Avrohom Mordche. His other namesakes include his grandsons Abe Schatz, Abe Klapper (See Footnote 16), Marty Klapper, Marcus Schwartz, Marcus Lunnin and Marty Ellman (See Footnote 20). Abe Klapper’s namesake is his great-grandson Marshall Asher Neukamm. Marcus Schwartz’s namesake is his great-granddaughter Maia Sophie Nakisbendi Mayers; her sister Aliya Rose Nakisbendi Mayers is the namesake for his wife Rose.

15. Esther Schatz had three children-- Rose (mentioned at the end of this history), who died in 1967, Abraham, who died in 1969, and Benny, who died in 1971. Abe's two children each named their first child for him, Amy Schatz Stinson (who named her two children, Corey Edward Stinson and Emily Alexis Stinson, for Abe's son, her father, Edwin Schatz) and Allison Fox Colpo (who named her daughter Stephanie Colpo for Abe's daughter, her mother, Sheri Schatz Fox).

16. Mary Klapper died in 1970. Her namesakes are her great-granddaughters Amy Michelle Weinberg Lieberman (who named her son Gabriel Seth Lieberman for her grandmother Sylvia Klapper Weinberg, and her grandfather Sam, as did her sister Beth Weinberg Taubman in naming her son Samuel Paul Taubman) and Mierka Drucker (who named her son Maxwell Abraham (Avraham Shaul) Borrello and her daughter Aldyn Lily (Avivah Leonah) Borrello for her father Abe Klapper, and her mother Lillian). Abe Klapper’s wife Lillian is also the namesake of her great-grandson Lucas Collasso Fernandez. Mary’s daughter Shirley Klapper Shultz’s namesakes are: (in the Sephardic tradition) her great-granddaughters Samantha Laura Levy and (in the Ashkenazi tradition) Jamie Sue Levy.

17. Fagel (Florence) Lunin died in 1975.

18. Fanny Klapper, who died in 1965, married her sister Mary's husband's brother -- the second instance that the family has of two brothers marrying two sisters.

19. Always referred to in the family as "Big Phil," he died in 1979. (His namesake is his great-granddaughter Maya Rose Shapiro; his wife Zelda’s namesake is her great-granddaughter Arielle Zoe Shapiro.) Some in the family think that he, or his grandfather Rifoel Mordche more likely, is either the P, less likely, or R, most likely, in PHAIR. (See Footnotes 1A and 25.)

20. Bertha Ellman died in 1922, when her son Marty was only three; he died in 1986. Barbara Ellman was named for her grandmother. Marty Klapper Fernandez was named for Marty Ellman; she named her daughter Ada Joelle Neukamm for her uncle Joel Drucker.

21. Abraham (Abe) Marcus Lefkowitz, who died in 1955, had two children who each named their first child for him, Alan Mark Strauber and Adrianne (Aviva) Michelle Lefkowitz Roy.

22. Itzche, who, everyone in the family agrees, is the I in PHAIR, emigrated about 1915 and settled in Saco, Maine; his wife and daughters joined him there in 1923. When he died in 1935, they came to Brooklyn to be with the rest of the family. Dviere (Dora) died in 1946.

23. Bea died in 1956.

24. Her namesakes include Nancy Mayers and Naomi Schiller, who was born the same week that Nachame Rive died.

25. "Little Phil", who died in 1960, has several namesakes, including his grandson Philip Pactor, grand-niece Andrea Phyllis Schwartz, and grand-nephews Michael Philip Schwartz and Philip Schwartz. Some in the family think that he, or his grandfather Rifoel Mordche more likely, is either the P, less likely, or R, most likely, in PHAIR. (See Footnotes 1A and 19.)

26. Marcus, an orthopedist, died in 1979. His great-grandson Zachary Marc Knudson is his namesake. His great-granddaughter Tessa Rose Knudson is named for his wife Rose.

27. Yushke, who was known to everyone as Joe Lefkowitz, emigrated to this country in 1903, before his wife. He died in 1969. His namesakes include his great-grandson Jason Baumgarten and great-granddaughter Joy Lefferts Neimark.

28. Selma Creston died in 1987.

29. Molly Baumgarten died in 1981.

30. Edith Cohen died in 1982.

31. Abe Lefkowitz changed his name to Alan Lefferts. His namesakes are great-grandsons Darren Alex Neimark and Beck Alexander Lefferts. His wife Anne’s namesakes are their grandsons Aidan Neimark and Austin Lefferts.

32. The ship may have been the Hamburg American Line’s SS Blücher. Help Cousins find the manifest!

Family Gatherings in 2022 and 2023
The extended Schatz branch had a backyard get-together June 2023.
Many PHAIR cousins attended the yahrzheit memorial to President Shirley Shultz in Queens, NY, April 2023.
After an informal meet-up in Summer 2022 in Baltimore, the Mid-Atlantic Regional Division of Klapper/Lefkowitz/”Big Phil” Schwartz Branches gathered in August 2023, again at the lovely home of Cousins Danielle Schwartz & Bruce Shapiro.

Family Gatherings in 2019
We held a de facto Family Circle Meeting in 2019 – at the yahrzheit memorial to Iris Lee Klapper in Boulder, Colorado, where family, friends, co-workers, and students shared memories of her life force and energy. Her brother Norman organized the event and had posted her obituary. We were pleased to introduce her daughter Skylar and granddaughter Roslynn to the PHAIR Family Circle. This year, many cousins also gathered at the wedding of Eliav & Jessie Levy near Denver, Colorado, and at the bar mitzvah of Gabe Lieberman in Newton, Massachusetts.

Family Circle Mini-Meeting 2018 Report
Alan and Bernice Strauber organized a deli brunch in Midtown Manhattan on September 23. Norman Klapper and Helen Toper came the farthest, from Boulder, Colorado, bringing a pile of his father Marty’s family photo albums, and reporting on family meeting videos he has posted for dropbox access. Norm skyped in his mother Harriet from home; Barbara Ellman skyped in her brother Eric from London; Marilyn Weinberg skyped in her brother Chuck from Vancouver, Canada. We’re open to suggestions for where to hold the next meeting! (10/21/2018)

Family Circle Mini-Meeting 2013 Report
Alan Strauber organized a deli brunch in Midtown Manhattan on June 23. Pam and Stewart Loeb came the farthest, from their retirement acreage in Vermont. We welcomed cousins we hadn’t seen since a meeting at the Nevele: Gary and Sue Lefferts, who brought news of new grandchildren to add to the Family Tree, and Marlene and Richard Cohen, who brought scans of old photographs for elder cousins to identify. Suggestions to help increase participation in our 2014 meeting are welcome! (6/23/2013)

Family Circle Mini-Meeting 2012 Report
Alan Strauber organized a Klezmer Brunch in downtown Manhattan at the City Winery for an intimate gathering of cousins on June 3rd. Adrianne Lefkowitz and Ben Shultz, with his wife Dina Mishra, came the farthest, from the Washington D.C. metro area. All kvelled at a preview copy of Marty Klapper’s memoir From Four To Forty. (7/1/2012)

Family Circle Mini-Meeting 2011 Report
Alan Strauber organized a Klezmer Brunch in downtown Manhattan at the City Winery for 25 cousins. Jonni Klapper came the farthest, from Tampa, FL, and her daughter Marty Fernandez, down from Boston, was the youngest. All enjoyed identifying relatives in photo albums of Family Circle meetings going back to 1979, and corrected the unfurled Family Tree. (3/7/2011)

Family Circle Mini-Meeting 2009 Report
Alan Strauber organized a brunch at Ben's Deli in Manhattan for 17 cousins. Danielle Schwartz Shapiro came the farthest, from Baltimore, and Eliav Levy was the youngest. We were delighted to welcome first-timers: Marla Lewis and Robin Napravnik, representing a new generation of the descendants of the Biniomin Lefkovich branch of the family (formerly referred to as the Perth Amboy group) and Carol Rogovin and Nancy Nathanson, the daughters of Molly and Sid Flitt. Dianne Schwartz recounted how she first undertook an oral history of the Circle, which was the basis for the computerized family tree that attendees updated. (corrected 9/11/2013)

Family Circle Meeting 2006 Report

For the first time in 68 (maybe 70) years, the PHAIR Family Circle met outside the New York area, or as Meeting Chair Shirley Shultz proclaimed The mountain has come to Mohammed, as the largest gathering in years came to Washington, D.C., around where many family members now reside. Over 30 extended family members attended with occasional rain not interfering at all -- from grandparents to babies to significant others, mispochah and m'chootenem, and even a dog. Joanne Weinberg came the farthest - from Vancouver, thanks to a congruent presentation at a professional meeting in Baltimore. Alan Strauber had researched the very reasonable accommodations and lovely restaurant for dinner. The Taubmans graciously hosted a Sunday brunch to conduct family business. We viewed a slide show of past meetings, reported on the doings of those unable to attend, memorialized passings and congratulated recent graduates, new jobs and volunteer commitments, and updated photos of the fast-growing children for the displayed family tree. (updated 6/30/2006)

PHAIR Cousins' Activities
Getting to know you -- to bring our history more up to date, here's more about your family members. Let us know to add yours!

Brian Cohen is the author of the novel The Life O'Reilly. He was named to the 2024 edition of “Best Lawyers in America” for Commercial Litigation with LachtmanCohen

Jonathan Cohen competes in Marathons, triathlons, and “Iron Man” competitions.

Bill Creston had a career as a multi-media artist.

His 1977 film Taxi, Taxi (14 mins) was included in the shorts program “Moving Through the Metropolis: Transit Images” in Film at Lincoln Center’s May 2024 series Seeing the City: Avant-Garde Visions of New York. (His partner Barbara Rosenthal, who collaborated on the film as actor (see still above), camera operator, and extra writer, noted a “less vibrant print” is available on YouTube .) He died a month after the program at age 92.

Ola Creston and her husband George Brittenburg encourage Community-Supported Agriculture through their organic Taproot Farm. Meet them and buy their certified organic produce at Philadelphia area farmers’ markets.

Sena Clara Creston is a visual artist and teaches at Sonoma State University.

Eric Ellman preserves an English canal boat for arts and educational uses.
When he was executive director of Big River Foundation, leading kayakers on the Rio Grande and Casa Blanca Lake through Big River Outfitters, he was quoted in The New York Times: Some Texans Say Border Fence Will Sever Routine by Ralph Blumenthal on 6/20/2007:
“In an unusual step in the booming border crossroads city of McAllen, the federal Fish and Wildlife Service has taken a role in the debate, providing a rare permit to, Los Caminos del Rio (Ways of the River), to run scheduled biking and kayaking outings into the long-restricted Lower Rio Grande National Wildlife Refuge. Members have to announce their visits ahead of time to tip off the Border Patrol and assure protection from the human smugglers who infest the refuge — like, for example, the three jumpy fellows who had just crossed the river from Mexico the other evening to stash a bag of dry clothes for nightfall. Eric Ellman, executive director of the 17-year-old Los Caminos group, said the strategy was akin to that devised in New York City at the height of the 1970s crime wave. ‘Legal activity will displace illegal activity,’ Mr. Ellman said, maintaining that the presence of ecotourists would make the refuge less appealing to illegal immigrants and drug smugglers.
A morning spent biking and kayaking the refuge with about a dozen members of Los Caminos showcased the diversity of the wildlife. As Lori Humphreys, executive secretary of the group, led the group with an S.U.V. full of gear, and Mel Piñeda, a consultant, followed in a pickup loaded with kayaks, a herd of javelinas bolted into the mesquite. A turkey buzzard circled overhead along with menacing-looking tarantula wasps that lay their eggs inside tarantulas also in evidence from a dried carcass at the side of the road.”

Marty Fernandez, PhD, conducts biomedical research as a Senior Scientist for a small startup in Boston.

Bonnie Klapper Goldenberg wrote a book about her father Abe Klapper's WWII experience, serving in the U.S. Army in an antiaircraft battalion, based on the more than 800 letters her parents exchanged during his service in an antiaircraft battalion in the First Army. In 2003, her mother Lillian unexpectedly gave her shopping bags full of their letters. None of their four children had known the letters existed until then. Love, Abe: A Jewish GI's World War II Letters Home is written from the perspective of a first-generation American Jew sent to fight the Nazis in Germany, through details of daily life in postwar occupied Germany. Published in Spring 2022, it is available from Amazon, in physical form and on Kindle, and on Barnes & Noble’s Nook. She is doing readings and signings around Los Angeles. She was interviewed by Madelaine Sarisky for Thousand Oaks Acorn “How a tattered bag of letters became a book”, in print and audio, August 19, 2022.
Here’s the cover and Abe’s draft registration card:

Sam Goldenberg described his academic experience at the London School of Economics, where he earned a MSc Conflict Studies. He was awarded a PhD in Political Science, Conflicts at the University of Arizona in 2023, with a dissertation on “Industrialized Martyrdom: Group Development, State Military Capability, and the Modern Proliferation of Suicide Terror.”

Marty Klapper’s memoir From Four To Forty: and then some is available in print and free digital download.

Dr. Robert Klapper is an orthopedic surgeon, and podcasts on ESPN Radio’s Weekend Warrior.

Zac Marc [Knudson] is The Glass Artist in Coral Springs, FL.

Tessa Knudson is a cannabis herbalist in New Mexico, doing business as "The Hemp Witch".

Maxine Shultz Levy has volunteered with WomenHeart. Her involvement led her (and her family) to be featured on the NBC News about heart disease prevention and treatment for women.

Marla Lewis is a musician, entertaining children and families, available here. Her song “Leap of Faith” is on the Grammy-winning All About Bullies. . .Big and Small CD. In 2013, she released an EP Cocoa! -
In 2016, she released two albums: I Love To Talk To Plants - and We All Laugh in the Same Language -
In 2021 and 2023, she released Songbook Volumes 1 and 2 -
In 2024, she is releasing The Elephant In My Room & Other Love Songs -

Ricki Lewis is an event planner in Los Angeles.

Amy Weinberg Lieberman, Associate Professor, and Director of Doctoral Studies and the Language Acquisition and Visual Attention Lab, was featured in a Boston University piece “Getting the Word in: BU Deaf Studies researchers look for ways to prevent deaf children from being deprived of language” on 3/6/2017, by Elizabeth Dougherty, on the School of Education’s Deaf Studies Program:
”Acceptance of ASL as a language was a fundamental first step toward preventing language deprivation, because it validated the teaching of ASL to deaf babies and children. The developing brain responds to language no matter how it is presented, so exposure to ASL is equivalent to exposure to a spoken language. ‘The same brain regions and mechanisms perceive and acquire language regardless of the modality,’ says Lieberman. . . There is also a notion that deaf children struggle with reading because they can’t sound out words. This connection between written language and sounds is called phonological coding. But according to research Lieberman did before she came to BU, this is also a misconception. ‘Many skilled deaf readers do not have access to phonological coding,’ she says. ‘They clearly have alternate routes to reading, most likely having a foundation in sign language.’…
One of the biggest challenges for educators and researchers who want to improve deaf education is figuring out how to detect language deprivation. This would not only help researchers understand the scale of the problem but also help them guide deaf children and their parents to services that can smooth the way to introducing sign language. A first step, being taken by [Naomi] Caselli, Lieberman, and Jennie Pyers, a visiting faculty member from Wellesley College, is to develop an ASL test for children under five. With new funding from the National Institute on Deafness and other Communication Disorders, part of the National Institutes of Health (NIH), they plan to work initially with deaf children who have deaf parents…
For parents of deaf children, job one—aside from learning the language itself—is getting the child’s attention. ‘It seems simple, but parents need to learn how to manage their child’s gaze,’ says Lieberman. Deaf babies who learn sign language from their parents learn to manage their attention by the time they reach preschool, according to earlier research by Lieberman. ‘They look up to see a sign and down to connect the sign to an object,’ she says. ‘They do so in meaningful and purposeful ways.’
Since eye movements reveal a lot about how deaf children process and learn language, Lieberman developed a set of studies using techniques that track eye movements and is continuing this research with a grant from the NIH. She and her research team, which includes both deaf and hearing researchers, are focused on deaf children as young as 18 months and up to five years to understand how and when they learn words. The study will include both deaf children with deaf parents and deaf children with hearing parents. “We want to look at the full spectrum of deaf children, looking carefully at the quantity and quality of language exposure they’re receiving,” says Lieberman. ‘How do those two measures correlate with the ability to develop visual attention skills and new words?’ Not only will this research help develop milestones for detecting language deprivation, it will also help develop interventions for children who are falling behind. An outcome could be an educational program, or tips for parents that help them manage their child’s gaze. ‘Without looking, there’s no language,’ says Lieberman.”

Pam Strauber Loeb co-authored Dogs Outside the Ring: The Dogs That Serve, published June 2023, information available on purchase.

JoDee [Judith Schwartz] March is an interior designer with Big Sky ReDesign in Montana.

Aydin Mayers is a certified ganjier – a cannabis sommelier and educator.
In May 2023, he told The Highest Critic about his work: “Resin Tree Collective was started to create intimate events and experiences that allow for guests to have the opportunity to not only consume high end cannabis safely and socially but also receive a full experience with intentional food pairings and education, different than that of just a lounge.”

Dr. Michael Mayers and his wife Dr. Leyla Nakisbendi are dentists in practice together.

Gabrielle Schwartz Miller is a QVC host, filmmaker, and started the family business Word Nerd, making fun, wordy T-shirts. A portion of their profits go to local libraries.

Bonni Pactor at Connect Me, Capital provides recruit services for the financial industry.

Adrianne Lefkowitz Roy works for U.S. Dept. of Agriculture’s Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service.

Danielle Schwartz Shapiro was quoted in The New York Times Magazine, 6/7/2013 “Innovations Issue”, at “T is for Turnstile” about her research on industrial designer John Vassos. Her book John Vassos: Design for Modern Life was published by University of Minnesota Press in 2016; Choice Magazine of the American Library Association chose it as an Outstanding Title in History and Technology of the year.
She gave talks with signings at book stores, libraries, and museums in Baltimore, MD; New York City; Haddonfield, NJ; Wallingford PA; and Washington, D.C., as well as in Connecticut, Delaware, at NASA’s Goddard Space Center, and on “When Radio Was New: John Vassos and Design for Mass Media” on January 15, 2022 at The Wolfsonian–FIU (museum at Florida International University) in association with the Miami Design Preservation League as part of Art Deco Weekend .. Check her Vassos updates on her blog.
”Vintage Industrial Design” was the headline for her interview in The New York Times, 6/3/2016, with Eve M. Kahn about her book and June 14, 2016 talk at the New York Public Library, with many PHAIRs kvelling in attendance, accompanied by friends, collectors, and John Vassos’s grand-niece. Thanks to cousin Alan Strauber for these photos of Dr. Shapiro informatively elucidating her slides and signing a book for cousin Marilyn Weinberg:
For her earlier research, she got coverage in Cox News Service, Inappropriate Banter by Robert Kelly-Goss on June 25, 2006: "So what's happening in the culture? Cell phones are now commonplace yet there appears to be a strain of discontent in how and when the communication devices are used. 'People are reacting to people bringing private business into public spaces,' said Danielle Schwartz, Ph.D., an analyst with Context Research, a Baltimore, Md., consumer-research group.
Context recently conducted a study titled The Mobiles: Social Evolution in a Wireless Society. In that study researchers looked at the way wireless technology is changing the culture, specifically younger generations. In short, the study presents a new culture of technologically savvy youth who have incorporated cell phone technology into the fabric of their day-to-day existence. 'Cell phones create a subculture of teens who relate and talk to each other outside of their parents' watch,' Schwartz said. . .Robbie Blinkoff, the anthropologist who led Context's study, told Wired Magazine that teenagers who are immersed in cell phone technology do not see much difference between personal, face-to-face conversations or talking on a cell phone. Those teens, therefore, are on the cutting edge of a new culture that will potentially grow into their adult lives with values and understanding of societal norms different from the preceding generations. 'Communication is now different from what their parents experienced, Schwartz said. . .
Context's Blinkoff also told Wired Magazine that according to his study he doesn't perceive teens as being intentionally rude. Rather, they represent a "digital divide," a sort of technological have and have not. And Schwartz added that they are 'reacting to new technology. The rules have to come from within the culture,' Schwartz said of cell phone use. And that could take time because technology does change rapidly these days and sometimes with that rapid change comes a change in rules. 'It's almost like when any new technology immerges, we don't know how to handle it,' Schwartz said. But eventually we will."
Her graceful transition to becoming Danielle Shapiro was covered in Baltimore’s Jewish Times.

Dianne Schwartz co-founded and manages Realization Center and has posted on its blog. Per Dianne:

Dianne joined forces with Marilyn White in 1988 to actualize the development and expansion of Realization Center. Dianne, a CPA in her first career, is now a seasoned clinician and because of her recovery and the suffering that comes with food addiction, her interest and passion is food addiction recovery.

Realization Center is the oldest and largest outpatient addictions treatment program in Manhattan and Brooklyn Heights. It is a unique, comprehensive, full service outpatient addictions treatment program that offers specialized treatment for men’s, women’s, and adolescent’s substance abuse issues, food addiction/eating disorders, co-dependency, gambling, sexual compulsivity, as well as numerous mental health issues such as depression, anxiety, post traumatic stress, sexual trauma, family of origin issues, domestic violence, anger and stress management, school or job difficulties, family conflict, parenting difficulties and relationship problems as they relate to chemical dependence. The Center is dedicated to the healing of the human spirit through a profound and very real emotional recovery.

Dianne developed the True Recovery Food Addiction Treatment Program at Realization Center and has been offering a 15 week lecture series for all clients on the relationship between their eating behavior and their alcoholism and/or drug addiction, how their eating affects their sobriety and potential for relapse and how it all began. Over time, as the reputation of the Food Addiction Treatment Program grew, individuals who had eating problems and did not use alcohol or drugs came into the program, and realized treatment success in food addiction recovery. Dianne’s book It’s Not Broccoli, True Recovery From Food Addiction is an outgrowth of that series.

Dianne can be found in the Center daily devoted to helping people recover and lead fulfilling, productive lives.
The 45th Annual Addictions Institute- Innovations in Addictions Treatment: Shifting Patterns for Changing Times to be held on June 5th! [2013] ‘Exploring the Real Culprits in Food Addiction – It’s Not Broccoli!’”
Mazel Tov to Dianne for publication of The Big Book of True Recovery From Food Addiction and Beyond: It’s not Broccoli (The Realization Center, 2022). For More information, and to purchase at: Amazon and Barnes & Noble Online. Promotional interviews include: Dr. Ronald Hoffman’s Intelligent Medicine podcast.

Avi, Ben, and Harold Shultz - updates.

Shirley Klapper Shultz, Family Circle “President”, celebrated her 95th birthday with the PHAIR family via Zoom in September 2021 (with IT help from Harold and Maxine):
Sadly, our “President” died soon after, in February 2022. Here, she presided over a backyard “Family Circle Meeting” in 1986, with her first Cousin Peter Schwartz on the left, who passed away in 2021:

Alan Strauber is an historian and historic preservationist:
In February 2022: “I am very excited to announce that I have been elected President of the Merestead Conservancy, a newly formed friends group working in concert with the County of Westchester and Westchester County Parks to support and advance the historic 130 acre Merestead estate located in Bedford, NY (Mount Kisco address), home of the Sloane family of W & J Sloane notoriety. That firm provided furniture for the White House, Waldorf Astoria Hotel, the original Metropolitan Opera House, Washington Irving’s Sunnyside home and much more. The main Georgian style house was designed by the firm of Delano & Aldrich in 1907 (designers of John D. Rockefeller’s Kykuit, drawings for the NY Public Library, Laguardia Airport’ Marine Air Terminal and more). The estate includes a working farm complex featuring a mid-nineteenth century farmhouse and multiple barns, miles of nature trails, gardens and a variety of out buildings. The Conservancy will develop cultural and educational programs for the public as well as spearhead numerous restoration projects at the site in cooperation with Westchester County. The estate has enormous potential to serve the residents of Westchester and all of New York State. I am thrilled to be playing a leading role!”

He created and is coordinating an historic preservation certificate program at Westchester Community College that was featured on the front page of the Rockland Westchester News on 12/17/2021.
”Robert Moses in the Hudson Valley, at the Staatsburg Library, Staatsburg, NY, on Wednesday, January 9, 2019, admission is free to the general public: Alan Strauber will be discussing Robert Moses’ presence in the Hudson Valley, including research and perspective on the Moses directed acquisition of properties in Staatsburg such as the Hoyt family estate. Robert Moses served as chairman of the New York State Council of Parks from 1924 until the 1960’s, along with his many other positions, often held simultaneously. Those posts formed the basis of his vast influence over public works projects in New York State during that period. Strauber is on the adjunct U.S. History faculty at Marist College and Westchester Community College, specializing in the late nineteenth and twentieth centuries. He is the proprietor of HV Historic Preservation and the principal founder of Calvert Vaux Preservation Alliance. Strauber is a long time advocate for the preservation of historic architecture and landscape design in New York State, particularly the Hudson Valley region.”
Historic building gets needed TLC by Kathleen Di Simone in the 12/26/2008 of The Hyde Park The Hoyt House was left dilapidated for decades. That is, until Alan Strauber arrived on the scene.
Strauber is a U.S. history professor at Hunter College who said he first saw the house about eight years ago while hiking the surrounding property at Margaret Norrie State Park in Staatsburg. "I came over the hill and saw this stunning house," he said of his first encounter. But he also noticed it was "obviously in need of repairs."
After talking with the New York State Office of Parks, Recreation and Historic Preservation, Strauber began collecting information about the history of the Hoyt House and details of its ownership. The house was designed by Calvert Vaux, an architect and landscape designer whose other projects included Central Park and Prospect Park. Vaux was hired to design the house for a wealthy man named Lydig Hoyt and his wife in the 1850s. Strauber said the house had been purchased by the parks department later on, in the 1900s, after residents were convinced to move off the property so it could be used as part of the park.
He then formed the Calvert Vaux Preservation Alliance, consisting of himself and other citizens who had an interest in saving the house. The committee was then recognized by the State of New York Office of Parks, Recreation and Historic Preservation as the "officially authorized friends group of the Hoyt House," said Strauber. He explained that this puts the group in charge of collecting money to repair the building.
After less than a decade, the house's first phase of repairs is complete. Stones were restored to the back wall of the house as well as the front. Strauber said that some of the stones may have possibly been "carted off by ... vandals." "This is going to take more time and more funds. This is just the beginning," said Strauber. He explained that the committee plans to finish repairs on the outside of the house, then move on to fixing up the interior. Strauber explained that though the state will not sell the property, it will lease it to an applicant who plans to use the house for "adaptive reuse." He suggested that an adventurous entrepreneur consider using the house for such business as a bed and breakfast, which has been proposed by some parties of interest. He also mentioned the possibility of a school or institute using the house as a research facility.
Strauber's motivation for saving the house is sincere, and in keeping with a U.S. history buff's intentions. "(The house) is important and sits in the middle of the Hudson Valley landmark district," said Strauber, who called the district "an important historic area, not only for New York state, but for this country." He continued by saying, "There's no plausible reason for this house to be in the condition it's been in for the last 40 years or so." Strauber said the Calvert Vaux Preservation Alliance plans to schedule a fundraiser this coming summer to gain more support for further repairs on the house. "We're not at the end yet," Strauber said. "It's in progress but we're off to a really good start with this work, and there will be more."
The Poughkeepsie saluted him on 12/29/2008: "To the group restoring the historic Hoyt House in Staatsburg for completing the first phase. Located only a few miles north of Hyde Park within the Margaret Lewis Norrie State Park, the Gothic Revival structure, originally known as "The Point," was designed in 1855 by architect Calvert Vaux for Lydig Hoyt and his wife, Blanche Geraldine Livingston.
The house fell into disrepair in the 1960s. Recent work on the structure has included replacing fallen stone and masonry on the house's north wall and front portico section, said Alan Strauber, president of the Calvert Vaux Preservation Alliance, a nonprofit organization dedicated to the preservation and restoration of Hoyt House.
The first phase of restoration work was completed with the assistance of the state Office of Parks Recreation and Historic Preservation. Support was provided by the Friends of Mills Mansion and the National Trust for Historic Preservation. The Hoyt House is within walking distance to Mills Mansion.
"This is just the beginning," Strauber said. "There is much more work to be done to return the Hoyt House to its full grandeur as a jewel of the mid-Hudson Valley. With the continued support and expansion of our member and donor base in the coming year, we will push toward completing this mission." A spring fundraiser concert on the lawn of the Hoyt House is planned."
He has also helped establish the Vauxwatch, a watch list of architectural and landscape design sites affiliated with Vaux and his nineteenth century contemporaries. These are sites that are endangered or would benefit from closer monitoring.

Bernice Lefkowitz Strauber found this New York Times clipping of a congratulatory advertisement from the contractors on the opening of “Big Phil” Schwartz’s Brooklyn Steel Warehouse's new building, where Lawrence Lefkowitz, among other family members, worked. Thanks to Alan Strauber for the digitization:

Dr. Charles Weinberg. His movie marketing work is referenced:
In a co-written Los Angeles Times Op-Ed on 3/11/2022: “What superhero can swoop in to save movie theaters?...For studios, the biggest risk may come from not vertically integrating.”
In this academic overview of the field. Here's the National Post on his award-winning movie research that's being successfully implemented in Amsterdam: The long and the short of successful movies: UBC professor applies game theory to cinema bookings "Vancouver - The way Charles Weinberg sees it, the Hollywood film business is like a $6-billion game of chicken. Schedule your modest little no-name art movie against a mega-budget, star-studded Hollywood epic that spends tens of millions on hype and you're going to get run right off the road.
Before you dismiss Mr. Weinberg, a marketing professor at University of British Columbia, as just another pop culture buff with lots of opinions, consider this: He has perfected a system for predicting the staying power of hit movies, and it works.
'I certainly couldn't tell you how to make a great movie,' says Mr. Weinberg. 'But I could tell you, once you had a great movie, how to capitalize on its value.'
The mathematics expert says he has applied game theory -- the analysis of competitive strategies where choices depend on the actions of others -- to develop an analytical model called 'Silverscreener' theatre chains can use to decide how long they should book films.
Because movies have a relatively short shelf life, theatres need to squeeze as much revenue out of them as they can. 'Unlike a lot of products that build up over a period of time, movies decline in popularity,' Mr. Weinberg says.
The cinema business is intensely competitive. Theatres often bid to show certain films even months before the movie has been released and before the theatre knows how popular the movie will be. Mr. Weinberg's system involves grading films on the basis of several criteria, including star power, genre, director and rating. Using analytical mathematics, Mr. Weinberg then predicts how the film will fare over an eight-week period. The prediction is honed each week as box office data become available.

A cinema chain in Holland recently experimented with Mr. Weinberg's Silverscreener and found that a theatre using the system outperformed two theatres that relied solely on the manager's instincts. The Dutch chain is planning a second test using a greater number of theatres.
Hollywood could use his help. A typical movie for the mass market costs about US$75-million, of which two-thirds is devoted to marketing alone. The majority of movies do not earn enough to cover their costs. Studios count on blockbusters to subsidize the money-losers through high box office sales and successful spinoffs from books, videos and merchandise relating to the movie. But, so far, major studios and North American cinema chains have not come seeking his advice.
Some of Mr. Weinberg's earliest marketing research in the 1970s focused on symphony and live theatre subscriptions. From there, he became intrigued by the short shelf of movies and the games movie studios play in marketing them. His research suggests that Hollywood studios err by focusing too much of their marketing efforts on the film's opening weekend. The studios, which on average make about 25% of a film's total gross in the opening weekend alone, should instead try to spread out their revenue, he says. They should work to give a movie the 'legs' so it has a longer shelf life with consumers.
Mr. Weinberg says his research provides cinema executives with some tools to help predict the film's popularity. Theatres split box office proceeds between themselves and the movie studio. In the first week, for example, the studio can take as much as 90% of the proceeds while the theatres get only 10%. With each successive week, the theatre gets a bigger share of the proceeds. Mr. Weinberg says his Silverscreener system gives theatres tools to pick the films that have the longest shelf life, bringing in a steadier stream of revenue.
Of course, theatre managers could rely on their gut instincts. But Mr. Weinberg says his system can speed up decision making by focusing on key variables. He says it also develops alternative outcomes, so it can prevent managers from overlooking something."
His research on movie marketing continues through 2016. He presented a paper on “Hollywood Movies in China: An Empirical Analysis of Entry and Box Office Performance" at the 18th Annual Mallen Economics of Filmed Entertainment Conference in New York City.

Updated 6/19/2024

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