Federal Inter-Agency Holocaust Remembrance Program

(To go to the Federal Inter-Agency Holocaust Remembrance Program website CLICK HERE)


Federal Inter-agency Holocaust Remembrance Program logo

May 4, 2011 ¤ 11:30 am
Once again at the historic
Lincoln Theatre
1215 U Street, NW
Washington, DC

2011 Holocaust Remembrance poster

The 18th annual Holocaust Remembrance program was held on Wednesday, May 4, 2011, at 11:30 am. The theme for this year’s program was Survival. Our speakers were Sigmund Tobias, Bozenna Urbanowicz Gilbride, and Irene Hasenberg Butter.


Sigmund Tobias Sigmund Tobiaswas born in 1932 in Berlin, Germany. After Kristallnacht in 1938, realizing the dangers for Jews remaining in Germany, his father tried to escape to Belgium. He was captured and imprisoned in the Dachau concentration camp. The only way to be freed was to leave the country. Sigmund and his parents were able to make their way to Shanghai, where they lived for 9½ years until they were able to immigrate to the U.S. Sigmund received his B.A. and M.S. in school psychology from the City College of New York and his PH.D. in clinical psychology from Columbia University. He is now Eminent Research Professor, Department of Educational and Counseling Psychology, University at Albany, State University of New York. In 1988 he returned to Shanghai as a visiting professor at Shanghai Institute of Education where he began writing Strange Haven: A Jewish Childhood in Wartime Shanghai.


Bozenna Urbanowicz Gilbride Bozenna Urbanowicz Gilbridewas born in 1934 to a Polish Catholic family on a farm near Leonowska, Poland (now in Ukraine). In September 1939, the Soviet Union invaded and incorporated eastern Poland, including Bozenna’s village. The Urbanowicz’s farm was made part of a collective under the Soviet communist government. Bozenna’s father hid Jews in his shed during this period. In 1943, after Germany seized the area, Bozenna and her family were shipped to Germany where they used as slave labor. Following the war, the family spent time in a Displaced Persons Camp, finally making it to the United States. In 2010, Bozenna Urbanowicz Gilbride and Inge Auerbacher wrote a book titled Children of Terror. This is the first book collaboratively written by a Polish Christian and a German Jewish survivor of the Holocaust about their Holocaust experiences during World War II.


Irene Hasenberg Butter Irene Hasenberg Butterwas born in Berlin, Germany in 1930. The family moved to Amsterdam, Holland in 1937. They became briefly acquainted with the Frank family and their daughter, Anne Frank. After the Germans invaded and took over Holland in 1940, Irene’s father initiated efforts to obtain a foreign passport or visa from contacts in Sweden. However, the entire Hasenberg family was sent to Westerbork concentration camp in Holland in 1943, then to the Bergen-Belsen concentration camp in Germany in 1944. In January 1945, the Hasenberg family was selected to be exchanged for German nationals held in another country and were transported by train to Switzerland. Unfortunately, Irene’s father died before reaching Switzerland, and she became separated from her mother and brother who were taken to a Swiss hospital for treatment. While she was in a Displaced Person’s Camp in Algeria, her relatives in the U.S. sent for her in December 1945. Irene’s mother and brother arrived in the U.S. a year later. Formerly a public health professor at the University of Michigan she is now retired.


Scott Thuman, Scott Thumanour moderator, is an award-winning reporter covering the White House and Capitol Hill for ABC7 News and News Channel 8. He came to Washington, DC in 2005 and for the past five years has brought viewers an inside look at what goes on behind the scenes locally and in national, political news. Thuman has been on the campaign trail following candidates cross-country leading up to the 2008 election, documented the current administration’s battle over health care and immigration reform, and has uncovered new details on the British Petroleum (BP) oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico and a Russian spy ring.


LOX & VODKA is a widely acclaimed klezmer, Jewish and American music ensemble based in Washington, DC. Since its founding in 1984, LOX & VODKA has performed throughout the United States, as well as at numerous foreign embassies, Presidential events, and more. They provide our musical prelude and postlude, and accompany our vocalists, Sarita Davis, of the Department of Health & Human Services, and Caron Dale, of Lox & Vodka.


On March 18, 2011, John Berry, Director of the Office of Personnel Management sent a memo to the Chief Human Capital Officers of federal agencies explaining the federal government’s support of the Holocaust Remembrance program, asking them “to allow your employees to attend on government time as long as they give proper notice to their manager in advance.” The letter can be viewed or downloaded in PDF format by clicking here. We appreciate the official recognition provided by Director Berry.


This program is free, and open to the public. Federal employees and retired employees are especially encouraged to attend.


Sponsoring Agencies

The 26 federal agencies listed here provide financial and logistical support for the Holocaust Remembrance program:

  • Department of Agriculture
  • Department of Commerce
  • Department of Defense
  • Department of Education
  • Department of Energy
       National Nuclear Security Administration
  • Department of Health and Human Services
       Food and Drug Administration
  • Department of Housing and Urban Development
  • Department of the Interior
  • Department of Justice
  • Department of Labor
  • Department of State
  • Department of Transportation
  • Department of the Treasury
  • Department of Veterans Affairs
  • Broadcasting Board of Governors
  • Customs and Border Protection
  • Environmental Protection Agency
  • Equal Employment Opportunity Commission
  • Federal Communications Commission
  • Federal Emergency Management Agency
  • General Services Administration, National Capital Region
  • National Aeronautics and Space Administration
  • Small Business Administration

[list subject to change]

Programs and other information from several previous years are available.

Last Updated 5/4/2011

Disclaimer (the fine print): Although the Holocaust Remembrance program is sponsored, and funded, by the federal agencies listed above, the site itself has been privately created and funded to support the Inter-agency Organizing Committee. Since the site receives no funding from any government agency, and the site is not subject to review by any government agency, information provided on the site should not be considered as official.
The site was created by Bill Landau. Click here for more information on web hosting and email services. Web hosting and email services for holocaustremembrance.org are contributed by Bill Landau.
Purchases made from Amazon through links on this site result in a small commission which is used towards the cost of hosting and maintaining the Federal Inter-Agency Holocaust Remembrance Program site.


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