The ATZUM family wishes to pay tribute to Ellen Singer, director of ATZUM’s US office, who passed away on June 9th.
Since its founding 11 years ago, Ellen managed ATZUM’s U.S. administrative responsibilities with extraordinary dedication and efficiency – from her home office in Youngsville, N.Y., without salary. Ellen’s work was not “volunteer” in the sense it embodied the highest standards of uncompromising responsibility, even as she met the demands of family and professional life, and engaged a relentless eight-year battle with cancer. Ellen was indeed our colleague in every meaningful expression that relationship might convey.
She was also far more than that to me and to nearly all who worked with and met her. A fine Jewish educator and youth counselor; tirelessly devoted member of varied and diverse Jewish communities and learning groups; wonderfully generous contributor to efforts to address critical human need; unfailing source of plainspoken wisdom wrought frequently with usefully indelicate and unvarnished humor; and perhaps above all a woman, wife and mother of boundless caring and capacity to understand and respond to the pain or need of another. She taught us how to care more deeply, see more clearly, work more resourcefully.
We shall miss her dearly for that fine thinking she brought to our efforts and for her contagious determination to make the worlds of Jewish and other endeavor kinder, gentler, better educated and more decent than we would have been had we not been blessed by her friendship. I earnestly hope ATZUM shall prove worthy of her dedication and on behalf of our staff and the innumerable individuals who benefited from her work, extend tanhumim to Don and Vinny and to Ellen’s family and pray they will find comfort among the mourners of Zion and Yerushalayim.
Yehi zikhra barukh.
Founding Executive Director, ATZUM