Issue 5: Spring 2015 Authors

  • Rony Bognar

    Rony Bognar Bio Photo


    Rony Bognar has been the Volunteer Manager at the Sydney Jewish Museum for 12 years. Born in Israel and the child of Holocaust Survivors, Rony has constantly worked and/or volunteered in Jewish organizations for the betterment of the Sydney Jewish Community and Israel.  Rony’s involvement with the Women’s International Zionist Organization (WIZO) led her to her role there as President of WIZO New South Wales for 5 years (1992 – 1997), and then President of WIZO Australia for 6 years (1998 – 2004).

    From 1995 to 2002, Rony was the Volunteer Coordinator for Aged Services at JewishCare. From there, she moved on to the Sydney Jewish Museum, where she works with volunteers, supporting all aspects of museum life.  As Volunteer Manager, working with a team of 220 volunteers, she is especially proud of the unique Survivor Focus Group, which she co-founded in 2006. She continues to co-facilitate this group.

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  • Maureen DeLorenzo

    Maureen DeLorenzo


    Maureen DeLorenzo is a Geriatric Care Manager at Alpert Jewish Family and Children’s Services. She graduated with a Masters degree in Social Work and certification in Jewish Communal Services from Yeshiva University’s Wurzweiller School of Social Work in New York. Maureen is also a registered health coach through the Institute for Integrative Nutrition. Maureen has nearly ten years of experience working in the Jewish community, advocating and fundraising for social service programs for vulnerable Jewish communities worldwide. Most recently, Maureen’s career shifted from Jewish philanthropy and community organizing to clinical practice. Currently, Maureen is pursuing her passion of supporting older adults and their families through challenging times by providing Holocaust survivors with care management.

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  • Dr. George Halasz

    Dr. George Halasz

    Article: Reflections from Son of Saul to Son of Alice
    Beshert-It Was Meant to Be
    Trauma in a Residential Setting
    Manifestations of Generational Trauma

    Dr. Halasz is a child and adolescent psychiatrist, consultant and adjunct senior lecturer at the School of Psychology and Psychiatry, Faculty of Medicine, Nursing and Health Sciences at Monash University. He also has a private psychiatry practice.

    From 1992-2005, Dr. Halasz was a member of the editorial boards of the Australian and New Zealand Journal of Psychiatry, as well as the Australasian Psychiatry journal, where he continues to maintain his membership. He has co-edited three books and a number of chapters and journal articles on a range of developmental and psychiatric conditions. He contributed to “The Power of Witnessing: Reflections, Reverberations, and Traces of the Holocaust,” (eds. N. R. Goodman & M. B. Meyers, Routledge, 2012), based on his mother’s VHF Holocaust testimony. Dr. Halasz has appeared on television and radio, including ABC TV documentaries “Compass and Catalyst,” “All in the Mind” and “Encounter”. Finally, he is a regular panellist on the Triple ‘R’s ‘Radiotherapy’ since the 1990s.

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  • Judith Hassan

    Judith Hassan

    Article: Conference Presentation: End of Life

    Judith Hassan was awarded a Bachelors of Science in Human Relations (Joint Honours in Psychology and Sociology), followed by a postgraduate qualification at London University in Social Work (Distinction). Ms. Hassan has worked for 43 years at Jewish Care in England. Her role as director of services for Holocaust Survivors and Refugees there included ongoing direct practice, supervision of a multidisciplinary team and the leadership and management of services.

    For 36 years she pioneered and developed specialist therapeutic services for Holocaust survivors and refugees in partnership with those who suffered in the Shoah. Her endeavours consist of the establishment of Shalvata in 1990, and the Holocaust Survivors’ Centre in London in 1993. Her book, “A House Next Door to Trauma,” documents her internationally renowned research on survivor trauma and on those working with survivors. For the past 20 years she has directly worked with refugees from the Bosnian war, served as consultant to the Rwandan Survivors Service, as well as with other professionals in Europe to develop expertise on war related trauma. She has been a key presenter and organiser at international conferences in Europe and in Israel. In 2007, Ms. Hassan was awarded the National Care Awards Lifetime Achievement in Care, and in 2008 she was made an OBE by the Queen for her services to Holocaust Survivors.

    Ms. Hassan is currently Special Advisor on Therapeutic Services for survivors and refugees from war trauma. She provides consultation for professionals working with refugees from Darfur and with Holocaust survivors.

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  • Aviva Lion

    Aviva Lion
    Aviva Lion

    Article: Looking Back, Being Here and Glimpsing at the Future: Eleven Years in the Life of a Group of Women Survivors, Under the Auspices of AMCHA

    Born in Bucharest, Romania, Ms. Lion is a Holocaust survivor who immigrated to Palestine in August 1944 on the Morino, the only one of three boats that arrived safely from Constantinople.  She is also a wife and mother of three.  From 1948 until 1961, she worked for the Absorption Department of the Jewish Agency and then, having achieved social work training, worked at the Ministry of Social Affairs as supervisor.  In 1968, Ms. Lion was appointed Director of Adoption Services for the State of Israel, and also completed a Master’s degree in Social Work from the University of Wisconsin, Milwaukee.   During the Six Day War and Yom Kippur War, she volunteered to help amputees and bereaved families.

    Ms. Lion is one of the founders of the National Council for the Child, Tzad Kadima, and a Hungarian program for children with motor handicap in Budapest, as well as many organizations involved with the welfare of children.   She also completed a program in Integrated Psychotherapy at the Hebrew University of Jerusalem, is a graduate of the Imago System for couple’s therapy, and was editor of Saad, the Israeli bi-monthly social workers magazine from 1965 to 1979.  Finally, from 2003 to 2014, she worked at Amcha with Holocaust survivors as a group worker for Haredi women, as an individual caseworker, and as a couple’s therapist.


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  • Halina Rosenkranz

    Halina RosenKranz

    Article: Scars of the Past – Group Work with Holocaust Survivors and Descendants

    Learning about the Holocaust, its impact on those who survived, their families and future generations has been a life-long commitment and endeavor for Halina Rosenkranz, a geriatric counselor and Holocaust educator.  Born in Poland to Holocaust survivor parents, Ms. Rosenkranz came to the United States at age six, at which time her journey to understand the numbers on her parents’ arms first began. Ms. Rosenkranz has a BA in Psychology and a Master’s Degree in Counseling. Her professional experience in working with survivors started nearly thirty years ago when she was hired as a geriatric counselor by the Workmen’s Circle Multi-Care Center.  Currently, Ms. Rosenkranz works for the Westchester Jewish Community Services where she facilitates three support groups for survivors, child-survivors and the second generation. In addition to her group work, Ms. Rosenkranz is a Holocaust Educator; since 2009 the curriculum she created has been a key component of Ardsley Middle School’s 8th grade English unit on Elie Wiesel’s memoir Night.  She has been a guest speaker at conferences and educational facilities. In addition, Ms. Rosenkranz is a member of the education committee of the Holocaust and Human Rights Education Center of Westchester, where she is actively involved in creating a second generation speakers bureau by training children of survivors to carry on the profoundly meaningful work of their parents—educating future generations.

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  • Susan Hersh Sachs

    Susan Hersh Sachs

    Article: For Decades I Was Silent: A Holocaust Survivor’s Journey Back to Faith – The Memoirs of Baruch G. Goldstein

    Ms. Sachs was born in McKeesport, PA in 1942.  She has a B.A. in English Literature from the University of Chicago.  Inspired by a trip to Jerusalem in 1962, she made aliyah 25 years later and had several jobs, including freelance writing, teaching English, working in the public relations office of Herzog Hospital in Jerusalem.  She recently retired as Director of PR and Development at Melabev, a role she had for the past 20 years.   She continues on as a volunteer for Melabev and as a member of the Board of Directors for the American Committee for Melabev.

    Baruch Goldstein, most recently of Florida, Rhode Island and Israel, but originally from Poland, is one member of this larger Melabev “family” whom I was privileged to meet through my work at Melabev.  A couple years ago Baruch published his memoirs which focus on his experiences during the Shoah and his adjustments to life afterwards.   His book, “For Decades I was Silent: A Holocaust Survivor’s Journey Back to Faith,” is the subject of my review, submitted to Kavod.

    Melabev is a non-profit organization that operates a network of day care centers for older adults in Jerusalem and Beit Shemesh, which specialize in Alzheimer’s care.  Melabev professionals bring therapeutic activities to the clients’ homes and offer support groups for the family members.  Melabev relies on donations and grants from foundations, and other bodies, including the Claims Conference.  The assistance from the Claims Conference was instrumental in completing permanent day care centers in three locations in Jerusalem, where the staff and volunteers care for several hundred older adults daily.  A large percentage of the clients, their family members, and even the Friends of Melabev who help raise funds for its support, are Holocaust survivors. 


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  • Renee Symonds

    Renee Symonds

    Article: Max, An Unconventional Father; The Long Goodbye

    Renee has run a successful private practice in Sydney for many years. During that time, she combined her personal knowledge (as the only child of Holocaust survivors) with her professional experience to create a Holocaust Awareness Program at the Sir Moses Montefiore Jewish Home. The program was used to train all staff there to ensure that they were aware of issues relevant to many of the residents. Renee is also a board member of the home.

    When the Survivor Focus Group was initiated at the Sydney Jewish Museum in 2006, Renee’s expertise with Holocaust Survivors was seen as an essential element and she was asked to be a co-founder. She has been co-facilitator since that time.

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