Program on Tahara Held in Memory of Stern College for Women’s First Dean, Elizabeth Isaacs Gilbert

Jan 24, 2007 — Rochel Berman, author of Dignity Beyond Death: The Jewish Preparation for Burial, was at Stern College for Women on Wednesday, Jan. 24, speaking to students about the process and beauty of Tahara, or ritual cleansing of the dead.

The program, “When Ordinary People Do Extraordinary Things: How We Ensure Dignity Beyond Death,” was sponsored by the Office of Student Affairs, Office of the Academic Dean, the Stern College for Women Student Council, the Torah Activities Council and the Sy Syms School of Business Student Council.

Mrs. Berman spoke about the power, spirituality and importance of Tahara.

The shiur was given in memory of Elizabeth Isaacs Gilbert, the first dean of Stern College for Women, who passed away in December at the age of 104. Mrs. Berman and Dean Gilbert both served on The Rosh Pinah Chevra Kadisha of Westchester County.

Nancy Klein, Dean Isaacs’ daughter, was also at the program, and participated in The Rosh Pinah Chevra Kadisha of Westchester County as well. In honor of the value Dean Gilbert placed on Tahara, Mrs. Berman’s book was presented to all of the students in attendance at the program.

Mrs. Klein’s daughter Abby also spoke at the program, citing the importance of Tahara to her grandmother and her personal recollections about her grandmother.

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