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RECOGNIZING MARCIA JO ZERIVITZ
(House of Representatives - October 13, 2011)

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[Page H6862]
                     RECOGNIZING MARCIA JO ZERIVITZ

  The SPEAKER pro tempore. The Chair recognizes the gentlewoman from 
Florida (Ms. Wasserman Schultz) for 5 minutes.
  Ms. WASSERMAN SCHULTZ. I rise today to honor the achievements of 
Marcia Jo Zerivitz, the founding executive director and chief curator 
of the Jewish Museum of Florida.
  Marcia has been a leader in the organized Florida Jewish community 
for more than 40 years. Originally from West Virginia, she has been a 
leader in Jewish organizations since her work with Hillel during her 
college years. Since the 1970s, Marcia has held various leadership 
roles within organizations such as Israel Bonds, AIPAC, ORT, and 
Hadassah.
  Throughout her lifetime, Marcia has broken the glass ceiling as the 
first woman in many positions, including as president of the Greater 
Orlando Jewish Federation. She is one of the first women nationally to 
hold this office. She was also the first woman to chair the Florida 
Association of Jewish Federations Conference in 1979. In 1993, Marcia 
guided the restoration of an abandoned 1936 art deco building on Miami 
Beach, which served as an Orthodox synagogue for 50 years, and she 
opened the Jewish Museum of Florida in 1995.
  She led the effort to get the museum accredited and has presented 
more than 50 exhibits in 15 years. The museum, which is on the National 
Register of Historic Places, has collected, preserved, and interpreted 
the Jewish experience in Florida since at least 1763, when Jews were 
first allowed to live in the State.
  In 2003, she initiated State legislation for a Florida Jewish History 
Month, which is now recognized each January. Then in 2005, Marcia and 
members of Miami's Jewish community approached me with the idea to 
designate a month to honor the contributions that American Jews have 
made to our Nation. As a result, I was the proud sponsor of the Jewish 
American Heritage Month resolution, which the House and Senate 
unanimously passed in 2006 and which has been proclaimed by President 
Bush and President Obama annually since then.
  Marcia Zerivitz should take great pride in knowing that Jewish 
American Heritage Month, which is now celebrated across our Nation each 
May, began with her work at the Jewish Museum of Florida.
  I am honored to recognize Marcia Jo Zerivitz for the positive impact 
that she has made, not just on Florida's Jewish community but on 
communities across our Nation. I wish her well on her retirement, and I 
thank her for enriching the lives of countless others in the Jewish 
community and around the country.

                          ____________________




    

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