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YIVO to Honor Alan M. Dershowitz and Matthew Goldstein at 84th Annual Benefit Dinner on May 26, 2009

PRESS NEWS : For immediate release
Media inquiries :
Elise Fischer
tel. 212-294-6131
e-mail :
YIVO Institute for Jewish Research
15 West 16th Street - New York - NY - 10011
[New York City - NY, 11 May 2009]  The YIVO Institute for Jewish Research is proud to announce it will honor Alan M. Dershowitz, Felix Frankfurter Professor of Law at Harvard University Law School, and Matthew Goldstein, Chancellor of the City University of New York, on May 26, 2009.

Alan M. Dershowitz, the Felix Frankfurter Professor of Law at Harvard Law School, is world-renowned as a staunch defender of individual rights. A Brooklyn native, he has been called the top lawyer of last resort, America’s most public Jewish defender, and Israel’s "lead attorney in the court of public opinion.” A graduate of Brooklyn College and Yale Law School, he joined the Harvard Law School faculty at age 25 after clerking for Judge David Bazelon and Justice Arthur Goldberg. Dershowitz, who has been characterized as a "public intellectual par excellence," has been a pioneer in making the legal profession accessible to the general public. He was the first law professor to write regularly for the New York Times in its Week in Review, Op-Ed and Book Review sections. Over the course of his 35-years as a lawyer, Dershowitz, who takes half of his cases on a pro bono basis and continues to represent numerous indigent defendants and causes, has won more than 100 cases. This is a remarkable record for a part-time litigator who primarily handles criminal appeals, which generally have a very low rate of reversal. He has received many honors, including the William O. Douglas First Amendment Award from B'nai B'rith in 1983.
Matthew Goldstein, appointed Chancellor of The City University of New York (CUNY) in 1999, is the first CUNY graduate (City College, Class of 1963) to lead the nation's most prominent urban public university. He has worked hard in this capacity to implement his vision of renewed academic excellence throughout the many campuses of the CUNY system. Goldstein has served in senior academic and administrative positions for more than 30 years, including as President of Baruch College, President of the Research Foundation, and Acting Vice Chancellor for Academic Affairs of CUNY. His vision for CUNY has involved raising academic standards, strengthening student preparation, revolutionizing financing and adding new schools to the system, for which he was honored with the Academic Leadership Award of the Carnegie Corporation of New York in 2007. Prior to being named Chancellor, he was President of Adelphi University. He also has held faculty positions in mathematics and statistics at Baruch College, the CUNY Graduate School and University Center, Polytechnic University of New York, Cooper Union, Eastern Connecticut State University, and the University of Connecticut. He is a Fellow of the American Academy of Arts & Sciences, and a Fellow of the New York Academy of Sciences.
Bruce Slovin, Chair of the YIVO Board of Directors, noted, "Our honorees this year make me especially proud. They are so actively engaged in making our Jewish and world communities safer, more productive and welcoming to all. They are not afraid to face major institutional and financial challenges with strength and creativity, and to succeed."
The cocktail reception will begin at 6 PM and the Award Ceremony will begin at 7:00 PM at the Center for Jewish History, 15 West 16th Street, New York City. For reservations or for more information, please call (917) 606-8287. The dinner couvert is $1,000.

The YIVO Institute for Jewish Research was founded in Vilna (Wilno, Poland; now Vilnius, Lithuania) in 1925 by key European intellectuals, including Albert Einstein and Sigmund Freud, to record and study the history, language, literature, and culture of the Jews of Eastern Europe. In 1940 YIVO moved its headquarters to New York City. YIVO is a global resource center for Eastern European Jewish Studies; Yiddish language, literature, and folklore; Ashkenazic history and culture; and the American Jewish immigrant experience. The YIVO Library currently holds more than 385,000 books and periodicals in twelve major languages. The YIVO Archives hold over 23 million documents, photographs, recordings, posters, films, videotapes, and items of ephemera, as well as thousands of handwritten, eyewitness accounts by Holocaust survivors and displaced persons and the world’s most extensive Yiddish music and theater collections. YIVO offers public programs, symposia, exhibitions, scholarly publications and research fellowships.