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YIVO Institute for Jewish Research » Support Yivo » 7th Annual Heritage Luncheon - ancienne version » Honorees Bios

Honorees Bios

BLANCHE AND EMANUEL BINDER
LIFETIME ACHIEVEMENT AWARD
Blanche Binder, born in New York City, grew up on Manhattan’s Lower East Side. Her father, Fischel Bimko, a native of Kielce, Poland, was a noted Yiddish playwright and author whose plays have been performed in theaters all over the world. Blanche’s first language was Yiddish, and in her childhood home Yiddish actors, writers and musicians often gathered to share music, stories and ideas. As a young woman, Blanche pursued her undergraduate studies at Hunter College, while also becoming a proficient opera singer. In 1947, she met Emanuel, who had fought in Europe during World War II while serving in the U.S. Army. Manny, also a native New Yorker and the grandson of a rabbi, spoke Yiddish at home while growing up. Blanche and Manny married and settled in New Jersey where they raised their daughters Leah and Andrea. They sent their daughters to a Yiddish-language summer camp, where the girls had the opportunity to “perform” on the Yiddish stage. During their 61-year partnership, the Binders have continued to focus on the preservation of Yiddish culture and supporting the State of Israel, the twin goals of their commitment to the greater Jewish community. Throughout their married life they have been active members in the American Jewish Committee and YIVO, served on the Folksbiene Yiddish Theater Board of Directors, formed a Northern New Jersey Chapter of Magen David Adom, and in their “spare” time together built a successful real estate business. Blanche and Manny are the proud grandparents of five grandchildren. Blanche honored her father’s memory by publishing his five-volume autobiography, On Life’s Path. The Binders along with their daughters, will accepts this award as a tribute to and in memory of Blanche’s late father Fischel (z”l).
MAKS ETINGIN
VILNA AWARD
Maks Etingin, one of the newest members of the YIVO Board of Directors, is devoted to supporting Jewish institutions in the United States and Israel. Recently he dedicated a panorama at Yad Vashem in Jerusalem in memory of the family who saved him during the Holocaust. He also is deeply involved with Ben Gurion University of the Negev, the Chaim Weizmann Institute and Magen David Adom. Maks is an experienced real estate professional and well-respected leader in the field of property management at ORSID Realty, which his father Albert Etingin founded over fifty years ago. He has earned the real estate industry’s most highly regarded designation of Certified Property Manager (CPM). As part of the team at ORSID, where he serves as Chairman and Chief Executive Officer, he is proud that he is “never more than a phone call away from any client.” Maks is connected to YIVO through his birthplace and the Jewish community that once thrived there. He notes, “Wilno (Vilna) and YIVO were part of my growing up. I was born in Wilno and as a teenager I ended up in the Wilno Ghetto, from its first day to its destruction. By miracle we survived – my parents, brother and myself were hidden underground by a Pole.” The Etingins subsequently left Vilna for Lodz, Poland, then Sweden, and then came to New York. With the help of the Jewish Community Center in Bridgeport, Connecticut, he was able complete his studies in engineering. He is proud of building a successful real estate company in New York, but most importantly, he notes, “My wife Rochelle and I have two married daughters and six grandchildren, all of whom give me great joy in life.”
WARREN GROVER
SPECIAL YIVO RECOGNITION AWARD
Warren Grover, a native of Newark, New Jersey, is a graduate of Weeqhuaic High School. From there he went on to earn an MA in Russian history at New York University. He taught history at Weeqhuaic High School, and for five years at Newark College of Engineering, before he left to join a family business in direct mail advertising. After 30 years in the business he left to pursue the study of history once again, which culminated in the publication of his landmark study Nazi’s in Newark (Transaction Books: 2003). In addition to completing this book, he taught at Solomon Schecter for two years. Warren’s lifelong interest in history and languages is integral to his more than 20 years of service as a Trustee of YIVO, and as chair of its Finance Committee. His knowledge of Russian, and his familiar connections to prewar Jewish Lithuania, and his businessman’s approach to governance are key factors in his years of leadership and commitment to YIVO. For over thirty years Warren has worked actively for the United Jewish Federation of MetroWest. He also has served as president of the board of the Jewish Historical Society of MetroWest, and on the board of the New Jersey Historical Society. His wife Andrea, an Italian scholar teaching at New York University, translated Anna Foa’s book, The Jews of Europe after the Black Death, as well as play by Ugo Betti. The Grover’s son, Owen, and his wife Erin, have a son, Devon.