Holocaust survivor to speak at DelVal’s Multicultural Forum

Judy Meisel, a human rights activist and Holocaust survivor, will discuss her experiences combating bigotry and racism at Delaware Valley College’s Multicultural Forum on Tuesday.

“Despite the horrors she lived through, she preaches a message of tolerance, but through embracing life and making a meaningful difference in the lives of others,” said Dr. Tanya Casas, a faculty member who helped organize the forum.

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Judy Meisel

The talk, free and open to the public, is scheduled for 4:30 p.m. in Room 114 of the Mandel Science Building on the Doylestown campus. A documentary, Tak for Alt (Thank you for Everything, in Danish), about Meisel’s life will be shown on campus Monday at 4:30 p.m. in Mandell 217.

Meisel, who grew up in Lithuania, watched as her mother disappeared into a concentration camp gas chamber, escaped a death march and passed herself off as Catholic before fleeing to Denmark. When she escaped, she was 16-years-old and weighed only 47 pounds.

In 1963, after moving to the United States and starting a family, Meisel saw a race riot on the news. It broke out in Philadelphia, not far from her new home, after an African-American family moved into a white neighborhood.

The riot reminded Meisel of the hatred she’d experienced. She joined the civil rights movement and began using her story to show people the dangerous consequences of hatred and intolerance.

The forum is hosted by the Liberal Arts department, Students for Diversity and Hillel. The university hosts multicultural forums twice a year.

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