The Holocaust Museum Houston's annual Guardian of the Human Spirit Award luncheon proved to be a bountiful event on many levels, not the least of which was raising $732,000 in support of the museum's educational programs.
As is tradition, the luncheon honored a Holocaust survivor. This year, Edith Sternlicht Mincberg, along with her late husband, Josef Minceberg, was honored. The sell-out audience of 1,100 listened with rapt attention as she spoke about the early years when she met her husband at a displaced persons camp, married and moved to Houston in 1949. She received a standing ovation when the award was presented. (So large was the attendance that 100 guests had to be seated in the ballroom foyer where guests viewed the proceedings on video screen.)
Icing on the cake of this sweetest of events was the conversation between Alan Dershowitz and Ernie Manouse.
The Mincbergs were among founders of the museum and their support has lasted through the years. Sue and Lester Smith have been generous supporters of the museum for two decades and for that generosity and involvement they were presented the first Siegi Izakson Visionary Award for their contributions to the museum and the community. The award was a surprise to the Smiths as they had no idea of the honor until they were escorted to the stage.
Icing on the cake of this sweetest of events was the conversation between famed attorney, author and political commentator Alan Dershowitz and Ernie Manouse, senior producer and host for Houston Public Media. When Manouse called for an end to the interview, Dershowitz asked for a few more questions and the crowd burst into applause.
The luncheon was chaired by Lainie Gordon and David Mincberg and Araceli and Rigo Flores. Honorary chairs included the Houston-area survivors of the Holocaust, Michael Goldberg and Glen Rosenbaum. Serving as host committee chairs were Elaine and David Lavine.