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CT Holocaust survivor to be inducted into Immigrant Heritage Hall of Fame

HARTFORD, Conn – Judith Altman of Stamford is among four Connecticut women who will be inducted into the National Immigrant Heritage Center’s Immigrant Heritage Hall of of Fame (IHHF) at a ceremony to take held Thursday, July 14 at the AquaTurf in Plantsville, Connecticut.  

The new class of IHHF inductees includes distinguished individuals who have been leaders, activists and scholars in education, human rights, science, philanthropy, and intereligious understanding. In addition to Altmann, a Holocaust survivor, educator and human right activities, the include attorney Marilda Gándara, a business and philanthropic leader; Aida Mansoor, Islamic chaplain and activist for inter-religious understanding; and Radenka Maric, interim president, University of Connecticut. 

“We are very pleased to recognize this inspiring group of individuals who embody the kind of perseverance, commitment to excellence and notable achievement that have made our world a better place,” said Demetrios Giannaros, president of the National Immigrant Heritage Center, based in New Britain, Connecticut. “They are truly remarkable, and their contributions serve to motivate and encourage future generations to excel.” 

The mission of the National Immigrant Heritage Center, he added, is to “celebrate, preserve, publicize, and promote immigrant heritage and cultural diversity as defining characteristics of the American Nation, and the contributions of Immigrants and Immigration to American economy, culture, and civil society.” 

Judith Altman was born in Jasina Czechoslovakia, which was occupied by the Nazis in 1939. In 1944 she was arrested and transported to Auschwitz concentration camp with her niece where they were selected for work. From there she was sent to Essen and Gelsenkirchen Labor camps where she remained until March 1945. She survived the “death march” that ended in the Bergen Belsen concentration camp. Sick with typhus, Altman was barely alive when she was liberated by the British Army in 1945. Ms. Altmann was given the opportunity to go to Sweden. She lived in Sweden until 1948 at which time she immigrated to the United States. 

Altman, who has extensive experience speaking in schools, is a member of the Holocaust & Human Rights Education Speakers Bureau and is vice president of the Holocaust Child Survivors of Connecticut. 

The upcoming IHHF Induction Ceremony and Gala will feature as keynote speaker acclaimed Ukranian-American pianist Angelina Gadeliya, Professor of Piano and Coordinator of Keyboard Studies at the University of Connecticut.

For more information, visit immigrantheritage.org or call (860) 829- 1215.

Main Photo: Judith Altman

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