By Cindy Sher, Chicago JUF News Managing Editor
Saerree K. Fiedler (on the left in photo), who along with her late husband, Louis, made possible the construction of Northwestern University’s Louis and Saerree Fiedler Hillel Center, passed away on April 14 at the age of 93. In addition to her instrumental work at Northwestern, Fiedler supported other Jewish charities in Chicago as well as in Israel. Fiedler was both a Silver and Golden Circle member of the Jewish United Fund of Metropolitan Chicago.
Saerree and Louis—who themselves dated while active at the University of Illinois Hillel during their college years—were always fond of Hillel and its mission of inspiring young Jewish adults to commit to Jewish life on campus and beyond.“Her care and passion for Hillel was infectious,” said Rabbi Michael Balinsky, the former executive director of Northwestern’s Fiedler Hillel. “There were no issues of personal kavod or glory with her. She did it because it made her feel good and she wanted to make a difference.”
Fiedler felt a particular kinship with Northwestern students because her granddaughter, Laura Weisskopf (now Laura Weisskopf Bleill), was the president of Hillel Cultural Life on campus at the time. “My grandmother emanated grace and elegance and she was the definition of a lady in everything she did,” said Bleill, a former Lewis Summer Intern at JUF News. “She was a selfless and caring person. She was a wonderful listener and would always remember things that most people would dismiss or forget.”
Read more in the Chicago Jewish United Fund News.
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