Former N.J. Commission on Holocaust Education Executive Director Paul B. Winkler Dies at 79

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Paul B. Winkler, the recently retired executive director of the New Jersey Commission on Holocaust Education, died July 12. He was 79.

Paul B. Winkler, the recently retired executive director of the New Jersey Commission on Holocaust Education, died July 12. He was 79.

A resident of Lawrenceville, N.J., Winkler served as executive director of the commission from 1975 until he retired in May.

“Paul was formally involved in Holocaust/genocide education and prejudice reduction education since 1974,” Commission Chairman Philip Kirschner and Executive Director Lawrence M. Glaser said in a statement. “May we all remember Paul fondly and strive to live up to the example he set and the potential he saw in others.”

In a 2007 Jewish Exponent article about a Holocaust exhibit on the Battleship New Jersey, Winkler described the changing nature of Holocaust education.

"As our survivor population becomes smaller, exhibits such as this will continue to tell the story of the Holocaust, so it doesn't become a Jewish story, but a man-versus-man issue," he said.

Winkler wrote extensively about both the Holocaust and genocide education. His works included an article about Darfur, which was published in the 2007 NJEA Review. Most recently, he wrote Teaching the Unspeakable – The New Jersey Story of Holocaust/Genocide Education, which describes the history of Holocaust and genocide education in the state.

A lifelong educator, his career included stints as a teacher, principal, superintendent and regional education director for the New Jersey Department of Education, among other positions.

Winkler was honored numerous times over the years, receiving the Philip Forman Human Relations Award from the American Jewish Committee of Central New Jersey, the NJEA Humanitarian Award and the MLK Academy of Leaders Award. In addition, the Paul B. Winkler Endowment for elementary educators was established in honor of his 70th birthday.

Winkler is survived by his wife of 60 years, Cecelia; two children, Sharona and Jeffrey; five grandchildren, Elie, Sammy, Racheli, Adam and Amy; and one great-grandchild, Celeste.

Contact: [email protected]; 215-832-0797

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