Stanlee Stahl and the JFR’s mission is to repay a debt of gratitude on behalf of the Jewish community to those non-Jews who during the Holocaust, risked their lives and the lives of their families to save Jews.
Polish President Andrzej Duda has bestowed his nation’s Knight’s Cross of the Order of Merit upon Stanlee Stahl, the executive vice president of The Jewish Foundation for the Righteous (JFR), for her work in support of Polish rescuers of Jews during the Holocaust.
The award event took place last week at Poland’s Permanent Mission to the United Nations in New York.
Stahl heads the West Orange, New Jersey-based JFR and resides in Essex County. In July, she was the first American Jewish leader to receive Poland’s Pro Patria medal during a ceremony in Warsaw.
The Order of Merit of the Republic of Poland was created in 1974 to honor foreigners who have rendered great service to Poland.
“I am grateful to President Duda and the Polish government for this wonderful honor. It is a privilege for me to represent the JFR and the important work that we have been doing over the last 31 years,” said Stahl.
“In practicing the Jewish commitment to hakarat hatov, (demonstrating thanks), we have been able to support more than a thousand Righteous Gentiles living in Poland, sending over $37 million to these heroes over the past 31 years. The Righteous are true Polish heroes and this award not only recognizes my work, and that of the JFR, but more importantly recognizes their courage and legacy.”
Stahl and the JFR’s mission is to repay a debt of gratitude on behalf of the Jewish community to those non-Jews who during the Holocaust, risked their lives and the lives of their families to save Jews.
The JFR continues its work of providing monthly financial assistance to 100 aged and needy Righteous Gentiles, living in 11 countries. Since its founding, the JFR has provided more than $44 million to aged and needy rescuers which at one time numbered several thousand. Its Holocaust teacher education program has become a standard for teaching the history of the Holocaust and educating teachers and students about the significance of the Righteous as moral and ethical exemplars.