The American Jewish Congress mourns the passing of past president Theodore R. Mann due to COVID-19. Mr. Mann was elected in 1984 at the Congress’ biennial meeting in Baltimore, Maryland. Ahead of his time, he was an early advocate for the concept of land for peace and the two-state solution. He was also known for fervently seeking to ensure that the government remove religious preferences from established laws. 

A man whose life was devoted to Tikkun Olam, he fought against Blue Laws in his native Pennsylvania that hurt Jewish businesses, was arrested outside the South African embassy protesting apartheid, and marched with fellow Jews to protest the Soviet Union’s restrictions on freedom of movement. Whether it was a domestic or foreign concern, Mr. Mann sought to ensure that compassion and empathy were central to his activism and focus on social justice. 

American Jewry lost a giant, a man who sought compromise, diplomacy, and justice. His work, both on behalf of the American Jewish Congress and for other major Jewish organizations, moved both America and the Middle East towards peace, justice and reconciliation. Let his name be honored.

© 2020 American Jewish Congress.