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Rose Dunkelman

DUNKELMAN, ROSE (1889–1949), Canadian Jewish communal leader and philanthropist. Rose Dunkelman (Miller) was born in Philadelphia and moved to Toronto at age 13. She married David Dunkelman, a major Toronto clothing manufacturer, in 1910. They had six children. Rose Dunkelman was a formidable force in a number of Jewish causes, including the Toronto Talmud Torah and Hebrew Free Schools, the Toronto YMHA and YWHA, and the Jewish Federated Charities. A passionate Zionist, however, her prime organizational focus was in support of Canadian Hadassah and in her forthright manner she was partly responsible for making the organization an independent and powerful Canadian Zionist force during the interwar and immediate postwar years. At her Toronto home and summer estate, "Sunnybrook Farm," she often entertained visiting Zionist leaders who kept her informed of unfolding events in Palestine. Outraged by the exclusion of Jews from nearby vacation resorts, she founded Balfour Beach on Lake Simcoe north of Toronto, where she had 30 cottages built which welcomed Jewish vacationers. A veritable whirlwind of energy and activity, she also worked for the Canadian Red Cross and was awarded the King's Coronation Medal in 1937. Miffed by the anti-Zionist editorials in the Toronto-based Canadian Jewish Review, in 1931, together with her husband, she founded the Canadian Jewish Standard, and recruited the talented Meyer *Weisgal, who briefly served as editor. This monthly magazine reflected her deep commitment to the Zionist cause. When she died in 1949 Rose Dunkelman was buried in Israel at *Deganyah Alef. Her son, Benjamin *Dunkelman, fought in Israel's War of Independence.

Sources: Encyclopaedia Judaica. © 2007 The Gale Group. All Rights Reserved.