ORT America Pins

Elena Kaplan's grandmother, Ruth B. Solomon, is seated far left. She was a member of the Islanders Chapter of North Miami.
Elena Kaplan's grandmother, Ruth B. Solomon, is seated far left. She was a member of the Islanders Chapter of North Miami.

The practice of awarding ORT pins for donations or milestones was very popular from the 1950’s to the 1980’s, especially within regional ORT chapters. Since the merger of American ORT (Men’s division) and Women’s American ORT in 2006, and as individual chapters have disbanded, the pins no longer play a part within ORT.

The significance of the pins is varied. Some, such as the Golden Circle, designate a level of individual giving (specifically $1,000). Members who served as chapter presidents were awarded a President’s pin, and there were pins for each year of involvement. For those who gave a significant amount to the 1880 Society, there was the Baroness (De Gunzberg) ORT Society pin, shaped with a stylized infinity symbol.

Here are some recollections from ORT members and their pins.

 

ORT Pins Judy Levin The “collage pin” was made by an artist. She did this for many of us who had a collection of pins as a way to display our many years of loyalty to ORT along with our commitment of time and financial support.

The Wedgewood pin in the center was a premier pin for many of us. Once we stepped up our financial support and earned the Golden Circle Pin with diamonds, rubies, and sapphires, the Wedgewood pin went unworn. The other pins include my Golden Circle pin, the ‘Baroness” pin, my Life Member pin, and a few belonging to my mother-in-law.

These pins represent many years of involvement, leadership and support from 1978 until the present day.

Judy Levin

 


Baroness ORT Society Pin

Carol Luber's Baroness ORT Society Pin

This pin reminds me of when I left my hometown of Philadelphia and moved to Seattle for work. The first move of my life and I was searching for my Jewish community there. I met a wonderful woman, Terry Azose, of the Seattle chapter of ORT and through that connection I was able to congregate with my people.

It brings me joy and pride to have this pin. Thank you for allowing me to share my story.

Carol Luber

 

 


Pins belonging to Elena Kaplan's grandmother, Ruth B. Solomon, a member of the Islanders Chapter of North Miami.

My grandmother, Ruth B. Solomon (née Cohen), was a member of the Islanders Chapter in the mid-1960s. Attached is a picture of her member pins from 1962 to 1966 and a gold medallion charm. Originally from New Bedford, Massachusetts, she moved to North Miami, Florida in the late 1950s.

Elena Kaplan


Rona Moroze's Golden Circle pin, President's pin, and various membership pins.

Oh, what wonderful, meaningful memories you triggered when you asked for these ORT pin pictures. Below is what I kept of the many, many ORT pins I was awarded thru my ORT years. For me personally, in the very beginning of my active ORT days, it meant a sense of belonging. However, soon It meant being an integral part of a huge Jewish organization which gave ORT students personal growth through education but also gave me personal growth from being a member to committee chairs, to chapter president, and lastly Passaic County Region President. And we all wore our pins proudly.

I’m showing the front and back of the Golden Circle pin which represented a $1000.00 contribution. Also, see my “President pin” and membership pins.

Rona Moroze

These pins are from my mother’s collection. She was involved in ORT from the 1970s to the early 90s.

Ann Shapiro, Albany NY

ORT Pins

These pins belonged to my mother, Evelyn Radway, who passed away in 2018 at age 88. She was a member of ORT in Ohio, then San Diego, CA.

Shelly Hartnett, Atlanta GA


My mother, Leona T. Ball from Rego Park, Queens (New York), was her chapter's treasurer for many years. Here are some of her pins.

Deborah S. Ball

Here are pins from Mrs. Mae Novy, a past president of Village West ORT (Manchester, NJ). These are just a few of the pins Mrs. Novy had from the 1970s to the 80s , and her Chapter President pins.


Susie Hausman's pins

My Mom, Sylvia Hausman, got started in ORT in the Valley Region of Los Angeles (I believe in the 60s). I remember attending meetings with her and running to various people's houses to drop off and pick up things for meetings and activities when I was a kid. My sister, Jo Ann Kay, joined a chapter after having her first child in the early 80s, and I helped to start a young professional chapter in the mid-80s. My sister got involved in one of the Denver chapters when she moved in 1993. I moved to Denver a couple of years later and started back with ORT. That's how we met so many of our current friends.

These pins are mostly the ones that were from my involvement. I believe the top-right pin was my mother's. She would have turned 100 this year as well. A great year to celebrate!

Susie Hausman

Judy Adelman Pins

My name is Judy Adelman, an ORT member in California's San Fernando Valley (Valley Region), who was active for many years including as a president of the South Valley Chapter and Valley Region Treasurer. It was the source of friendship and belonging for me when we relocated to California in 1973. I moved to Ventura, CA in 2009 and still have several of my ORT pins.

However, this is about my mother, Eleanor Keen, a long-time member of ORT in Highland Park, Illinois's Lake County Region (where my ORT membership began, due to her example). She took on many different roles in her chapter there — probably beginning in the late 1950s — before moving to Boca Raton, FL in 1983. Upon her passing in 2006 we discovered a variety of ORT pins among her jewelry items. Having kept mine, I was OK with my sister taking them, and I didn't give it much thought after that.

So, it was a delightful and touching surprise to receive from my siblings for my 70th birthday this framed hommage to my and my mother's involvement with Women's American ORT.  It hangs on my bedroom wall — a daily reminder of this bond we shared.