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2023 Annual Dinner

Center for Jewish History (map)
15 W. 16th St.
New York, NY 10011

Please join the Leo Baeck Institute at the Center for Jewish History for our Annual Dinner on Tuesday, October 24, 2023. LBI President Dr. David G. Marwell will present Mandy Patinkin and Kathryn Grody with the Leo Baeck Medal, LBI’s highest award. On this occasion, we will also honor our longtime Trustee and former President, Bernard (Bernie) Blum with the Leo Baeck Medal.

Ruth W. Messinger, current Global Ambassador and former President of the American Jewish World Service (AJWS), will also make remarks when we present the Leo Baeck Medal.

Reception at 6:00 PM, Award Ceremony and Dinner at 7:00 PM


Mandy Patinkin and Kathryn Grody

Mandy Patinkin is an iconic Tony and Emmy-award winning actor, (Evita, Chicago Hope), a celebrated interpreter of the songs of Stephen Sondheim, a winner of the Deutscher Schallplattenpreis for his recording of Yiddish songs, Mameloshen, and most recently, the voice of LBI’s podcast Exile. His partner, Kathryn Grody, is an Obie-Award winning playwright and actress, and the two have entertained millions during the COVID-19 pandemic by sharing hilarious and heartwarming nuggets of their “uninterrupted togetherness” and glimpses into over four decades of mostly marital bliss on social media.

They have also used their platform to advocate for a program of Tikkun Olam informed by anti-racism, feminism, and the defense and expansion of democracy. They are especially active on behalf of refugees as ambassadors of the International Rescue Committee, an organization founded on the initiative of Albert Einstein in 1933 to assist German Jews fleeing Nazism.

Join us when we honor them with the Leo Baeck Medal for their long careers in the arts and as advocates for a fairer, better world.

Bernard (Bernie) Blum

It was longtime LBI Trustee and former President Bernie Blum's visionary leadership and generosity that launched LBI's podcast, "Exile," hosted by fellow honoree Mandy Patinkin, which has allowed us to reach an unprecedented audience with stories from the German-Jewish Diaspora. Before that, Bernie spearheaded the digitization of LBI's entire archive, making millions of documents available for researchers worldwide and revolutionizing LBI's work.

Bernie Blum, Trustee
Bernie Blum

We are thrilled to announce that on this occasion, we will also honor Bernie Blum with the Leo Baeck Medal.


Ruth W. Messinger

Ruth W. Messinger, current Global Ambassador and former President of the American Jewish World Service (AJWS), will give a laudatio for honorees Mandy Patinkin and Kathryn Grody. Ruth’s remarkable 18-year presidency at AJWS began after a 20-year career in public service in New York City as a City Council member and Manhattan Borough President. Under Ruth’s leadership, AJWS exponentially expanded its work to promote human rights in the developing world, launch campaigns to end the Darfur genocide, reform international food aid, stop violence against women and LGBT people, end land grabs, and respond to natural disasters around the globe.

Ruth Messinger
Ruth W. Messinger