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Hershal M. Tanzer ’48

Hershal Morris Tanzer ’48, September 20, 2003, in Portland. Hershal received a BA from Reed in economics, following his service in the U.S. Army in Europe during World War II. He began his career in the lumber industry as a broker for the Buckeye Lumber Company; later, the Buckeye Pacific Corporation, for which he was vice president. From 1952 to 1993, he worked for the Forest City Trading Group as senior vice president in charge of research and economic forecasting. Other associations included the Western Lumber Marketing Association, for which he was founding member and president (1963–64). Hershal's concerns lay outside of himself and within his community, and he bettered all experiences in his life with his calm endeavors. "The world if full of pleasures and duties, both to be attended to," he wrote. He served as president of Bnai Brith Lodge (1958–59); and his efforts to raise money for Israel were acknowledged in his being honored as Man of the Year by the Jewish National Fund in 1967. He was elected president of the Jewish Welfare Federation in Portland (1967–68); was president of the Congregation Nev Shalom (1970–71); received the Torch of Liberty Award by Anti-Defamation League’s Society of Fellows; was Honorary Consul of Oregon for the State of Israel; and served as president of the Oregon Council of the Jewish National Fund in 1975. He was appointed by Governors McCall and Straub to consecutive terms on the board of the TriMet transit association. In addition, Hershal’s interests included photography; mosaics, some of which are displayed on the Congregation Nev Shalom synagogue walls; and World War II history. He traveled extensively, including trips to the Middle East, and hikes along the Cascade Crest Trail in Oregon. In 1948 to 1949, he was director of the Reed alumni association. In 1952, Hershal married Shirley Blum, a noted historian who died in 1994, and they had three sons, and shared a memorable family life. He is survived by his sons and six grandchildren.

Appeared in Reed magazine: November 2003

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