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Date of Passing: Feb 26, 1916

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ESTHER GENSER KAPLAN 1916 - 2011 It is with great sorrow that we announce the passing of our beloved mother, Esther Genser Kaplan, at the age of 95, in Palm Springs, California, a great woman, mentor and inspiration to all who knew her. Esther was born in Norwood, Manitoba on February 26, 1916, to Rose and Meyer Moscovitch. She attended Norwood Collegiate where she excelled in her studies. She entered the University of Manitoba at the age of 15 and graduated at 19 with the University Gold Medal in Science. She was an active member and President of her sorority, Delta Phi Epsilon. The following year Esther married Percy Genser and together they shared 51 wonderful years in Winnipeg, Calgary and Palm Springs. They were devoted to their family, friends and many causes in different locales around the world. Percy predeceased her in 1987. In 1993 Esther married Samuel Kaplan of Boston. They lived between Boston and Palm Springs and later moved permanently to Palm Springs where Sam predeceased her in 2005. Esther's community service began at National Council of Jewish Women (NCJW) where she taught English to Holocaust survivors who were new Canadians. She was a member of the Lillian Freiman Chapter of Hadassah. She was on various boards of women's committees including the Winnipeg Art Gallery, the Royal Winnipeg Ballet, and the Winnipeg Symphony Orchestra. She was elected Vice President of the Board of the Winnipeg Symphony Orchestra. She was also President of Shaarey Zedek Synagogue Sisterhood. As a result she became Midwest Branch President of the National Women's League of the Conservative Synagogues of America. She was also a Vice President of the International Organization of the Women's League, United Synagogues of America. She was a founding member and first President of ORT in Winnipeg. Esther was a founding member of SHARE Manitoba and Area Co-ordinator for the United Way. She also served as a Board member of the Manitoba Centennial Corporation, planning and creating the Manitoba / North Dakota Peace Garden. In 1967 she was appointed a founding board member of the National Arts Centre, Ottawa, representing the Province of Manitoba. Esther was elected to the Board of Fidelity Trust and as such, was the first woman in Western Canada to be appointed to such a position. In Palm Springs she was a National Vice President of NCJW Inc., an active member of Temple Isaiah Sisterhood and a Board member of Jewish Federation Palm Springs. She may be the last of those very special women who were role models to us in so many ways. She was not only beautiful and fashionable, but led the way in community service on so many levels. Her influence and example led many of us into leadership roles in both Jewish and general causes and philanthropy. Esther is survived by her children Carol and Ronald Slater, Vancouver; David and Joan Genser, Boston; Roberta and Mayer Lawee, Montreal and her loving caregiver Neftali Capua. She was predeceased by her granddaughter Deborah Elizabeth Genser, her brother Nathan Moscovitch and her sister Sibyl Greenberg Mirsky. She will be sorely missed by her grandchildren Charles Slater, Erin Battat, Adam Slater, David Slater, Shauna Matlin, Beth Lawee Mamane, Laura Lawee, David Lawee, Daniel Lawee, Reese Genser, and Mira Woods. Esther was a loving great-grandmother to Zach, Robert, Ben and Liam Battat; Thom, Ilai, Emanuelle and Max Slater; Kyle, Seryna and Talya Mamane; Chloe, Justin, Olivia, Jordan and Maren Lawee, Lauren, Benjamin and Madison Genser, Alexis Woods and her many dear nieces, nephews and friends. Funeral services will be held at Shaarey Zedek Synagogue on Friday, June 10 at 11:00 a.m. Donations in Esther's memory may be made to the Esther Genser Kaplan University of Manitoba Library Endowment Fund, 179 Extended Education, Winnipeg, MB R3T 2N2, HIPPY CANADA (604-676-8250) or the charity of your choice.

As published in Winnipeg Free Press on Jun 08, 2011

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