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K-State Today

April 25, 2014



Daughter of Holocaust survivors speaks May 1 at Hale Library

By Sarah Hoyt

Julie Kohner

Educator Julie Kohner presents "Voices of the Generations," a multimedia program that relates the life of her parents, Walter and Hanna Kohner, at 4 p.m. Thursday, May 1, in the Hemisphere Room on the fifth floor of Hale Library. It is open to the public.

Hanna Kohner survived four concentration camps during the Holocaust, while Walter Kohner escaped by immigrating to the United States. They reunited after the war and finally married. Together, they wrote "Hanna and Walter, A Love Story," which traces their steps from the 1930s in Czechoslovakia to California after World War II.

Using the book, artifacts and an episode of "This Is Your Life," in which her mother was the first survivor to share her story on national television, Julie reveals the atrocities of the Holocaust in a very personal way.

Julie has been a Jewish educator for more than 30 years. She has a master's degree in educational counseling, and she has been an invited speaker at community centers, schools and universities across the United States. "Voices of the Generations" originated in a 1990 program she created so that her seventh-grade b'nai mitzvah classes would understand the Holocaust through her mother's eyes.

Karin Westman, head of the English department, said, "We look forward to welcoming Julie Kohner to K-State, so we can gain insight on the personal stories of Julie's family and discover new ways to share this history with others."

"Voices of the Generations" is sponsored by the College of Education, the English department, the history department, and the Dow Center for Multicultural and Community Studies at K-State Libraries. Questions about the program can be directed to Westman at 785-532-2171 or english@k-state.edu.