Leadership in 1945

Sidney Goldstein

1 Leave a comment on paragraph 1 0 NCFR’s fifth President, Rabbi Sidney E. Goldstein, was one of the three founders of NCFR. He was at that time Associate Rabbi and Director of Social Services at the Free Synagogue of New York City, a branch he founded in 1907 and headed until his death in 1955. He was also Professor of Social Service at Hebrew Union College in New York City and chaired the New York State Conference on Marriage and the Family. He was active in several organizations, including the Central Conference of American Rabbis, the Jewish Institute on Marriage and the Family, the 1948 National Conference on Family Life, the 1950 White House Conference on Aging, and the Tri-State Conference on Family Relations. In addition, he authored a popular college text, Marriage and Family Counseling (McGraw-Hill, 1945).

2 Leave a comment on paragraph 2 0 Read Sidney Goldstein’s biography from the Stephen Wise Free Synagogue archives

3 Leave a comment on paragraph 3 0 The following is an excerpt from Goldstein‘s Presidential Address:

4 Leave a comment on paragraph 4 0 The new social order. . .will be composed of the children who grow up in the families of today. The family is not only the threshold of democracy, it is the very matrix in which democracy must develop during the embryonic period. An autocratic form of family organization can never prepare children for the new democratic social order. . . To the degree that we educate and train and discipline our children in the principles that are to govern the new social organization, to this degree they will expand the boundaries of human knowledge, deepen the ranges of human experience, enrich the reservoirs of spiritual strength upon which the future must draw for its own sustainment, and establish the new social order of which men now dream.

5 Leave a comment on paragraph 5 0 During Goldstein’s tenure as president, Evelyn Millis Duvall was formally appointed Executive Secretary of NCFR with an office provided at the University of Chicago. Her salary was $1.00/year.

6 Leave a comment on paragraph 6 0 Another milestone of that year was the introduction of David and Vera Mace, cofounders of the Marriage Guidance Council in London, England, in 1938, to promote marriage and family living education; prepare qualified marriage counselors; and secure a stable family life through such measures as better housing, maternal facilities, and education. David Fulcomer, who had met the Maces when he was in England, introduced them to NCFR. Dr. Mace immediately authored an article on their work in the February 1945 issue of Marriage and Family Living.  Several years later, David and Vera would move to the United States and eventually he would lead NCFR as president. This devoted married couple would continue their interest, research, writing, and teaching for many years, until their deaths.

7 Leave a comment on paragraph 7 0 Alhough no annual national conference was held in 1945, because of shortages in goods and travel, several important events made this a memorable year for NCFR. On March 7, 1945, NCFR became a 501.C3-registered nonprofit organization in the state of Illinois. According to the charter filed with the Illinois Secretary of State, NCFR’s purposes were as follows:

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  • To bring together persons from various disciplines interested in marriage and families for conferences and consideration of activities directed toward strengthening families
  • To stimulate and conduct research in the field of marriage and the family and to disseminate the findings of research through publications and educational programs
  • To encourage sound programs of education for marriage and family living in schools colleges, churches, community centers, and other organizations
  • To work with the affiliated regional and state organizations.”


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