NCJW is proud to present

IMPACT: The San Antonio Jewish Oral History Project

Official Trailer

Short Film: The Immigrant Story

Click the play arrows to view.  Then, click icon in lower right corner to view in full screen mode.

The history of the history

In the spring of 2015, NCJW produced a film featuring an interview with Esther Vexler to commemorate the inaugural award to be given in her name.  Esther’s film was about the array of NCJW programs in which she was involved – many of which she founded.   At the premiere, the audience was struck by the sheer volume of all she had accomplished and the impact she had not only on the Jewish community, bur on San Antonio as a whole.  As many of you know, we lost Esther two years ago and are so grateful for what we were able to record and now able to share with future generations.

Esther’s film inspired us.  We started thinking, here is one person within the community and look at all she has done.  How many Esthers are there and what could we learn about how these people have shaped San Antonio over the last 8-10 decades.  So, we started interviewing – mainly people in their 80s and 90s and even a centenarian.  What we have learned is fascinating – and their stories share a similar arc.  Typically first generation Americans, many came here with absolutely nothing, and were heavily influenced by the cataclysmic events that roiled the world between two World Wars, the Great Depression, the 67 war, just to name a few.  Within this backdrop, these people managed to build a strong Jewish community and turn their efforts outward toward the greater San Antonio community.  The result of these interviews is Impact: The San Antonio Jewish Oral History Project. Please join us in the winter of 2019 to see how this extraordinary group of people shaped our values, our institutions, and our city.

About the video team:

Susan Butler, Rhonda Grimm, and Alan Petlin embarked on this project in the fall of 2017.  It has been a great privilege to interview the honorees and to examine their profound impact on the city of San Antonio. 


The following individuals have generously given their time to allow us to interview them and document their lives in San Antonio as they helped to build the community we all so enjoy and love.  Many thanks for their kindness and inspiration.

Stew Alexander

Sue and Richard Alterman

Janet Alyn

Luise* and Morris Bankler

Elsa Barshop

Louise and Mike Beldon

Sheldon Braverman*

Henry Cisneros

Maxine Cohen

Sally Cooper

Ellie and Marvin Forland

Candy and Buddy Gardner

Richard Goldsmith

Charlie Gonzalez

Frances Goodman

Sara Gurinsky

Sally Halff

Hannah Margolis

Cal Michelson

Char Miller

Dottie Miller

Mayor Ron Nirenberg

Sue Oppenheimer

Judy and Seymour Palans

Ana Rado

Barbara Richmond

Leo Rose

Sandra Rosenberg

Hana Ross

Rabbi Aryeh Scheinberg

Eleanor Siegel

Steve Sinkin

Lynn Stahl

Rabbi Samuel Stahl

Bryan Stone

Jimmy Toubin

Esther Vexler

Jack Vexler

* of blessed memory

The Event is Sold Out

Please be on the lookout for future showings. Thank you to everyone for the enthusiastic support!

Purchase Tickets

Tickets for the premiere are available through Eventbrite. Click to purchase.

Become a Founding Sponsor

As a Founding Sponsor, you will be recognized as such throughout the life of the project, linked to the film in all of its various representations from initial promotion, all screenings, to its permanent online presence.  There are two levels for Founding Sponsors:

  • Producer: Includes full page color ad in program and two tickets to the premiere — $1,800 and above

  • Director: Includes half-page color ad in program and two tickets to the premiere — $1,000.

Become an event Sponsor

The film will premiere at the Regal Alamo Quarry Theater on April 14th. Sponsorships are available to bring the film to the big screen as well as to fund subsequent showings throughout the year.

Event sponsorship levels include advertising space as well as personal tribute opportunities. Tickets to the premiere are sold separately.

Deadline for Sponsorships is March 22, 2019

Sponsorship Options

If you would like to become a Founding or Event Sponsor, you may purchase through PayPal or simply fill out the form below.  We will be in touch within 24 hours. Thank you.

Interested in becoming:
Name *
Address *

As always, NCJW San Antonio is profoundly grateful for the tremendous support it has received from the community for this important, ambitious endeavor.  Our many thanks to the following founding sponsors who have helped support this project:


Janet & Paul

Senator Jose Menendez

Judge Bonnie Reed &
Stu Schlossberg

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Alternatively, if you would like to simply donate to this project, click the button below.  And thank you!