In Memoriam: Estelle Gelman

Philanthropist established endowment for GW's Gelman Library.
October 27, 2009

GW Trustee Emerita and benefactor Estelle Gelman died on Oct. 23 at the age of 83. She lived in Palm Beach, Fla., and Washington, D.C.

In 1980, Mrs. Gelman established an endowment in the name of her late husband, Melvin Gelman, A.B. ’40, a longstanding supporter of the University, for whom GW’s Gelman Library is named. A philanthropist, Mrs. Gelman served on the GW Board of Trustees for 11 years and on the boards of many other nonprofit organizations including the Jewish Foundation for Group Homes, the United States Holocaust Museum and the American Cancer Society, where she served as the first female president.

Mrs. Gelman is survived by two daughters and five grandchildren. Several of her family members are graduates of GW, including a daughter, Elise Lefkowitz, a son-in-law, Marc Lefkowitz, and a granddaughter, Charlotte (Charlie) Lefkowitz.

Funeral services were held Oct. 25 at the Adas Israel Congregation in Washington. In lieu of flowers, contributions may be made to the Alzheimer’s Association or GW's  Gelman Library.

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