About Us -- Chronology
Time Period
Major Accomplishments

Jewish-American Hall of Fame Chronology

  • 1994: Gerta Ries Wiener's last medal, honoring pioneer women's rights advocate Ernestine Rose, is issued when Gerta is 96 years old!
  • 1995: Elie Wiesel (medal by Alex Shagin and Mel Wacks) writes: "Thanks for the honor for which you have chosen me." Sculptor Alex Shagin wins the Saltus Award for Signal Achievement in the Art of the Medal, presented by the American Numismatic Society.

    Oskar Schindler medal by Marika Somogyi.

    Special Issue: Oskar Schindler medal, created by child survivor Marika Somogyi, is offered. In 1998, the Israel Government Coins & Medals Corporation licenses this design to be offered by them (in the name of the Magnes Museum).
  • 1996: The Houdini medal, created by Hal Reed and Mel Wacks, is front page news in Coin World. It is an innovative concept, consisting of two medals in one!
  • 1997: Barbra Streisand medal is sculpted by Alex Shagin.
    The video, "Visions: Jewish-American Hall of Fame" is updated by Mel Wacks and Bill Chayes, and is distributed by The Jewish Video Catalog.
    Web site inaugurated for the Jewish-American Hall of Fame: www.amuseum.org
  • 1998: Medal commemorating the Titanic - Jewish Connection features Ida & Isidor Straus, and David Sarnoff. Created by Alex Shagin and Mel Wacks. A large number are purchased by the Israel Government Coins & Medals Corporation, which sells them worldwide. Syndicated columnist, Peter Rexford (who is read by millions) writes that, "the Magnes Museum has issued a medal that's exquisitely engraved and takes a unique and poignant approach to the event."
    To commemorate Gerta Ries Wiener's 100th birthday this year (December 9) Mel Wacks nominates her for the Numismatic Art Award for Excellence in Medallic Sculpture, presented annually by the American Numismatic Association . and she wins! Mel also writes feature articles about the Jewish-American Hall of Fame medals created by Ms. Wiener, which is published in Coin World and The Shekel (magazine of the American Israel Numismatic Association).
    To complete the celebration, a small display - including an exact facsimile of Gerta's Numismatic Art Award for Excellence in Medallic Sculpture - was mounted next to the Jewish-American Hall of Fame display at the Magnes Museum.

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