Jim Auerbach, of Silver Spring, died on Oct. 7.
He is survived by his beloved wife of 35 years, Margery (Berman) Auerbach. He was the devoted father of two children from a first marriage, James (Ann) and Jeff (Debbi). He is also survived by three cherished grandchildren, Jonathan, Coleman and Skylar, and his brother Bob of Detroit.
Born on January 18, 1943 in Trenton, NJ, he grew up in New York City. He graduated from New York University with a history degree and earned a Master’s degree in history from the University of Maryland.
He taught history at a private high school and worked with special needs children in a public elementary school, both in New York City. He taught history at Somerset Community College in New Jersey, where he was active in the American Federation of Teachers, becoming president of the NJ State Federation of Teachers.
Active in Democratic politics in New Jersey, he served as delegate to the Democratic National Convention in 1976. Jim relocated to Silver Spring and served as the Assistant Director of Education for the AFL-CIO in Washington.
He then became the Senior Vice President of the National Policy Association in Washington, DC, bringing together business, labor and education leaders to work cooperatively on social and economic policy issues.
He also taught labor history as an Adjunct Instructor at the University of Virginia and was an instructor in labor relations at the US Department of State Foreign Service Institute.
After his retirement, Jim pursued his passion for photography, winning many awards for his nature and landscape photos. He taught digital photography at Holiday Park Senior Center in Silver Spring and mentored many budding photographers. He was active in several camera clubs, including the Silver Spring Camera Club, Montgomery County Camera Club and Holiday Park Camera Club.
He exhibited his photos widely and enjoyed presenting travelogues about his travels around the world. Jim and his wife traveled extensively, including two safaris in Africa, and trips to Israel, China, India, Vietnam, Cuba, many European countries and throughout the US.
His favorite place was Santa Fe, where the mountains and the light provided inspiration for his photography. He was a dedicated member of Bet Aviv congregation in Columbia, MD. J
im was a founding member of the Meeting House gallery, which chooses and oversees rotating exhibits featuring local artists. Jim’s other great passion was dancing, especially DC Hand Dancing.
There never was a bigger smile on his face than when he was dancing. He graduated from Hand Dance programs at Smooth N Easy, Lincoln Theatre in DC and Simply Swing Dance Academy.
Contributions can be made to Bet Aviv congregation or Montgomery Hospice, 1355 Piccard Drive, Rockville, MD 20850.