Sheldon Grosberg was a ‘mensch of all mensches’

Sheldon Grosberg
Photo by Randy Sager Photography

Sheldon Irwin Grosberg, the founding executive director of the Garden of Remembrance and a past president of: the Jewish Council for the Aging, who had leadership roles in a long list of
Jewish and secular organizations, died on Sept. 1. The Chevy Chase resident was 80.

Grosberg was frequently described as a “mensch of all mensches” by those who knew him for his kind heart and exemplary commitment to community service and those in need, in both in the Jewish community and beyond.

David Gamse, CEO of the Jewish Council for the Aging, knew Grosberg for more than two decades.

“He was a consummate bridge builder,” Gamse said. “He connected our organization with others inside and beyond the Jewish community. I can say he was our number one advocate on public policy about aging because he was so involved. You name the issue and he was either a current board member, past board member or friends with the leaders.”

Grosberg was a member of the board of directors of The Jewish Community Relations Council of Greater Washington, The Jewish Federation of Greater Washington, Washington Adventist Hospital and Save A Child’s Heart. He served on the advisory board of the Clarksburg Community Hospital and the advisory council of the Jewish Social Service Agency.

“Sheldon Grosberg was a true communal mensch and leader,” Gil Preuss, the CEO of the Jewish Federation of Greater Washington, said in a statement. “His contributions across our Jewish community go beyond what was seen as he supported and helped each person and each family. Sheldon’s legacy will live on through the many people and institutions he touched. His wisdom and guidance will be deeply missed.”

Grosberg was a co-chair of the Jewish Community Relations Council of Greater Washington’s Maryland Commission. In 2017, he received the agency’s Community Leadership Award.

Grosberg worked over a long career at the U.S. House of Representatives, the Office of Economic Opportunity, the University of Maryland School of Social Work, for the Sassafras local clothing chain, a trade association in Alexandria and for the System Development

Gamse said Grosberg believed “people are good and that you can find a common ground with that goodness.”

He was the beloved husband of Judy Grosberg; devoted father of Michael (Carly) Grosberg; Joel (Orly) Grosberg; loving brother of Larry (Susan) Grosberg and Barbara (Eddie) Gauthier; and cherished grandfather of Rosie, Willa, Sasha and Noah.

Contributions may be made to the Jewish Council for the Aging (, Mobile Medical Care ( or Save a Child’s Heart ( Services entrusted to Sagel Bloomfield Danzansky Goldberg Funeral Care.

Staff Writer Samantha Cooper contributed to this article.

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