Dr. Julia B. Peyser

Published 3:36pm Friday, February 15, 2013

1926 – 2013

We honor the brilliant and beautiful Julia B. Peyser, a shining representative of humanity, who was passionate about reading, dancing, directing theatre, teaching, writing, and her family, and whose effortless and magnificent smile never will be forgotten. At sixteen, Julia was Valedictorian of her class at Mamaroneck High School, and she implemented her inherent best academically, personally and collectively for the rest of her life.


She received her BA in English and Spanish from NYU in 1947, and her MA in Education from Columbia University, City of New York, in 1948.  In 1985, she earned her Ph.D in Educational Psychology from Andrews University in Berrien Springs, Michigan. She was a member of Phi Beta Kappa, the National Education Association, the Michigan Education Association, and a member of numerous affiliations, including educational, philanthropic, and arts institutions.
Julia devoted herself to the attainment of knowledge and unceasingly advocated for those who are challenged in their quest for voice and presence and therefore must be recognized.  She believed that children must be nurtured by giving them the tools to attain knowledge, confidence, wisdom, and compassion through clear direction, admiration and respect.  She led her accomplished and optimistic life with dignity, poise, and perseverance.  In the 1970’s, she served as Principal of Kennedy School in the Penn-Harris-Madison School District of northern Indiana, and earlier in her career, she was a beloved and innovative speech therapist and Assistant Principal of Norwood and Ocean Avenue Elementary Schools in Northport, New York.  Julia had a resonant, articulate, and perfectly enunciated speaking voice, and listening to her speak and read was a distinct pleasure. She was duly respected by all as an innovative and beloved teacher and administrator, and both Julia and her husband, Dr. Joseph L. Peyser, remained highly regarded scholars throughout their lives, as well as role models and loving parents to their children, J. Randall Peyser and Jan Ellen Peyser.  Frequently smiling her magnificent smile, Julia taught us all to be better, wiser, and loving human beings.  She will be missed beyond any words can relay.
Dr. Julia B. Peyser is survived by her devoted children, Jan Ellen Peyser and J. Randall Peyser, adoring grandchildren Lisa Renee Stamm, Jason Philip Stamm, and Benjamin Peyser, son-in-law Dr. Raymond E. Gleason, daughter-in-law Sherri Wolfgang-Peyser, and sister-in-law Jeanne Peyser-Kaunitz.  Duly inspired and commemorative speeches and services were presented by her children, grandchildren, and Rabbi Eric Siroka on February 7, 2013.  With her beloved husband, Dr. Joseph L. Peyser, the incomparable Dr. Julia B. Peyser will dance through eternity from their cliffside resting place at historic Riverview Cemetary overlooking Pinhook Lagoon in South Bend, Indiana.
Anyone who would like to make a contribution in Dr. Julia B. Peyser’s name is welcome to do so at the South Bend Civic Theatre, 215 W. Madison Street, P.O. Box 1146, South Bend, Indiana 46601.

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