Howard Blitman of Scarsdale, NY and Nantucket, MA died on Jan. 3, 2021 in Scarsdale. He was 94 years old. Howard is survived by his wife, Maureen, children Barbara, Lee and Robin and eight grandchildren.
Howard served in World War II and the Korean War. His WWII unit liberated one of the concentration camps; this experience left an indelible impression on him.
Howard earned a BS in Civil Engineering from Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute (RPI) in 1950 and a MA in political science from the New School of Social Research in New York City in 1976. For 65 years Howard served as a trustee, supporter and volunteer on behalf of RPI. He was active in the National Society of Professional Engineers where he and Maureen sponsored The Maureen L. & Howard N. Blitman, PE., Scholarship to promote Diversity in Engineering. Howard’s life-long support of education extended to Shirat HaYam. For eight years, starting in 2011, Howard donated the travel costs of Rabbinical students who were invited to lead summer services and study groups.
Howard joined The Blitman Construction Corporation in 1970. In 1981, he formed the Blitman Building Corporation and was involved in many projects including the Customs House of the New York World Trade Center.
Howard loved Nantucket and was very active. He served as treasurer, of the Nantucket Land Council, was a board member of the Maria Mitchell Association and Nantucket Center for Elder Affairs. He also represented the Quidnet-Squam residents on the Nantucket Civic League and chaired the Advisory Committee of Non-Voting Taxpayers. At his Squam home by the sea Howard was very proud of his extensive flower gardens.
In Scarsdale Howard was chairman of the Scarsdale’s Board of Architectural Review and was elected as a trustee for the village of Scarsdale and served as deputy mayor. He was a long-serving member of Reconstructing Judaism’s Board of Governors. On Sept. 13, 2020 at Bet Am Shalom, where he was a long-time member, he was presented with the organization’s Presidential Recognition Award. In presenting this award, Rabbi Deborah Waxman said, “Your focus, Howard, if it’s not on your family, your focus is on the future. You are a true Reconstructionist, always looking forward, curious and confident.”
Howard was a founding member, President and Director Emeritus of Congregation Shirat HaYam.
May his memory be for a blessing.