I first met Meir Ribalow in 1982, when he and his family chose Hadassah Magazine to administer a literary prize in memory of his father, Harold. For the 30 years Meir and I worked together on the prize I was always moved by his dedication to his father’s memory. From the beginning of our friendship, Meir also had an impact on Hadassah Magazine that went well beyond the publication of an excerpt from each year’s winning book.
Fiction had lost its place in daily journalism by the midtwentieth century; by the 1980s, it was fast disappearing from mainstream magazines as well. It was Meir who reminded me that the truth often found in fiction and drama, two of the many arts he practiced, was by no means incompatible with fact-based journalism. He inspired us not only to keep fiction in our pages but also to expand the magazine’s arts coverage as well. When Meir died last August, I lost a dear friend. But this magazine continues to be enriched by his influence.