Statement on the events in Pittsburgh

October 29, 2018

The University of Toronto condemns the horrific and abhorrent shooting at the Tree of Life synagogue in Pittsburgh.

With great sadness, we have learned that a University of Toronto alumna was among those killed by this hateful act. Joyce Fienberg (née Libman) grew up attending the Holy Blossom Temple in Forest Hill and graduated from University College in 1964 with a degree in social psychology. She retired from the Learning Research & Development Center at the University of Pittsburgh in 2008. Mrs Fienberg returned to Toronto as recently as 2017 to accept a University College Alumni of Influence Award on behalf of her late husband Stephen Fienberg, University Professor emeritus of Statistics and Social Science at Carnegie Mellon University. The Fienberg family has deep roots at UC.

Joyce Fienberg was known to her friends and colleagues as a warm and loving individual, with a keen mind and a generous heart. She was a shining example of kindness to everyone who knew her. May her memory be a blessing.

In the wake of this senseless and appalling massacre, we are reminded, again, of the grim toll that antisemitism and racism exact on society. On behalf of the entire University, I extend deepest condolences to the Jewish community at U of T and beyond. We stand with you in these sad times.

I encourage anyone in need of personal support, including counseling or chaplaincy services, to take advantage of our local resources:

St. George, Health and Wellness Centre
UTSC, Health and Wellness Centre
UTM, Health & Counselling Centre
Community Safety Office
Campus Chaplains Association
Employee Assistance Program