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gershmanEd. note: Arguably the most enthusiastic promoter of Manitoba tourism ever, George Gershman has passed away at the age of 93.

A canvass of our archives reveals that George’s name appeared in our paper over 100 times. What we offer to readers here are excerpts from three articles that were featured within the pages of The Jewish Post & News at different times. As Myron Love notes in the first excerpt, George had three different chapters in his long and varied career - with the Shaarey Zedek Synagogue, Glendale Country Club, and Charter House Hotel. George used to love to say that  he went “from the house of pray to the house of play to the house of stay”.
Never one short for words, George Gershman had an opinion on just about everything, but for the thousands of people who were fortunate to have met him, his unbridled enthusiasm for whatever cause he was championing was infectious. He will be forever missed.
The following piece was written by Myron Love in 2012:
 George Gershman has always loved whatever occupation he has pursued, be that youth director for the Shaarey Zedek (1949-59), general manager of the Glendale Country Club (1960-1980) or general manager and CEO of the Charter House Hotel (1980-1995).
Just turned 89, Gershman is still active and exudes a youthful joie de vivre. He has been recognized many times over the years for both his professional and volunteer accomplishments. His most recent honour came about on Thursday, May 20, when Tourism Winnipeg bestowed on Gershman its Lifetime Achievement Award.
“Before there was Linkedin, Twitter and Facebook connecting the tourism industry, there was George Gershman,” said Marina James, president of Tourism Winnipeg, at the presentation. “His love of people and his keen interest in sharing information are at the heart of his personality. And with that, he has a special ability to connect with others in a way to create change.
At 89, Winnipeg’s tourism leader continues to spread the good word about the city.
With his twinkling blue eyes and friendly charm, George continues to push for change for tourism on the Provincial Taxi Board. His incredible list of contributions include serving on the board of Can-Man Tourism Agreement; Canada Customs; Tourism Winnipeg; Tourism Alliance for Western & Northern Canada; and Folklorama, where he was personally credited for advocating a two-week event in order to attract more tourists. He has won awards from Tourism Magazine, the Hall of Fame Tourism Promotion of Merit by Tourism Industry of Manitoba, a Tourism Ambassador Award from Travel Manitoba, and the prestigious City of Winnipeg Community Service Award in 2007. He was the founder and chairman behind “Be a Hometown Tourist” program, which encouraged locals to recognize what we have in this city. And he has served as president for the Tourism Association of Winnipeg and vice president for the Tourism Industry of Manitoba.
In accepting the award, Gershman spoke of the importance in life of being positive. He also passed on some of his motivational watchwords. “You got to circulate to percolate and you have to contact to contract,” he said. “There are four fundamentals to leading a long and healthy life – diet, exercise, staying active and having a supportive wife.”
He has been married to Gloria for 63 years.
Gershman continues to serve on the Manitoba Taxi Board and the Transportation Options Network for Seniors. He remains a consultant for the Shaftesbury Park Retirement Residence

The following excerpt  is from a 2009 column by Myron:
Will Glendale’s alliance with Manitoba Club boost membership?
The irony of a strategic alliance between the largely Jewish Glendale Golf and Country Club and the prestigious 135-year-old Manitoba Club is certainly not lost on George Gershman. A former general manager of the Glendale Club and an honorary life member, the 86-year-old Gershman well remembers when the Manitoba Club was off limits to Jews and women. He recalls that Samuel Freedman, Manitoba’s first Jewish Chief Justice (who was elevated to the judiciary in 1960) would regularly refuse invitations to dine at the club because it wouldn’t accept Jewish members.
“I once attended a function at the Manitoba Club with my wife,” Gershman recalls. “The attendant at the door tried to insist that she enter through the women’s entrance at the side. I insisted that she walk in with me and we went in together.”

This final excerpt is from a  1991 column by the late Gene Telpner:
George Gershman, general manager of the Charterhouse, is a bundle of optimism about the future of the hotel business in this city.
Unlike any companies that are worried about G.S.T, and other tax situations, George said the future never looked better. Already, recent rankings of hotel-motel properties put his operation among the top ten Canadian properties. He also manages to serve on numerous boards in this city, and is a tower of strength in tourist promotion. Goodness knows this city needs all the tourists it can get.
A conversation with George Gershman either in person or on the phone is better than reading a newspaper. He is a veritable dictionary of information about every aspect of business in this community.
Some freely say that the Glendale Country Club has never been the same since George left its management several years ago for a new career.

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