CWRU Links

BRILLIANT, NATHAN

BRILLIANT, NATHAN (4 Sept. 1894-Nov. 1983) was a leader in Cleveland's Jewish educational activities for more than 3 decades. He came from New York, where he had graduated from City College of New York and earned a master's degree in education from Columbia Univ. Besides teaching English for 6 years in the New York City Public Schools, he served as teacher and administrator in 2 Jewish schools there. He came to Cleveland in 1927 to become educational director at the Euclid Avenue Temple (see ANSHE CHESED). He remained in that post 19 years, overseeing a 1,000-pupil Sunday school and co-authoring Religious Pageants for Jewish Schools in 1941 with Mrs. Libbie L. Braverman, who became his successor. In 1946 Brilliant became director of Cleveland's BUREAU OF JEWISH EDUCATION, where he coordinated the activities of all the religious schools in the Jewish community. One of his accomplishments was a unified school transportation system made necessary by the increasing dispersion of the Jewish population. Brilliant also lectured on Jewish contemporary philosophy at Western Reserve Univ. (see CASE WESTERN RESERVE) and was elected president of the National Council for Jewish Education in 1956. He was co-author of several other texts on Jewish education and a frequent contributor to periodicals on the subject. On the occasion of his retirement in 1960, he was presented with a trip to Israel. A lifelong bachelor, Brilliant died in Miami Beach, Fla.