“You have to care about what’s going on around you and for you.” —Rhoda Mayerson, who passed away on May 12.

“You have to care about what’s going on around you and for you.” —Rhoda Mayerson, who passed away on May 12.



Rhoda Mayerson, who passed away on May 12, 2021 at the age of 98, was a contributor to the Cincinnati Jewish community, as well as the greater Cincinnati community.

“You have to care about what’s going on around you and for you,” said Rhoda Mayerson during an interview in 2014. She was speaking of the importance of community and legacy. She and her late husband Manuel (Manny) Mayerson were philanthropists in Cincinnati, and in 1986 created The Manuel D. and Rhoda Mayerson Foundation to reflect their motto of “give while you live.”

“My parents were always very, very involved in community work,” said their son Neal Mayerson. “That’s what I saw as a child; they were out many nights of the week, they were on many boards, they were participating in community events in the Jewish community and outside of the Jewish community. I think I learned the lesson to be involved and to understand each of us are part of a bigger whole.”

Rhoda was as active in the decision-making process as Manuel. Their Foundation contributed to building the new Jewish Community Center in Amberley that is named the Mayerson JCC.

The couple also started the Hebrew Free Loan Society in the 1980s, now part of the Cincinnati Jewish Interest Free Loan program, which provides interest-free loans to Jewish borrowers in the Cincinnati area. The Mayerson Foundation’s support has also enabled ProKids, a local nonprofit organization that helps break the cycle of child abuse and neglect, to grow over the past decade. 

Rhoda played an instrumental role in creating JVS Career Services VIP Program to support individuals with special needs and served on the Hilb Scholarship Committee for many years.

A private, family-only, graveside funeral service was held for Rhoda. Respects can be paid via notes to the family sent to The Mayerson Foundation, or donations can be made to the Cincinnati Children’s Hospital Medical Center in care of the Mayerson Center for Safe and Healthy Children, and to Artswave.

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