Olivia Marks-Woldman OBE
I joined the Holocaust Memorial Day Trust (HMDT) as Chief Executive in February 2012. I have overseen the growth of Holocaust Memorial Day (HMD) around the country and a hugely increased media presence.
I believe passionately that everyone, regardless of age or background, should know about the Holocaust, Nazi Persecution and the subsequent genocides, and should set aside time to remember all those who suffered. I feel fortunate to be working for an organisation that enables people to do this, that encourages people to consider their own responsibilities, and that puts the life stories of those who were murdered and those who survived at the centre of commemorations.
Before joining HMDT, I worked in a number of other charities, mainly in roles that involved political lobbying, policy development and stakeholder engagement.
As Director of Public Engagement and Deputy Chief Executive, I oversee both our Outreach and Communications functions, ensuring the two complement and support each other. I support all our key organisational activities, develop our knowledge and expertise and represent HMDT externally.
I have been dedicated to Holocaust education for a long time as I feel very strongly that we need to both learn and teach about the Holocaust and subsequent genocides to remember the victims, honour the survivors, and to try to learn lessons from the past. I am fortunate to be working in a position at HMDT that allows me to continue learning and teaching about the Holocaust, and hope to inspire and motivate others to do the same.
I have completed a doctorate in Holocaust Studies at Royal Holloway, University of London, and published a book based on my research in 2017, entitled The Female Administrators of the Third Reich. I am also an educator for March of the Living UK. In addition, I have an MA in Holocaust Studies from UCL, and am a Fellow of the Imperial War Museum in Holocaust Education.
Since October 2021 I have had the honour to work as a Gedenkdiener at Holocaust Memorial Day Trust through the Austrian organisation Gedenkdienst (Holocaust Memorial Service). Its goal is to promote Holocaust education and commemoration in Austria and abroad.
At HMDT I support the team in many different areas, such as research for the ceremony and our resources on the Holocaust, subsequent genocides, and current topics, communications, outreach, and administrative work for various projects. Additionally, I manage the activity map and co-moderate the online memorial book.
I am delighted to have the opportunity to contribute to HMDT and thus make a difference, not only to commemorate the past of the country I grew up in but also to actively promote Holocaust and genocide education and commemoration in the UK. I am convinced that this is the first and most important step towards a more just and peaceful future.
I am Senior Education Officer. My role is to support teachers in primary, secondary and SEND schools to mark Holocaust Memorial Day with their students. I create resources such as assemblies, lesson plans, activities and projects, and am the contact person for any questions teachers may have.
I work in partnership with organisations across the UK to raise awareness of Holocaust Memorial Day in schools, and to continue to offer a varied, engaging, age appropriate and historically accurate education offer.
Our resources teach about the Holocaust, Nazi persecution of other groups, and the genocides that have happened since. They feature testimony so students feel a connection to the history through personal stories, and highlight contemporary relevance and actions we can take today to make the world a safer place.
I joined the Holocaust Memorial Day Trust team as Education Officer in April 2017, following a career in arts and heritage education in museums, schools and cultural organisations.
Prior to HMDT, I worked in the Charity sector and in Professional Services in a variety of positions including finance, administration, training, events management and client relationship management.
I feel honoured to be working with such a dedicated and knowledgeable team of people and to have the privilege to meet survivors and hear their stories firsthand. Remembering and teaching people about the past is essential so that we don’t forget and are able to learn from mistakes to create a better future.
I joined HMDT in November 2021 as Senior Outreach Officer. My role is to support the organisation in increasing the number of Holocaust Memorial Day activities that are organised or supported by local government, including new and existing local community organisations and to manage, coordinate and support our team of support workers.
Prior to joining HMDT, I project managed a number of local heritage projects in partnership with a variety of organisations and communities. I have a doctorate in Jewish history and heritage, and I am a Visiting Fellow at The Parkes Institute for the Study of Jewish/non-Jewish Relations, University of Southampton.
It is a privilege to be part of HMDT. I firmly believe in the power of education and significance of acts of remembering to increase understanding of diversity, inclusion and tolerance within our communities.
I joined HMDT as Events Officer in June 2021. My role is to help coordinate the HMD Ceremony and the different elements involved, including the contributors, guests and managing our event management and production teams.
I have always worked in event management, primarily in the charity sector, and my previous experience includes working for Cancer Research UK, Crisis and Tennis First. I have a history degree from Edinburgh University and a personal interest in the Holocaust and the persecution of different groups by Nazi Germany, having had family members flee from Prague and settle in the UK during the Second World War.
I feel privileged to work at HMDT and to play my own part in organizing the Ceremony, thereby helping to ensure the stories of all Genocides continue to be told and heard by as many people as possible.
As Finance and Operations Administrator I ensure the smooth running of the office at HMDT, providing a first-class customer service to all HMDT’s stakeholders. I am passionate about supporting the most vulnerable and giving a voice to marginalised groups.
Over the years I have worked for many large corporations and in the last 7 years I have focused my career in the charity sector. My most recent role was supporting a small team in providing a befriending and mentoring service to disadvantage families through a network of dedicated volunteers within the local community. This helped to facilitate positive changes in people’s lives.
Away from work you will often find me volunteering, keeping fit (trying!) or at a piano where I am most happy playing French impressionist music such as Ravel. I am honoured to work at HMDT and doing my bit in helping to raise awareness and learn from the past while preserving the life stories of survivors of genocide.
I joined HMDT in May 2020 as their first Fundraiser. My role will be to develop the infrastructure of the fundraising function so that we can enhance how we look after our supporters. I will identify new sources of funding for HMDT to enable the organisation to support the growth in HMD.
Prior to joining HMDT, I worked as a Consultant, advising charities on fundraising, events and communications strategy. I had the privilege to count the Anne Frank Trust and the National Holocaust Centre amongst my clients. Both organisations gave me the opportunity to gain an incredible insight into the power of learning from the atrocities of the past to create a brighter and more positive future through education. I was honoured to work with survivors and I am now excited to be working with an organisation that ensures their life stories are heard and widely shared.
As Senior Communications Officer, I oversee media engagement for each Holocaust Memorial Day (HMD) and coordinate media engagement throughout the year, preparing statements and supporting key relationships with journalists to implement HMDT’s positioning strategy.
I am also responsible for developing HMDT’s survivor engagement strategy, ensuring that the experiences of those affected by the Holocaust and genocide are included in resources, online content and at events. It is a huge honour and a solemn responsibility to share the experiences of Holocaust and genocide survivors with a wide audience.
Prior to joining HMDT, I worked as a multimedia journalist for the BBC World Service. Outside the office you’ll find me in the kitchen (next stop MasterChef!). I am also a terrible cricketer.
As Senior Outreach Officer (Youth), my role is to support the organisation to increase their reach with young people through creative engagement projects, online resources, building partnerships and other outreach activities. I oversee HMDT’s annual youth projects, which have included photography competitions and exhibitions. Ultimately, I aim to support young people across the country to mark HMD and learn more about the steps leading to the Holocaust and other genocides.
Before HMDT, I managed the youth services for a local branch of the mental health charity Mind and prior to this I worked in homelessness prevention at a youth charity in London. Through all of my roles I have strived to take a youth-led approach, ensuring the interests and needs of young people are central to the work I carry out.
I believe educating young people about the steps which lead to genocide and persecution are crucial to building a safer society equipped to challenge prejudice and discrimination, and I feel privileged to be able to work towards this.
I joined HMDT in April 2021 as Executive Support Officer. I provide support to the CEO and Board of Trustees. Prior to working at HMDT I worked in the Professional Services sector and as a volunteer CRM trainer for another charity. I also teach singing. I hold a degree in Maths and Music from the University of Birmingham.
Many people are unaware of what happened during the Holocaust and genocides, and of their relevance today. I am committed to the work of HMDT to raise awareness so that everyone can be secure and fulfil their lives without threat of persecution.
I have worked and volunteered in the charity sector for the last six years, having previously worked in design. My roles have involved supporting homeless people and minority communities, many of whom had fled conflict in their home country. This has made me passionate about promoting understanding and tolerance within our communities, and raising awareness of human rights abuses.
At a time when so much of our communication is online, I am pleased to be able to use digital platforms to reach so many people with the important message of HMDT.
Freelance Support Workers
Our Outreach Team is also supported by freelance support workers who encourage and support organisations in identified sectors across the UK to mark HMD. Currently the team consists of:
Shirley Lennon – Northern Ireland – [email protected]