YANKEV LEVINZON (July 1, 1975-June 15, 1955)
He was born in the city of Kovno, Lithuania, into a rabbinical family. He attended religious elementary school and yeshivas. He received ordination into the rabbinate in 1896 and from 1897 was rabbi in various Lithuanian communities. He came to the United States in 1906, was a rabbi in Chicago and Los Angeles until 1917, and later settled in New York where he was the administrator of a pedagogical institute for the Mizrachi organization. For many years he was president of the American Mizrachi and director of the Orthodox Council of Rabbis in New York. He was the author of religious texts which were well-known in the scholarly world, works such as the two-volume Meḥkare avot (Studies of the [Ethics of the] Fathers). He co-edited: Di mizrakhi-velt (The Mizrachi world) (New York, 1919-1920); Idisher veg-vayzer (Jewish guide) (New York, 1922-1925); and Der mizraḥi-veg (The Mizrachi way) (New York, 1935-1947). He contributed as well to Unzer shtime (Our voice) (1925-1926) and Morgn-zhurnal (Morning journal)—in New York. He served as editor-in-chief of the rabbinic Or hamizraḥ (Light of the east) in New York, and he was an important contributor to the encyclopedia Otsar yisrael (Treasury of Israel), in which he published as well under the pen name “Y. L-n.” He died in New York.
Sources: Ben-Tsien Ayzenshtadt, Dorot haaḥaronim (Generations of the later rabbis), (New York, 1937), p. 30; N. Godon, in Tog-morgn-zhurnal (New York) (June 22, 1955); obituary notices in the Jewish press in New York (June 16-17, 1955); M. Ginzburg, in Keneder odler (Montreal) (June 24, 1955); Z. Gold, N. Telushin, A. Burak, and M. Kirshblum, in Or hamizraḥ (Elul [= August-September] 1966).
Khayim Leyb Fuks