1 Hand-coloured photograph (see Photographic Database -
Sara Sitomirsky was born in Montreal, 1928, the daughter of Ruth and Max Zitomir. After moving with her family to Ottawa, she attended the Ottawa High School of Commerce where she graduated in 1947 with a General Business and Secretarial Diploma. In 1948 she commenced employment with the Federal Government and continued in the Public Service until her retirement in 1983. Latterly, she worked for the Dept. of Supply and Services and became President of the Purchasing Management Association of Canada, 1979-1980.
She worked for the Ottawa real Estate Board after retirement and then moved to White Rock, British Columbia in 1990. She died there in 2001. She never married. She was related to Ruth Levitan.
Information for Sara and Zev is found in both of the following paragraphs. More detailed listings of activities of both Zev and Sara can be found in their CVs, newspaper clippings, and a handful of other articles located in the Vered Family file in the Archives office.
He was born Zev ben Arye Leb (Wolf Wirth) in 1926, in Oberhausen, Germany. In 1935 the family of six escaped Hitler's Germany and moved to Palestine. Zev did not graduate high school, but rather had to work to help support the family. He became a commander in the Haganah and fought in the War of Independence. In 1948 he also met his future wife, Sara.
They moved to Canada to study after marrying in 1950. Both attended McGill University as that institution's first Israeli students. Zev studied Engineering (B. Eng. 1954) and Sara studied Political Science-Economics until the birth of first child, Gilad. In 1956 Zev and Sara moved to Ottawa where he established thriving construction and development companies ( Arnon Development Corp., Ron Engineering and Construction, Gilad Parking) and worked on many high-profile projects. He was married for 58 years to Sara, with whom he had three children: Gilad, Arnon and Ron.
Zev became a leading builder in Ottawa, taking on the reconstruction of the Peace Tower, the construction of the Nortel Skyline Campus and numerous other office buildings in the city. He was most proud of the new city hall complex in Jerusalem that his company designed and built in the 90s.
Zev endowed the University of Ottawa’s Heart Institute, making an extraordinary impact on its evolution. He established scholarships at Carleton and McGill. With Sara, he established the Vered Israel Cultural and Educational program at the Soloway Jewish Community Centre and the Vered Jewish Canadian Studies Program at the University of Ottawa.
He was an active volunteer and philanthropist in the Jewish and non-Jewish communities, a recipient of an honorary doctorate from the University of Ottawa in 1988, and an Order of Canada recipient in 2003.
Zev died at the University of Ottawa Heart Institute on June 9, 2008.
Sara Charpak was born in Tel Aviv in 1930 to Russian-Ukrainian immigrant parents, and grew up in Jerusalem. She was a teenager when she served as a wireless operator in the War of Independence. She was stationed first at the Hebrew University, and was in Jerusalem during the siege. She was subsequently sent to the southern front. After 1948, Sara graduated from an accelerated course for teachers, and taught young children in an absorption centre near Ramat Gan.
In 1978, Sara received a B.A. in Art History and Religion from Carleton University. She was the recipient of an honorary doctorate from the University of Ottawa in 1988.
With Zev, Sara was a dedicated supporter of the National Gallery and its Foundation, and among its Founding Partners, as well as a Docent. She continues to be a great friend to institutions of higher learning in the National Capital Region, as well as the National Arts Centre.
Sara is also involved in scientific and educational exchanges, notably the Weizmann Institute Charpak/Vered Exchange Fellowship. She has served on numerous Boards, has chaired numerous projects and events (UJA, CICF) and lectured widely. Sara and Zev were presented with the Outstanding Individual Philanthropist Award from the NSFRE in 1999.
Sara Vered is one of 15 recipients of the first Order of Ottawa awards, and was inducted into the Order during a formal ceremony at City Hall on November 22, 2012.
In 2013 she was appointed to the Order of Canada for her leadership in Ottawa’s voluntary sector and for her support of education, health care, and organizations dedicated to art and culture.