Sylvan A. Dogoloff

Taught elementary school, served as administrator at junior high schools and city community college

April 02, 2009|By Frederick N. Rasmussen | Frederick N. Rasmussen,

Sylvan A. Dogoloff, a retired Baltimore public school teacher and administrator, died Tuesday of congestive heart failure at his Upper Park Heights home. He was 90.

Mr. Dogoloff was born in Kiev, Russia, immigrated to Baltimore with his family in 1921 and settled in the old Jewish neighborhood near the historic Lloyd Street Synagogue in East Baltimore.

Growing up, he worked in Dogoloff's Grocery, his parents' Reisterstown Road store. He was a 1936 graduate of City College and earned a bachelor's degree from the Johns Hopkins University in 1940.

In 1961, he earned a master's degree in education from Western Maryland College, now McDaniel College.

During World War II, Mr. Dogoloff worked as an inspector at the Glenn L. Martin Co. plant in Middle River and also for the Navy at the Engineering Research Corp. in College Park.

After the war, he began his teaching career in 1946 at Irvington Elementary School in Southwest Baltimore. In 1957, he joined the faculty of Gen. Henry Lee Junior High School, where he taught and was also vice principal.

Mr. Dogoloff was unit head at Calverton Junior High School before being named assistant dean of admissions at Baltimore City Community College in 1971.

Jerome A. Cohen, former dean of continuing education at Baltimore City Community College on Liberty Heights Avenue, is an old friend.

"The best way to describe Sylvan is to say that he was a mensch. He was good to everyone," Dr. Cohen said.

"We worked together and he was an excellent administrator. He had a wonderful reputation for working with and following up on students," he said. "I also knew him to be a good teacher and just a good person."

Leona S. Morris, who had been dean of student personnel at the college and later became senior reporter at WJZ-TV, is a former colleague and friend.

"Sylvan was very meticulous in his work and very interested in the students. He was a soft-spoken man and an excellent person with whom to work," Miss Morris recalled.

"The students always found him sympathetic and interested in their problems, and he was a very good counselor," she said. "He was just a good guy."

Family members often sought out Mr. Dagoloff for his counsel regarding educational or occupational choices.

In addition to being an educator, from 1950 to 1960, he was the owner and operator of Camp Merrily, a Marriottsville summer day camp.

Mr. Dogoloff retired in 1985.

"Wherever we went, former students would come up and say, 'Mr. Dogoloff, do you remember me? You taught me so and so,' " said his daughter, Chaya L. Wexler of Owings Mills. "He was so well-known to so many people outside of the Jewish community. It really was incredible."

In 1942, Mr. Dogoloff married Shirley Barron, whom he had meet when both were students at Hopkins.

Mrs. Dogoloff, also an educator who taught French and Latin, was a faculty member at Gen. Henry Lee Junior High at the same time her husband was vice principal.

"He was actually her supervisor. I guess it worked out. They stayed married," Mrs. Wexler said, laughing.

Mrs. Dogoloff died in 1994.

Mr. Dogoloff was an accomplished woodcarver who worked at the Pikesville Senior Citizens Center.

"He made beautiful menorahs and even a desk for me," his daughter said.

He also enjoyed travel.

Mr. Dogoloff was a longtime member of the Baltimore Hebrew Congregation, where he was a Sunday school teacher.

Services will be held at 3 p.m. today at Sol Levinson & Bros. Inc., 8900 Reisterstown Road.

Also surviving is a granddaughter.

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