Baruch Dayan Ha’Emet

Carol Amster

February 17, 1935 – February 12, 2022


It is with heavy hearts we announce the death of our dear friend and stalwart supporter of the Jewish Community, Carol Amster z”l, on Shabbat, February 12, 2022 – just five days shy of her 87th birthday.

Carol, along with her beloved husband Herb z”l, passionately and generously supported and sustained cultural institutions and charitable causes throughout the community. We are deeply grateful that included among these organizations are the Jewish Community Center, the Jewish Federation, Jewish Family Services, Hebrew Day School, University of Michigan Hillel, and Beth Israel Congregation.

Carol and Herb were involved in the establishment and success of many programs and organizations that form much of the core of the organized greater Jewish community in Washtenaw County. Together, they made it their life’s work to build a strong local Jewish community, and their enthusiastic generosity and involvement provided the guidance and resources to turn big visions into the reality we are privileged to experience today.

Carol was actively involved as a volunteer and as a professional. She worked as a fundraiser at UM Hillel, as director of the United Jewish Appeal (UJA), and was the Jewish community’s first professional “Federation” director upon the merger of the UJA with the Jewish Community Council in 1986. She served on and chaired Federation’s Allocations Committee for many years, and most recently lent her wisdom and counsel to the Covid Emergency Fund allocations process.

After Herb’s death in 2010, Carol helped launch the Herb Amster Center at Jewish Family Services of Washtenaw County to honor Herb and to bring long-term financial stability to the organization. This visionary initiative has enabled JFS to offer their expertise to those who can pay — in order to continue serving those in the community who cannot.

Carol’s lifetime of involvement was not limited to the Jewish community. She devoted time, money, and resources to key organizations in Ann Arbor, serving on many boards including the Ann Arbor Area Community Foundation, UMS, Ann Arbor Symphony Orchestra, and the NEW Center. She and Herb established the Herbert and Carol Amster Lupus Research Fund at the University of Michigan.

Carol received the Celebration of Women volunteer award, and together, she and Herb were recipients of the Federation’s Humanitarian Award.

“A woman of valor, who can find? Far beyond pearls is her value….She opens her mouth with wisdom, and lesson of kindness is on her tongue” (Proverbs 31). Carol was a true Eishet Chayil (a women of valor) – a beloved family matriarch and stalwart champion of our community. We all benefited from her generosity and her wise counsel. “Give her the fruits of her hand and let her be praised in the gates by her very own deeds.”

The memorial will take place at Beth Israel Congregation Tuesday, February 15 at 10:00am followed by internment at Arborcrest. Click here to view current guidelines to attend in person. Click here to view on the Beth Israel YouTube channel.

May Carol’s memory be for a blessing, and may the entire Amster family be comforted among the mourners of Zion and Jerusalem. Baruch Dayan Ha’Emet. ברוך דיין האמת