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Alfred Bader, of blessed memory (OBM), was born in Vienna and fled on the Kindertransport from Nazi Austria to England at the age of fourteen, ten months before the outbreak of World War II. In 1940, the British government ordered the internment of all refugees between the ages of 16-70; Alfred Bader was among those transported to a Canadian prisoner-of-war camp.

After his release in 1941, he was accepted at Queen’s University in Kingston, Ontario, where he qualified for two bachelor’s degrees and a master’s in chemistry. He went on to earn a PhD doctoral degree in organic chemistry at Harvard University in 1949. He worked in Milwaukee as a research chemist for the Pittsburgh Plate Glass Company and in 1950 founded Aldrich Chemicals, which today, as MilliporeSigma, is the world’s largest supplier of research chemicals.

After leaving then Sigma-Aldrich, he continued a fruitful career as an art collector and dealer. Bader and his family earned a reputation as generous benefactors, notably in the fields of chemistry, education, and Jewish interests. His personal philanthropy has been directed toward helping chemistry and art history students.

Dr. Alfred Bader's Birthday Commemorations

In honor of Dr. Alfred Bader, organizations are hosting various birthday commemorations all around the world.

United States

  • American Chemical Society
  • Bader Hillel Academy
  • Lubavitch of Wisconsin
  • Milwaukee Art Museum
  • University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee

Canada

  • Queen’s University at Kingston

Europe

  • Budapest University of Technology and Economics
  • Masaryk University
  • Quakers in Britain
  • Symphonova
  • The Rembrandt House Museum
  • The Wiener Holocaust Library
  • University of Edinburgh

American Chemical Society

The American Chemical Society honored Dr. Alfred Bader in an ad in the April 15, 2024, issue of its flagship publication Chemical & Engineering News, which reaches 200,000 scientists, as well as the worldwide chemistry community. ACS also featured Dr. Bader in an article in the April 2024 edition of its planned giving newsletter, Building Chemistry’s Future, which provides 40,000 individuals with financial and estate planning insights. At a March 17 donor reception during the ACS Spring 2024 conference in New Orleans, ACS CEO Albert Horvath proposed a toast in memory of Dr. Bader. “An esteemed ACS member and loyal supporter of the ACS Project SEED program, Dr. Bader will forever be remembered for his generosity and impact on countless students and on the Society,” Horvath said. The ACS member e-newsletter, ACS Matters, described the toast in its April 2 issue.

Please click here to view the full article and commemorations to Dr. Alfred Bader.

Bader Hillel Academy

Date: Friday, May 3, 2024

Bader Hillel Academy is hosting an Annual Education Day in honor of Dr. Alfred Bader on Friday, May 3rd, 2024. All of the students will learn about the life, history, and philanthropy of Dr. Alfred Bader on this day.

Budapest University of Technology and Economics

The Budapest University of Technology and Economics will be featuring an article about Dr. Alfred Bader. The article will be published in Hungarian in the spring issue of the Hungarian Jewish cultural magazine Múlt és Jövő (Past and Future).

Lubavitch of Wisconsin

In recognition of Dr. Alfred Bader’s passion for art and commitment to community, Lubavitch of Wisconsin will be placing a custom paint-by-number portrait of Dr. Alfred Bader at the Friendship Circle Cafe, Bakery, and Art Studio in Fox Point. Members of the community will participate in completing the portrait. When finalized, it will be displayed at the Lubavitch of Wisconsin office in Glendale.

Click here to view images of the event and the portrait of Dr. Alfred Bader.

Masaryk University

Location: Brno, Czech Republic

Masaryk University will be hosting a lecture followed by a reception that will include excursions to research laboratories, popularization of hands-on laboratory experiments, demonstrations, and video projections. Due to his Czech roots, Dr. Bader was passionate during his life about expanding high-level scientific research in the region.

Click here to view images from the event.

Milwaukee Art Museum

Date: Sunday, April 28, 2024

Time: 10 AM – 5 PM

Location: 700 N. Art Museum Drive, Milwaukee, WI 53202

The Milwaukee Art Museum will be hosting a free community day filled with activities, such as a scavenger hunt through the European Collection, local performing artists, a video featuring Dr. Alfred Bader, and sweet treats for all guests to enjoy.

Click here to learn more about the Free Community Day.

Click here to view pictures from the Free Community Day.

Quakers in Britain, The Wiener Holocaust Library, and Symphonova

Location: Friends House Library in Euston, London

This event combines presentations highlighting some of the many facets of Dr. Bader’s life, with musical illuminations conducted by Shelley Katz using the MicroSymphonova and joined by soprano Helen Bailey. Dr Barbara Warnock (Wiener Holocaust Library) will provide an Introduction to the Kindertransport, Marian McNichol (Quaker Asylum and Refugee Network) will share how Quakers are advocating for refugees today, and Professor Jeremy Sanders CBE (University of Cambridge) will present Dr. Alfred Bader’s contribution to the world of chemistry. The music reflects Alfred’s preference for the soprano voice with orchestra and includes works by Hans Krieg and Robert Kahn who both suffered under the Holocaust, and a premiere of Tribute and Celebration for Alfred Bader, generously composed for the event by Joe Kraemer.

Click here to view images and video from the event.

Click here to learn more about the MicroSymphonova.

Queen's University at Kingston

Location: Queen’s University, Kingston, Ontario, Canada

Generations of students have been touched by the generosity of the late Dr. Alfred Bader, BSc’45, BA’46, MSc’47, LLD’86. Inspired by the opportunities he received as a Queen’s student, Dr. Bader began a life-long association with the university that continues to enrich campus life.

From April 26-28, Queen’s will recognize what would have been Dr. Bader’s 100th birthday and will continue to celebrate his legacy and share his impact with future generations of students.

For more information, please contact judith.brown@queensu.ca

Click here to view all photos, videos, and testimonials from the week.

The Rembrandt House Museum

Location: The Rembrandt House Museum in Amsterdam, Netherlands

The Rembrandt House Museum will honor Dr. Alfred Bader by offering youth a week of art workshops devoted to Rembrandt’s painting techniques.

Click here to view images from the workshops.

The University of Edinburgh

Date: Sunday, April 28, 2024

Location: The Reid Concert Hall at the University of Edinburgh in Scotland

The University of Edinburgh will host an Institute for Music in Human and Social Development (IMHSD) Alumni Workshop at the Reid Concert Hall, welcoming back interdisciplinary PhD and MSc students, friends and colleagues to share their experiences since graduation, present their current work and meet with current PhD students and colleagues. The workshop will be followed by a small wine reception.

Click here to view pictures and materials from the event.

University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee

Date: Wednesday, April 17, 2024

Time: 11:00 AM – 1:00 PM

Location: Zelazo Center

The University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee will be hosting a campus-wide Bader Philanthropies Day. Guests will learn how Dr. Alfred Bader impacted the lives of students and faculty through the Sullivan Spaights and Hmong Advancement scholarships; the Jewish Studies Program, Project: SEED, College for Kids and Teens, and the Electa Quinney Institute for American Indian Education.

Click here to view images from the Alfred and Isabel Bader Legacy Luncheon.

“Whenever I have contemplated any achievement in my life, I have marveled how many and how diverse are the people who have made it possible.”
- Dr. Alfred Bader