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Jewish Heritage: The Oral Histories - Cuba Family Archives

MEMOIRIST:                      CAROL NEMO


LOCATION:                        ATLANTA, GEORGIA

DATE:                                 SEPTEMBER 5, 2001

Transcript (PDF)


Carol (Breman) Nemo was born in 1938 and grew up in the Druid Hills area of metro Atlanta. Her father, M. William (Bill) Breman and mother, Sylvia [Goldstein] Breman, were well-known and active members of the city’s Jewish community. (The William Breman Jewish Heritage Museum was founded in large part by their generous contributions. Oral histories for both Bill and Sylvia can be found in the Cuba Family Archives).

She attended Ohio State University, where she met her husband, Bob Nemo. They settled in Atlanta and had three children, Sally, Dan, and Roberta. She and Bob have owned and operated multiple Smith Ace Hardware locations in the metro Atlanta area for over 25 years.

Carol’s religious upbringing was in the Temple, a Reform congregation and the city’s oldest and most diverse synagogue. She has been very active in the Jewish community for many years, focusing often on children’s education, and shelters for the homeless. One of her most rewarding experiences was establishing the Davis Academy, a Reform day school in the north metro area. She embraces her Jewish heritage and has studied with rabbis and scholars from diverse backgrounds including Orthodox, Conservative, Reform, and more.


Carol shares memories of her early educational experiences in Atlanta at the Druid Hills Grammar School, North Avenue Presbyterian School (NAPS), Northside High School, and The Westminster Schools. She talks of her time at Ohio State University, where she was active in Greek Life on campus and met her husband-to-be, Bob Nemo.

She speaks openly about her faith journey and how her renewed connection to Judaism has been so meaningful in her adult life. She describes her involvement in multiple projects including The Davis Academy, the National Reform Movement, The New Atlanta Jewish Community High School (NAJCHS), The Genesis Shelter, and the Temple’s Zaban Couples Center.

The interview also includes discussions of poignant topics including her motivation to found the Davis Academy, and her experience of losing a close friend in the 1962 Orly plane crash claiming the lives of prominent members of Atlanta’s arts community. Additionally, the second session of the interview takes place on the morning of September 11, 2001. Carol and interviewer Marvin Weintraub take time to process the tragedy as it is unfolding.

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