Ellen Blanck Kulka, a prominent figure in the Jewish community and a distinguished legal professional, peacefully passed away on November 15th, 2023 at the age of 84. She was surrounded by her loved ones at Mt. Sinai Hospital in New York, NY. She is survived by her devoted daughter, Holly Kulka; son, Matthew Kulka; grandchildren, Ryan, Ari, and Isaac; son-in-law, Kevin Atteson and daughter-in-law, Lisa Kulka. She is now reunited with her loving late husband, Robert Kulka.
Ellen dedicated her life to making a meaningful impact in various spheres. Her legacy will endure through her numerous accomplishments and contributions; she was actively involved in charities including Music for All Seasons and the League of Women Voters, was a member for 40 years at Temple B'nai Abraham and served on the Board of Trustees, and served as President of the Board of Trustees at Jewish Family Services of New Jersey.
A graduate of Barnard College, Ellen went on to achieve academic excellence at Rutgers Law School, where she ranked first in her class during a time when few women pursued careers in law. Additionally, she earned a post graduate degree at NYU. Notably, she had the privilege of studying under the legendary Ruth Bader Ginsberg at Rutgers Law School and later taught alongside her as a professor at her alma mater.
Ellen had a distinguished career as a corporate lawyer and partner at Hannoch Weisman in New Jersey. She later served as the Northeast Regional Counsel of the Office of Thrift Supervision (OTS), followed by a significant role in Washington, D.C. as the General Counsel of the Resolution Trust Corporation (RTC), where she testified for several days in Congress during the Whitewater Investigations.
After her tenure with the RTC, Ellen returned to New Jersey as a partner at Kraemer Burns Mytelka Lovell & Kulka. Upon her retirement, she moved to New York City, where she embraced arts and culture, spending most days at her art studio with friends, enjoying the vibrant arts scene in New York, and traveling with friends and family.
The funeral service to celebrate Ellen's life will be held on Friday, November 17th, at 11:30 at Riverside Memorial Chapel, 180 West 76th Street, New York, NY. A small service will follow at B’nai Abraham Memorial Park in Union, New Jersey. Shiva will be observed at Holly’s apartment on the Upper West Side on Saturday from 5-8 pm and at Matthew’s house in Pennsylvania on Sunday from 5-8 pm.
Ellen’s artwork can be seen at ellenkulka.com.
The family requests donations in Ellen’s memory be made to the Anti-Defamation League or the League of Women Voters.
Ellen Blanck Kulka's indomitable spirit, dedication, and warmth will be deeply missed by all who knew her. May her memory be a blessing.