REinventing Excellence
Why I Give

Srebnick matriarch stirs support for financial aid

Howard Srebnick ’82, P’24, Scott Srebnick ’83, P’21 ’23 ’25 and Eliza Srebnick Weber ’87
A classic story of immigrants who helped build America has led to a generous endowment to support scholarships at Ransom Everglades. In the 1920s, Mariita Srebnick’s parents fled anti-Semitic violence in Eastern Europe, taking refuge in Cuba. There, her mother Sofia – a woman far ahead of her times – established and operated a thriving zipper factory, while her father Jaime was a successful toothpaste salesman.
In 1960, the Castro regime confiscated the zipper business. The family, virtually penniless, escaped Cuba to the United States, looking for work to make ends meet. In 1966, they pooled all of their savings and Mariita, her husband Saul and her parents opened a zipper factory in the Wynwood neighborhood of Miami. That small local business, Scott Notions, eventually grew to become a leading supplier of zippers for that most-American-brand-of-all: Levi Strauss.

Mariita worked long hours, often seven days a week, to build her business so that one day she could send her three children – Howard ’82, Scott ’83 and Eliza ’87 – to Ransom Everglades. Through her actions and personal sacrifice, she taught her children the value of education.

As a Founding Mentor of Women of Tomorrow, she also sought to instill in her children the importance of helping others and empowering young women to reach for the stars. Reflecting on their mother’s unwavering commitment to education and community service, the Srebnick children chose to honor her by endowing a full scholarship at Ransom Everglades – the Mariita Srebnick Scholarship – which supports the education of a deserving female upper school student.

“Until we became parents ourselves, we never fully appreciated how difficult it was for our mother, seemingly without effort and always with a positive attitude, to balance work, family and community service,” the children said jointly.

“We can’t think of a better way to honor this remarkable woman than to provide an opportunity for a young promising student to benefit from a Ransom Everglades education.”

– Srebnick siblings

Ransom Everglades provides more than $6 million each year for student financial support, yet less than 10 percent of those funds comes from permanently endowed scholarships. The Mariita Srebnick Scholarship helps build the school’s capacity to ensure that all promising students have access to an RE education regardless of financial circumstances. It is a great honor for RE to carry Mariita Srebnick’s name into the future, thanks to the Srebnick family’s generous support.

Coconut Grove, FL 33133
Middle School2045 South Bayshore DriveTel: 305-250-6850
Upper School3575 Main HighwayTel: 305-460-8800
Founded in 1903, Ransom Everglades School is a coeducational, college preparatory day school for grades 6 - 12 located on two campuses in Coconut Grove, Florida. Ransom Everglades School produces graduates who "believe that they are in the world not so much for what they can get out of it as for what they can put into it." The mission of Ransom Everglades School is to provide an educational environment in which the pursuit of honor, academic excellence and intellectual growth is complemented by concern for the physical, cultural and character development of each student. The school provides rigorous college preparation that promotes the student's sense of identity, community, personal integrity and values for a productive and satisfying life, and prepares the student to lead and to contribute to society.