Remembering Bernie’s son
To the editor:
I am delighted to know that Playground 3 is to be renamed for Bernie Rothenberg. As a resident of Stuyvesant Town, I have had the pleasure of meeting Mr. Rothenberg a few times. However, it is his son, Dr. Richard Rothenberg, whom I knew much better. This gives me an opportunity to describe my memory of Bernie’s son, Richard.
I taught music at Stuyvesant High School for 8 years (1983-1991) while Dr. Rothenberg was the Math Chairman (Assistant Principal for Math). When Richie heard that I had just moved to Stuyvesant Town in November 1986 with my wife Lisa (who was pregnant with our first son, Benjamin), he asked me what my new address was. “That’s right near my dad. I visit him for lunch every week. I’ll probably run into you a lot.”
Richie was an enormous influence on my growth as a teacher and supervisor. He knew that I had aspirations of becoming a chairman. When he noticed or heard from someone else something that I said or did that was not exemplary for an administrative leader, he would gently steer me in the right direction. When I was preparing for the NYC Board of Examiners Examination for Assistant Principal for Music, Dr. Rothenberg invited me to sit with him doing lesson observations of math teachers and then have discussions with me afterward as we analyzed the teacher’s performance.