Memorable Manitobans: Sheldon “Obie” Oberman (1949-2004)
Educator, writer, storyteller.
Born at Winnipeg on 20 May 1949, son of Allan Oberman (1916-1995) and Dorothy “Dot Dobie” Stein (1925-2008), he attended St. John’s High School then studied literature at the University of Winnipeg and University of Jerusalem.
He returned to Winnipeg in 1973, received a teaching degree, and taught English and Drama at Joseph Wolinsky Collegiate for nearly 30 years. He began writing in the mid-1970s, eventually publishing twelve books: The Folk Festival Book: The Stories of the Winnipeg Folk Festival (1984), Mirror of a People: Canadian Jewish Experience in Poetry and Prose (1985), The Lion in the Lake (1988), Julie Gerond and the Polka Dot Pony (1988), TV Sal and the Game Show from Outer Space (1993), This Business with Elijah (1993), The Always Prayer Shawl (1994), The White Stone in the Castle Wall (1995), By the Hanukkah Light (1997), The Shaman’s Nephew: A Life in the Far North (1999), The Wisdom Bird: A Tale of Solomon and Sheba (2000), and The Island of the Minotaur (2003).
He acted and directed in film and stage plays and he toured North America as a storyteller. He wrote columns and freelance articles for the Winnipeg Free Press and published children’s songs, stories, and poems in magazines, journals, and anthologies.
He married Lee Anne Block (1952-2022) and they had two children before separating.
Obituary [Allan Oberman], Winnipeg Free Press, 8 October 1995, page 59.
Obituary, Winnipeg Free Press, 3 April 2004.
www.sheldonoberman.com, The Internet Archive.
“A passion for life, and others' lives,” Winnipeg Free Press, 13 August 2022, page C1.
This page was prepared by Gordon Goldsborough.
Page revised: 8 October 2023