Angel in Disguise
For most of her life, Scheiber was forced to do just that. Born in Brooklyn, she was raised primarily by her mother, Rose, a real estate broker, after her father had died prematurely. Scheiber started night school and went to work as a bookkeeper at 15, later entering Washington's National University (a forerunner of George Washington University) Law School. But rather than practice law after graduating in 1924, she stayed with the more secure auditor's job she had landed four years earlier with the IRS. Despite a stellar performance during the next 19 years, she was never promoted; Scheiber blamed the slight on the fact that she was a woman and a Jew. "The IRS treated her quite shabbily," says Clark. "She was very bitter."
Upon retiring in 1943, Scheiber decided to get even by getting rich. She returned to New York City and dedicated her life to playing the stock market. "She never tried to outguess the market," says William Fay, Scheiber's broker since the '70s. Her strategy: Invest in blue-chip companies and hold on. By the time she died, her initial $5,000 investment had increased 439,900 percent.
Clark delivered the gift to a stunned Dr. Norman Lamm, Yeshiva's president, in January. "Ms. Scheiber was a very unhappy woman whose only joy came from accumulating wealth," says Lamm, who will oversee the Anne Scheiber Scholarship and Loan Fund Awards. "Now in one fell swoop, she has managed to gain immortality."