Us Ogulnicks

The Ogulnick siblings, from oldest to youngest, are Pete, Annette, Hy, Joe, me, and Bob. I’ve shared that we lived in an apartment on the West Side of Chicago. It’s where I was born in 1926 and lived until after the service when I left Chicago for UCLA. But this is the story of my sister and four brothers.

Pete was bright, assertive, and a brilliant salesman. He was also high-strung and, although small in stature, willing to take on anyone and anything. He loved music, from Chicago Jazz to classical and opera. When he got his first job (For all of us, making a living was a driving force, not education), he brought some cash home for Ma and Pa and classical records. He was 17, and I was 7, but he insisted that I be with him when he played his records. I owe him much for gifting me a love for classical music at an early age, and it remains so to this day.  

Nine of us, including Pa’s mother, were living in a 3-bedroom, 1-bathroom apartment, which made for challenging times, and conflict arose frequently between Pete, Hy, and Joe. I was never involved but preferred peace between them. Ma did her best, but it was Annette that arranged temporary cease-fires between them. Conflict continued between them until Pete moved out.  

Pete began to work for a major insurance company and was one of their leading salespeople in the country. When the war started, he immediately volunteered but was turned down several times because he was blind without his glasses. Frustrated, he worked in a torpedo manufacturing plant during the war.

Pete and his wife Shirley had two children (Elyse and Ron) and lived a good middle-class life. Pete made a fine living; they had a nice home, traveled, and dined at the best restaurants. When Lenette and I needed money to buy/build Camp Shasta. Pete mortgaged his home for us.


Author: Sy Ogulnick

Sy Ogulnick received a BA from UCLA, Teacher’s Credential from Los Angeles Board of Education and completed phase I (Master’s portion) in a Doctor of Behavioral Science program at California Coast University. Sy leased and operated a summer day camp in LA. He and his wife then purchased virgin wilderness land in Northern CA, where they built and operated a coed summer camp. They moved to Las Vegas, NV, and purchased, built and operated a community children’s program for families staying in a major resort casino in Las Vegas. They have created programs for children nationwide that employed many people and in the process developed successful training programs for personnel. This led Sy to lecture on how to train staff and the creating of community within the workplace. Sy was then invited to speak at professional conferences on how best to hire and train employees, which led to his becoming a consultant in the art of improving relationships in a work environment and eventually to his epiphany that “Leaders are the primary problem and the answer to the personnel issues that arise in the workplace.” Sy has written numerous papers on the subject of interpersonal relationships, leadership and power. He has lectured throughout the United States, has been interviewed by the media and has appeared on many radio and TV talk shows

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *