Unstop­pable: The Incred­i­ble Jour­ney of Sig­gi B. Wilzig, the Auschwitz Sur­vivor who Over­came All Odds and Became a Wall Street Legend

September 1, 2020

Unstop­pable is the ulti­mate immi­grant sto­ry, an epic David-and-Goliath adven­ture and an inspir­ing man­u­al for sur­vival in the face of tremen­dous odds. As peo­ple emerge from the dev­as­ta­tion wrought by the glob­al COVID-19 pan­dem­ic, the true-life sto­ry of Sig­gi Wilzig offers a roadmap for re-invention.

While Amer­i­can teens were social­iz­ing in ice cream par­lors, Sig­gi was suf­fer­ing beat­ings by Nazi hood­lums for being a Jew and was soon deport­ed along with his fam­i­ly to Auschwitz. Sig­gi used his wits to stay alive, invent­ing skills the Nazis could exploit to run the camp. After two death march­es, near star­va­tion, he was lib­er­at­ed from Mau­thausen and went to work for the US Army hunt­ing Nazis, which earned him a visa to Amer­i­ca. He began his career sell­ing neck­ties from the trunk of his car, and in lit­tle more than a decade rose to become CEO of both a pub­licly trad­ed oil com­pa­ny and a bank with assets in excess of $4 billion.

Sig­gi’s sto­ry is a riv­et­ing nar­ra­tive of grit, cun­ning, luck, and the deter­mi­na­tion to live.

Discussion Questions

Joshua Greene’s Unstop­pable: Sig­gi B. Wilzig’s Aston­ish­ing Jour­ney from Auschwitz Sur­vivor and Pen­ni­less Immi­grant to Wall Street Leg­end is a heart­warm­ing sto­ry of a Holo­caust sur­vivor who became a suc­cess­ful busi­ness­man and phil­an­thropist in Amer­i­ca. Greene pulls no punch­es in describ­ing the chal­lenges Wilzig sur­vived in Europe, or those he over­came in Amer­i­ca, but he also shows how Wilzig’s relent­less dri­ve allowed him to per­se­vere and even­tu­al­ly thrive.