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B'Yachad · 42 East 69th Street New York, NY 10021-5093 E-mail us at Address service requested

B’Yachad: The Newsletter of Jewish National Fund





Dear Reader,


This May, Israel celebrates 65 years of independence. Over the past six-and-a-half decades, this small desert nation has made incredible strides, both in the development of country and infrastructure, and in its contribution to the world. Innovation, spirit and wonder are just a few of the words that come to mind when describing Israel. We asked some of our Board Presidents across the country to share their thoughts on what Israel means to them (pages 16-17). Turn to pages 18-21 to see some of the ways in which Israel has progressed since the Jewish State was declared in May 1948 and read about the bravery and resourcefulness that Israelis have exhibited on their country’s journey to becoming the nation that it is today.

5 Project Spotlight on Arava Medical Center

A cornerstone laying ceremony marked the beginning of construction on the Danielle A. and Irving J. Grossman Arava Medical Center, which will benefit 3,700 local residents.

11 2012 National Conference in Orlando

JNF hosted its most successful National Conference to date in Orlando in October. Check out some of the highlights!

12-13 JNF’s Successful Emergency Campaign

We hope you enjoy this issue. Send your feedback to

JNF jumped into action to provide relief to communities affected by the conflict between Israel and Gaza in November. See how your donations made a difference.

Regards, B’Yachad Editorial Staff

16-21 Israel @ 65

Israel is celebrating 65 years of independence this May. Read about the ways that Israel, with the help of JNF, has grown into a thriving country with much to offer the world.


24 Students of All Faiths Discover Israel with JNF Twenty-five student leaders of all faiths traveled to Israel on the second annual Caravan for Democracy mission to see first-hand the distinctive and dynamic nature of its culture, politics, and community.

JEWISH NATIONAL FUND (JNF) began in 1901 as a dream and vision to reestablish a homeland in Israel

for Jewish people everywhere. Jews the world over collected coins in iconic JNF Blue Boxes, purchasing land and planting trees until ultimately, their dream of a Jewish homeland was a reality. Today, JNF continues to give all generations a unique voice in building and ensuring the prosperity of the land of Israel through their generosity and partnership with the people of Israel.




JNF embodies both heart and action; our work is varied in scope but singular in benefit. We strive to bring an enhanced quality of life to all of Israel’s residents, and translate these advancements to the world beyond. JNF is greening the desert with millions of trees, building thousands of parks, creating new communities and cities for generations of Israelis to call home, bolstering Israel’s water supply, helping develop innovative arid-agriculture techniques, and educating both young and old about the founding and importance of Israel and Zionism. JNF is a registered 501(c)(3) organization and United Nations NGO, which continuously earns top ratings from charity overseers. For more information on JNF, call 888.JNF.0099 or visit



MYWAS (Multi-Year Water Allocation System) is a national water management model designed to achieve the most efficient water resource management possible. It incorporates demands by different water users and information on water infrastructure systems and their costs. A joint project of the Hebrew University’s Faculty of Agriculture and Water Economics Project, a non-profit based at Harvard University, MYWAS will be completed within two years.



The Gomeh recycled water reservoir, currently under construction near Kiryat Shemona, will provide 530 million gallons of water each year to farms in northern Israel. The reservoir, which will be completed in two years, will be part of a comprehensive regional plan for water recycling.


These three deepwater drills in northern Israel have been completed, granting access to a unique groundwater resource that is expected to increase Israel’s annual water supply by more than 1%—the largest exploitation of natural underground water resources in the past decade.


This innovative system treats the base’s wastewater to a level that can be used for unrestricted irrigation by duplicating the biofiltration process of natural wetlands. It irrigates JNF’s Essence of Life Park on the base as well as neighboring farming communities.


Located in the northwest Negev, these two recycled water reservoirs have a combined capacity of more than 860 million gallons. They are linked by a piping system and together provide water to farming communities along Israel’s border with Gaza.


Since 2009, JNF has been operating the Rainwater Harvesting program in 23 schools throughout Israel, empowering more than 4,000 students to use resources responsibly. Four more schools are planned for 2013.


Located 15 miles northwest of Kiryat Gat in central Israel, this reservoir receives purified wastewater from the Jerusalem area. It has an annual storage capacity of 264 million gallons and irrigates 275 acres of almond groves in the Kibbutz Beit Guvrin region and additional farmlands. For more information on the JNF Parsons Water Fund, contact Pnina Dor at or 212.879.9305 x262.

I remember it like it was yesterday. There wasn’t much going on in 1948 in Avondale, a little suburb of Cincinnati, OH, especially for a 13-year-old like me. So a parade drew crowds, and I took a front seat for this one. And there she was, leading the parade. The most beautiful car I had ever seen. A big blue Buick convertible, driven by a well-known guy in town, with gleaming white-wall tires—so shiny I could see myself in them. As the car drove past, the announcer cited her virtues and it turns out the tires were from Israel. That was the moment I fell in love. Israel—this tiny new country with enemies on all sides—had been able to create something so awesome. I didn’t get to Israel for another decade but I never looked back after that parade. I was sold. Today, as President of Jewish National Fund, I get to Israel a lot. That plucky little country, still surrounded by enemies, has moved far beyond shiny tires but its 65th anniversary is really just the beginning. It’s unbelievable to see how far we’ve come in just over six decades; who knows where we’ll be in another six! When you look at the top 10 countries in the world in terms of agriculture, technology, medical breakthroughs and culture, Israel makes the list. Who would have thought 65 years ago that Israel would be a world leader? Well, we are and it’s because we perform. We see a need, and we fill it. We don’t wait for others, we lead. We defend when we need to but mostly we are builders because that’s what we believe in. Our might is backed by the creation of jobs and businesses, communities and tourism. We respond to immediate needs as they arise but focus on ensuring the future with our long-term vision. I am proud to say that the growth of Israel is directly linked to JNF. We are the can-do organization and when we take something on, we do it in a big way. Over the past 15 years, since our Chairman Ronald Lauder and our CEO Russell F. Robinson got involved, JNF has made the most tremendous strides in its work. Travel anywhere across the country and JNF’s impact is obvious and vast. It is a wonder to behold and to be part of, just like Israel itself. No excuse is ever needed for visiting Israel. It’s the Jewish homeland. But if ever there was a time to go, it is now. In the wake of the November conflict with Gaza, tourism has fallen off. Together with the Israel Ministry of Tourism, JNF launched Commit 2013 to encourage travel to Israel over the next year. It is truly one of the most powerful ways you can stand in solidarity with the people of Israel and show your support. Nothing beats experiencing Israel firsthand: the spirit of its people, the beauty of its land, where thousands of years of history and fascinating archaeological sites await you. Israel. It is a place different than any other, for nowhere else on earth can you feel the spiritual connection to a land, to being home. Plan a trip with your family, your synagogue, or take advantage of any one of JNF’s wonderful travel options. Just go. Send a message to the world that you stand with Israel. Sign up for Commit 2013 at or call JNF Travel & Tours at 877.563.8687.


Upgrades have begun on the water treatment center in Arara, a Bedouin municipality in the Negev. The plant will safely and effectively deal with the town’s wastewater as well as effluents from the nearby Nevatim Air Force Base. The IDF will pay Arara for the use of the recycling plant, providing an economic benefit to the impoverished community. Treated water will be stored in a JNF reservoir and allocated to farming communities in the area, and will also be used for a variety of water attractions in the Be’er Sheva River Park.

FROM O to 65


The main objective of this three-year project is to lay the foundation for effective stream restoration for 16 highly polluted trans-boundary streams. It is being supported by JNF, USAID and the European Union and operated by the Center for Trans-boundary Water Management at the Arava Institute for Environmental Studies. Restoration efforts will begin with the Hebron/Besor watershed, which is polluted with around 1.3 billion gallons of effluents from Palestinian communities in the West Bank each year as well as agricultural waste from Israeli communities. The project aims to focus scientific and stakeholders’ decision-making and public attention on trans-boundary pollution issues.





JNF enhances quality of life in Israel by building new communities and bolstering existing ones, especially in peripheral areas. With 90% of Israel’s population concentrated in less than 40% of the country, the northern and southern regions are largely uninhabited. JNF plays a major role in helping to develop new communities in these areas, giving families an alternative to Israel’s crowded and expensive center, and rejuvenating established towns with opportunities to combat unemployment and stagnant population growth.

GREEN INNOVATIONS As an innovator in ecological development and a pioneer in forest creation, JNF has planted more than 240 million trees in Israel, providing luscious belts of green covering more than 250,000 acres. JNF’s parks and forests are enjoyed by millions of people each weekend and holiday. Through agricultural infrastructure development, research, and soil conservation, JNF has been able to create and extend the presence of fertile land where there was once endless desert.



JNF has been at the forefront of water management and conservation in Israel for two decades, increasing the country’s total water supply by 12% and helping Israel become a world leader in water recycling. JNF’s network of over 250 recycled water reservoirs provide almost half of the water used for agriculture in Israel, saving enough freshwater to meet the needs of 4.4 million people a year.

RESEARCH & DEVELOPMENT BUT THESE ARE YOUR ROOTS IN THE HOLY LAND Plant a tree with your own hands at the Harvey Hertz-JNF Ceremonial Tree Planting Center at Neot Kedumim, the world’s only biblical landscape reserve. Sign up at Be part of the time-honored tradition of planting a tree to honor or memorialize a loved one. Plant trees for all occasions:

For over 100 years, JNF has sponsored research initiatives in Israel as part of its efforts to cultivate the land. Today, with history on its side, JNF is a world leader in both technological and environmental innovation. Working with distinguished academic and scientific institutions in Israel and abroad, JNF has supported innovative solutions in the areas of solar power, water sustainability, and agricultural development.

EDUCATION & ADVOCACY JNF is the single largest provider of Zionist engagement programs in the U.S. and offers myriad ways to connect young American Jews to Israel, from trips to Israel to B’nai Mitzvah projects and advocacy programs on college campuses. In addition, JNF supports leadership development and environmental education programs for Israeli youth.


Visit or call 800.542.TREE.

Israel is well-known for its ancient historical sites, but remnants of its rich modern history can also be found in every corner of the country. JNF is committed to the preservation of historical sites associated with Israel’s rebirth and to ensuring that the stories behind them are properly documented and retold for generations to come. Heritage site development enables JNF to share the past, the important events, the places, the struggles and the fight for Israel’s independence with Israelis and tourists alike.

Open an E-Z TreeTM account and save up to 50%. Visit for more information.


Birthdays • Holidays • Bar/Bat Mitzvahs Births • Weddings • Anniversaries • Memorials Retirement • Graduation • Housewarming

JNF is dedicated to ensuring that no member of Israeli society is left behind. Through a variety of initiatives, JNF provides cutting-edge rehabilitative services, special education, and medical care for people with special needs and makes its forests, parks, picnic areas, playgrounds, nature trails, and recreation facilities “inclusive” to visitors of all ability levels.

Arava Medical Center to Serve Needs of Thousands ON NOVEMBER 15, 2012, the cornerstone for


Dr. Alan Fischer of California—a major supporter of the medical center along with his wife, Dr. Barbara Sommer—traveled to Israel to attend the ceremony.


titles and activities make for quite an impressive resume. In 2012 alone, he visited Israel twice with JNF: on the Makor Mission and as chair of the Road to Jerusalem Mission. He serves as the National Major Gifts Chair, National Assistant Vice President of Community Relations, President of the Capital District Board of Albany, NY, and is an active lay leader in the Miami-Dade region in Florida during the winter. Ken has previously served as National Chair of Ammunition Hill. His passion for JNF and Israel is second to none and that is what makes him a Campaign All-Star. An Albany native, Ken became an integral part of the JNF family seven years ago through an initiative focused on developing donors and awareness in small communities, chaired by Dr. Melinda Wolf, JNF Vice President of Administration and National General Campaign Chair. Ever since, his commitment to JNF has been indispensable to the Ken Segel success of JNF’s mission. “Ken embodies leadership. He is very creative, curious and passionate,” shared Sharon Freedman, National Campaign Director. “He understands the importance of ‘making the ask.’ He has risen to

the National Board in such a short time because of his steadfast commitment.” Ken, a Principal of Schuyler Companies, a commercial real estate developer, has chaired two successful Tree of LifeTM dinners, founded the Capital District Board and served as its President since 2009. The Albany 5K Walk for Water, now in its third successful year, was his brainchild. And when it comes to JNF, it’s a family affair: Ken’s wife Nancie also serves on the Capital District Board and is a Sapphire Society member, and their two daughters Amie and Julie are JNFuture members. “Ken is the kind of lay leader that we dream of,” said Russell F. Robinson, CEO of JNF. “Mazal tov to my friend on this welldeserved honor.” Ken’s love for Israel began in 1970 as a student at Tel Aviv University, where he spent his junior year of college. In addition to his involvement with JNF, he is a past President of the United Jewish Federation of Northeastern New York and currently serves as Chairman of the Israel Bonds Cabinet for upstate New York. Congratulations to Ken Segel! n


well as those facing emergency situations. The medical center will also help in the development of the region by preventing elderly residents from moving away in search of adequate care, and attracting new residents by providing a more sustainable standard of living. “Laying the cornerstone for the center was extremely moving,” said Alon Badihi, Executive Director of JNF’s Israel office. “The money for this project was raised from people who came to Israel with the goal of learning what is needed and doing something about it. Through their donations they are helping ensure quality of life for those living in the Arava.” n

2012 was an exceptional year for JNF. It marked the most successful campaign in our organization’s history, raising an impressive $73 million. I’m so proud of what we have been able to accomplish this year. And we couldn’t have reached this milestone without you, the donors. Each and every one of you has your personal connection to the land and people of Israel. I remember my first trip to Israel, as a teenager on a Cleveland youth group mission. It was my first visit to a foreign country, my first time seeing the country that I had learned about over the years. I walked through JNF forests and recalled buying trees in Hebrew school for $2. I felt instantly that this was my homeland. Fast forward to 2000: my first JNF mission. On that mission, I saw much more than trees. I saw what JNF is about: a vision to develop the whole country. What stood out the most for me was the crystal clear role that JNF plays in improving the quality of life for all Israelis, making Israel a first-rate nation. Everywhere you go in Israel, there are people who will light up at the mention of JNF. I’ve talked with so many Israeli farmers who have told me how much they appreciate JNF, how their success is a direct result of what JNF has done with water and research and development. Since 2000, I’ve been on many JNF missions, often with new and prospective donors. I always enjoy showing them the great work that JNF does and seeing how amazed and impressed they are. All it takes is seeing JNF’s work firsthand to truly connect to the vision that JNF has shaped over its 111-year history. But it’s not about how much we’ve raised; it’s what those dollars do in Israel. With your support, JNF made a tangible difference in the lives of the people of Israel in 2012. The Be’er Sheva River Park is changing the face of the city and development and construction is progressing rapidly on the 12,000-seat amphitheatre, 23-acre man-made lake, and other park attractions. JNF’s Blueprint Negev campaign is improving the quality of life for the region’s residents and encouraging a population shift to the south. During the Gaza conflict, you raised $1.2 million in emergency relief funds during the course of one week to give more than 15,000 residents from southern Israel opportunities to relax, escape the chaos and brave the conflict. And in the U.S., we launched our Positively Israel campaign to change the conversation about Israel and showcase its many contributions to the world. This is just a fraction of what we were able to accomplish together over the past year. Let’s make 2013 even more successful as we work towards our goal of a $100 million campaign.


the long-awaited medical facility in the Central Arava was laid in a ceremony attended by local dignitaries, residents of the region, and medical staff. The Central Arava is comprised of seven communities scattered between the Dead Sea and Red Sea along Israel’s Jordanian border. The remote location and limited services have inhibited the development of this underpopulated desert region; one of the main problems is a lack of adequate medical resources. Now, thanks to JNF, a new state-of-the-art medical center is being built to provide 24-hour services to the region. “The residents of the periphery deserve to have a respectable medical clinic,” said Ezra Ravins, former mayor of the Central Arava, following the ceremony. “We’ve been waiting for this for a long time.” Located in the town of Sapir, the Danielle A. and Irving J. Grossman Arava Medical Center will serve the needs of the 3,700 local residents who until now have had to travel 80 miles to Be’er Sheva or Eilat for proper medical attention. This will be a huge relief, especially for residents who have to make several trips a week to receive treatment for chronic ailments, as














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(L-R) David Eisenberg, Team JNF captain, JNF Board member and Israel Ride Vice Chair; Larry Cohen, New England President; Arava Institute founder Dr. Alon Tal; and Michael Lederman, JNF National Treasurer and Rhode Island President on the Arava Institute Hazon Israel Ride.

1 (L-R) JNF Executive Forum Co-Chairs Todd Starr and Jill Lerner, Atlanta Co-

1 (L-R) Consul General Ido Aharoni with event Co-Chairs Barak Lurie and Doug


Executive Board member Steve London, his wife Paula and friends toured JNF projects while in Israel for Hadassah’s 100th anniversary celebration. (L-R) Jay and Linda Shuman, Russ and Roz Kraiterman, and Paula and Steve London.


Williams at the sixth annual JNF breakfast at the Beverly Hilton Hotel in Los Angeles.

2 (L-R) Roni Wolk and Sharon Levison at JNF’s sponsorship table at the Atlanta Book 2 (L-R) JNF Leadership Development Program participants Lisa Elkan, Dean Solomon, Festival.

Michelle Jackson, Daren Schlecter, JNFuture Chair Eric Adler, Campaign Executive Carly Vazana, Adam Bar, Sam Robinson, and Don Melamed at the final event of the year, where they were honored for their hard work and dedication.

3 (L-R) David Birnbrey, Paul Freeman, Kenny Goldberg and Eddie Birnbrey enjoyed the Sam P. Alterman Golf Tournament in Atlanta. New Englanders at the 2012 National Conference in Orlando. (L-R) Director Sara 3 (L-R) Women for Israel Campaign Chair Alyse Golden Berkley, Faith Hefez; Isaac Edry; New England Board member Lee Aronson; Risa Aronson; Zone Golden, Judy Zweig, Myrtle Sitowitz, Jackie Burdorf, KKL Board Member Shlomi 4 (L-R) Monica Yaniv, JNF CEO Russell Robinson, JNF Emissary to the Southwest President Larry Cohen; Adam Cohen; Dr. Alon Tal; New England Board member Vayzer, Carole Bolotin, and Claudia Stone-Mosher gathered together for a Sapphire Ron Bernstein, Zvi Yaniv, and JNF Southwest Director Julie Malin joined together Jonathan Plaut; Amy Parsons, Vice President of the JNF Parsons Water Fund; Vice to bring information on Abraham’s Well Visitor Center to Austin at an event hosted Society appreciation brunch hosted by Carole Bolotin. President of Campaign Todd Patkin; National Campaign Director Sharon Freedman; by the Yanivs. and President Emeritus Robert Cohan.

5 (L-R) Marni Bloch, Chris Bronk, Jennifer Joy-Bronk, and Aimee Goldman came out (L-R) Green Horizons National Chair and President Emeritus Ronald Lubin; Lawyers to support JNF at a Houston event about security programs in Israel. for Israel Society member Frank Segall; keynote speaker Major General (Res.) Uzi Dayan, Chairman of Green Horizons; and Lawyers for Israel Society member Gil 6 (L-R) Brian Deitch, JNFuture National Board member David Levy, and JNF Emissary Breiman at a breakfast at Burns & Levinson hosted by Segall and Lubin. to the Southwest Ron Bernstein in Austin at the JNFuture mini golf night supporting JNF’s emergency relief campaign. (Picture by Ginny B Photography) 5 (L-R) New England Board President Emeritus and event Co-Chair Robert Cohan; New England Executive Board member and event Co-Chair Steve London; guest speaker Shai Bazak, Consul General of Israel to New England; featured speaker Chuck Fax, JNF Vice President of Israel Action; and New England Board member and event Co-Chair Rick Noone at the New England Positively Israel breakfast.


President, with JNF Chairman Ronald Lauder at the 2012 National Conference in Orlando.






















FLORIDA 1. (L-R) Miami-Dade Board members Roy Esh and Zev Steinmetz, JNFuture National President, at the Miami-Dade Campaign Kick-Off event. 2. (L-R) Miami-Dade Board member Robert Werner and Florence Werner at the Miami-Dade opening board meeting. 3. (L-R) Glen D. Schwartz, Florida Executive Director; Chaim Shacham, Consul General of Israel to Florida and Puerto Rico; Ron Kriss, Miami-Dade Board President; and Robert Swire, Southern Florida Campaign Executive at the Miami-Dade opening board meeting. 4. (L-R) JNF volunteer Kathleen Loucks; Gideon Shavit, CEO of the Alexander Muss High School in Israel (AMHSI); Greg Loucks; Dr. Dayan Sandler; and Dr. Jeffrey Sandler, Jacksonville Doctors for Israel Society Chairman, at an AMHSI event hosted by Drs. Dayan and Jeffrey Sandler. 5. (L-R) Anthony Solomon, JNF Naples Board Co-President; Steven Braverman; David Braverman, JNF Naples Board Co-President; and Rabbi Adam Miller at a meeting in Naples. 6. (Clockwise from left) Rabbi Adam Miller; Uri Smajovits, Northern Florida Regional Director; Gerry Kumin; Myra Janco Daniels, 2013 Naples Tree of Life™ honoree; Irv Berzon; Jay Kaye; Meryl Koch Nay; and Hank Greenberg, Naples Board member and previous Tree of Life™ honoree at the Tree of Life™ award dinner committee meeting.

7. (L-R) Susan Waksman and Tampa Board Co-President Betsy Marcadis at a Sapphire Society event hosted by Susan.


18 14 (L-R) Gary Beren, JNF Palm Beach Board President Art Silber, and Nancy Beren at a parlor meeting at the Beren home in BallenIsles in Palm Beach Gardens.

8 (L-R) Orlando Board members Barney Chepanik; Harvey Kobrin; Debbie Meitin; Dr. 15 (L-R) Yael Septee Kane, JNF Chief Leadership Development Officer; Art Shari Yudenfreund-Sujka; Archie Ossin; Justin Presser, JNFuture member; Karmit Arbel-Rumbak, JNF-Green Horizons liaison; Aaron Gorovitz; and Bruce Gould, National Vice-President of Regions at a breakfast hosted by Gorovitz.

Silber, JNF Palm Beach Board President; and Lynn Silber at the 2012 JNF National Conference in Orlando.

16 (L-R) Debbie Regent, JNF Campaign Executive; Mort Fishman, JNF Palm Beach 9 Karmit Arbel-Rumbak, JNF-Green Horizons liaison, was the guest speaker at a JNF Board member and Major Gifts Chair; Dr. Joel Spalter; Dr. Irene Spalter; guest

speaker Iris Kowen, Aleh Negev; Claire Pickman; Dr. Bruce Wolf; Rabbi Donald Tampa Board meeting. (L-R) JNFuture member Jillian Brandes, David Pearlman, Northern Florida Regional Director Uri Smajovits, intern Daniel Klein, Byron Kolitz, Crain; Sandra Crain, JNF South Palm Beach Board member; and Robbie Puritz Hayes, JNF Campaign Executive, at a breakfast meeting in Boca Raton. Karmit Arbel-Rumbak, and meeting host Jeffrey Gad.

10 (L-R) Aaron Gorovitz, Tampa Board Co-President Betsy Marcadis, and Dr. Abe

Marcadis at the major donor dessert reception during the National Conference.

11 (L-R) Elisa Frankel, Dr. Sharon Gilbert, Rocco Randazzo, and Mavis Rothman at the Negev Nights Gala during the 2012 JNF National Conference in Orlando.

17. (L-R) Cantor Elaine Shapiro, JNF South Palm Beach Board member and Israel

Advocacy and Education Chair; event hostess Shelly Gross; guest speaker Noa Zer, Director of Resource Development and Foreign Affairs for the Central Arava Regional Council; Debbie Firestone; and Carole Cornell during a parlor meeting in Shelly’s Boca Raton home.

12 (L-R) Alan Cohn, Chair of the Lawyers for Israel Society in Broward, and Scott and 18. (L-R) Michael Zimmerman, Ari Zimmerman, Orli Zimmerman and Miami-Dade Andrea Brenner at the Negev Nights Gala at the National Conference.

13 (L-R) Becky Cohen, Iris Assouline, Stacy Boegem, Dara Ogulnick, Rachel Ross and Lauren Geduld at a Moms for Israel parlor meeting.

Board member Josh Berkowitz at the 2012 JNF National Conference in Orlando.











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WESTERN 1. (L-R) Min Kataczinsky with Russ and Brenda Frank at JNF’s annual Sunday brunch in Las Vegas. 2. (L-R) Carol and Gary Mayer at JNF’s annual Sunday brunch in Las Vegas. 3. Event Chair and Las Vegas Board member Adi Mor at the annual Sunday

brunch in Las Vegas.

7. (L-R) Phoenix Suns President and owner Robert Sarver, Arizona Board

member Seymour Rife, and former Suns player Joel Kramer at JNF Draft Night in Phoenix.

8. (L-R) Arizona Board member Rabbi Micah Caplan, Phoenix Suns President

and owner Robert Sarver, Sharona Feller, and JNF Arizona Director Ted Kort lit Chanukah candles at JNF Draft Night in Phoenix.

4. (L-R) Lee Kay and Byron and Starr Kolitz planted trees in Be’er Sheva during 9. (L-R) New Arizona Board members Mim Bottner, Judi Gottschalk, Steven

JNF’s Discover Israel mission.

5. (L-R) The Lang Family—Gene Jr., Rose, Gene Sr. and Claire—planted trees in Be’er Sheva during JNF’s Discover Israel mission.

10.(L-R) San Diego Board member David Bramzon, JNF National Campaign

6. (L-R) Mary Lee Mohr and Denver Advisory Board member Marty Mohr enjoyed a laugh with residents of Safed during JNF’s Discover Israel mission.

Rosenfield, Jay Spector, and Rory J. Albert were welcomed at a JNF Arizona Board breakfast in Phoenix.

Director Diane Scar, San Diego Board President Myra Chack Fleischer, and San Diego Board member Bill Miller received trees in Israel for chairing the San Diego Love of Israel brunch at San Diego’s donor appreciation event.

11. (L-R) San Diego Board members Mimi Gross, John Milikowsky, and Nadya Spivack at a donor appreciation event hosted by Bill and Kim Miller.

12. (L-R) Joshua Feder, JNF National Campaign Director Diane Scar, and Caron Feder at JNF San Diego’s donor appreciation event hosted by Bill and Kim Miller.

13. (L-R) Peter and Helen Loewenstein hosted a wine and cheese event at

their home in Pleasant Hill, CA to benefit the Central Arava Medical Center and honor Peter’s parents, Drs. Edith and George Loewenstein.

14. Noa Zer, Director of Resource Development for the Central Arava Regional

Council; Aaron Parker, Northern California and Pacific Northwest Regional Director; and Marlene Maier, Northern California and Pacific Northwest Regional President presented JNF’s work to children and teachers at Kol Emeth Conservative Synagogue in Palo Alto. The synagogue is raising $50,000 for the Central Arava Medical Center.










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MID-ATLANTIC 1. (L-R) Maryland Zone Chairman Andy Klein, Michael Renbaum,

Executive Vice President of Baseball Operations for the Baltimore Orioles Dan Duquette, and Lowell Glazer at a successful event supporting JNF’s Project: Baseball at Camden Yards.

Jayne Klein, Debbie Spector, Suzie Tiplitz, Amy Gur, and Brett Tiplitz.

3. (L-R) Eli Groner, Minister of Economic Affairs for the Israeli

Embassy in Washington, D.C., congratulated Frank Spector, newly installed Maryland President, and outgoing Maryland President Jonathan Fishman after he spoke at the installation event.

4. (L-R) D.C. Kampelman Society Co-Chair Gary Kushner and

Maryland President Frank Spector at a parlor meeting in D.C.

5. (L-R) Outgoing Maryland President Jonathan Fishman

received a signed vintage JNF poster from Mid-Atlantic Zone President Baruch Fellner at the home of Frank Spector.



MIDWEST 6. (L-R) Russ Silberglied, Delaware President Joel Friedlander, David Margules, Bob Pincus, and Dr. Barry Kayne at a board meeting in Delaware. 7. (L-R) Manya Luft and her son Yaakov proudly

displayed the plaque given to them by JNF for planting a grove of trees in Israel last summer.

2. (L-R) Newly installed Baltimore Board members Nanci Seff,


8. (L-R) Martin Greenberg and son Allan Greenberg

displayed Martin’s plaque on the Wall of Honor at Ammunition Hill commemorating his service in the United States Army.

9. (L-R) D.C. Regional Director Stuart Diamant-Cohen

and Lawyers for Israel (LFI) Society member Marsha Liss at a LFI event.

10.(L-R) Dr. Ellen Taylor and Gary Kushner at a MidAtlantic major donor thank you event.

11.JNF-Green Horizons liaison Karmit Arbel celebrated

Chanukah with Paul Frommer during her visit to the U.S.

1. (L-R) Master of Ceremonies and actor Paul Reiser with event Co-Chairs Janet and Gadi Cohen at the Chicago Tree of Life™ award dinner.

2. Chicago board members Scott Schreiber and Lori Rubin

Dekalo with Steve Linde (center), Editor-in-Chief of The Jerusalem Post, at the 2012 National Conference in Orlando.

3. Scott Levy and Tracy Treger at the Chicago Board boat party. 4. (L-R) Presenters Bill Strubbe of William B. Strubbe LLC,

Tom Cuni of Cuni, Ferguson & LeVay Co., LPA, and Todd Bailey of Frost Brown Todd at the second annual JNF/ Judge Carl B. Rubin Legal Society CLE training in Cincinnati.

5. (L-R) Paul Staadeker, Planned Giving Co-Chair; Chief

Planned Giving Officer Matt Bernstein; Herb Solomon; Scott Solomon; and Ron Solomon, Southern Ohio and Kentucky President and Planned Giving Co-Chair, at a planned giving event sponsored by Creekside at the Village in Columbus.

6. (L-R) Ron Solomon, President of JNF Southern Ohio and

Kentucky; Barb Solomon; Tom Schiffer; and JNF Board member Karen Schiffer at the 2012 National Conference in Orlando. 7. (L-R) Event Co-Chairs Joni and Steve Wasserman enjoyed the 2012 Cleveland Tree of Life™ award dinner. 8. (L-R) Cleveland Tree of Life™ award dinner Co-Chairs Rabbi Yehuda and Chana Appel and Kyla Schneider.

9. (L-R) Mark and Aviv Sack and Cindy and Jerry Aizen at the 2012 Cleveland Tree of Life™ award dinner.

10. (L-R) Michael Anderson and Rabbi Avi Olitzky of

Beth El Synagogue in St. Louis Park, MN in front of a recently restored stained glass window from the synagogue’s original building that features a JNF Blue Box.

11. The event committee at the Detroit Doctors for Israel

Society dinner. (L-R) Murray Levin, David Margules, Shirley Levin, Dorothy Superstine Sandberg, Dr. Hamid Banooni, Dr. Leora Bar-Levav, Doreen Hermelin, National DFI Co-Chair Dr. Hershel Sandberg, honoree Dr. Mel Lester, Dr. Irv Gastman, Edi Gastman, Dr. Marc Brodsky, Dr. Susan Brodsky, Dr. Josh Berris, and Dr. Karen Berris.

12. (L-R) Rabbi Joseph Krakoff of Congregation

Shaarey Zedek and Board President Dr. Leora Bar-Levav at the first-ever Doctors for Israel Society dinner in Detroit.

13. The 2012 Wisconsin tribute banquet committee

members (L-R seated) Barbara Shafton, Lorraine Mitz, Linda Silberman, (L-R standing) Robin Zaks, Banquet Co-Chairs Susan and Joel Pittelman, Barbara Simon, and Dr. Neena Florsheim.

14. The Wisconsin annual tribute banquet honored 11

community activists. (L-R seated) Reva Reitman Schlonsky, Nancy Plotkin, Rabbi Shari Shamah, Mina Tepper, and Geri Berg. (L-R standing) Shannon Corallo, Andrew Komisar, Neal Plotkin, Dr. Corey Shamah, Jerry Tepper, and Marissa Steinhofer.

15. JNFuture in Wisconsin held a cocktail reception at the home of Randi and Eric Schachter. (L-R) Sarah Minkin; Bradley Komisar; Seth Wenig; Yedidya Harush, JNF-Halutza liaison; Randi Schachter; Eric Schachter; and Benjamin Jablonski.




















10 5





1 (L-R) Donna Butler, Central New Jersey Board member

Aaron Tucker, Beth Korn, and Central New Jersey Board member Joe Korn at a major donor thank you reception.

2 (L-R) Marci Robinson and Jody Leibowitz at a major donor thank you reception.

3 (L-R) JNF Chief Executive Officer Russell F. Robinson and

5 (L-R) Philadelphia Board President David Dinenberg,

Long Island Board members gathered at the first annual Long Island breakfast. (L-R) Rubin Pikus, Arnold Waldman, JNF Associate Executive Director of Long Island Howard Ingram, Lea Ruskin, Neal Berman, JNF Executive Director of Greater New York Michael Feinman, Steve Hazelkorn, Alan Chalup, Long Island Board President Michael Kessler, Ariel Grunberg, Sharon Pikus, Herb Ash, Mark Engel, Richard Glosman, Larry Ingber, and Charles Skop.


(L-R) Selma Halperin, honoree Ira Halperin and Judy Halperin at the Long Island Tree of LifeTM dinner.


(L-R) Honoree James Slattery, Long Island Board members Mark Engel and Rubin Pikus and honoree Jeffrey Solomon at the Long Island Golf and Tennis Classic.

6 (L-R) Robert Levin, Marcy Levin, Samantha Levin,

Central New Jersey Board President Mark Rattner at a major donor thank you reception.

Andrew Levin, Michele Levin, and Jake Levin with the children of Moshav Maor at the dedication of the Alvin M. Levin Field.

4 (L-R) Max Dinenberg, Ben Dinenberg, Micky Black, and

7 Jameson Fischer posed in a fire truck donated in

David Dinenberg at the Philadelphia Board installation, where David was installed as President.


Eastern PA Regional Director Marina Furman, Iron Chef Jose Garces, immediate past Board President Richard Cohen, and Robert Zuritsky at the Philadelphia Board installation.

honor of his bar mitzvah during the President’s Society mission to Israel.


(L-R) Dr. Ivy Engel, guest speaker Dr. Harry Ostrer, and Sheryl Buchholtz at a Doctors for Israel Society lecture on the genetic history of the Jewish people at JNF House in New York City.


(L-R) JNFuture Chair Adam Belfer, JNFuture Events Chair Jessica Levine, and New York Board member Asaf Palgi at JNFuture’s 6th annual Garden of Eden.


(L-R) JNFuture Chair Ben Levine and JNFuture Israel Advocacy Chair Ilana Derman at JNFuture’s 6th annual Garden of Eden.


(L-R) Dr. Richard Lieblich, honoree Dr. Carolyn Lieblich, and Mollie Lieblich at a Northern New Jersey reception.


(L-R) JNF Executive Director of Greater New York Michael Feinman, Marci Robinson, Melissa Seigel, Brad Seigel, actor Mandy Patinkin, former Westchester Board President Larry Frankel, JNF Director of Women’s Campaign for Israel and Special Campaigns Elisa Frankel, Sheila Scharfman, and Charlie Scharfman at a parlor meeting in Manhattan to support the Arava Institute.


(L-R) Carolyn Shapiro, Northern New Jersey Board member Jill Janowski, and honoree Dr. Mark Shapiro at a Northern New Jersey reception.

10 (L-R) Northern New Jersey Board President Ben Gutmann, Susan

Gutmann, and Jackie Kates at the annual Teaneck reception.


(L-R) Northern New Jersey Board members and event chairs Bob and Helen Levine, honorees Terry and Gail Novetsky, Guardian of Israel award recipient Dr. Jacqueline Brunetti, honorees Beth and Dr. Harvey Gross, Northern New Jersey Board members and event chairs Janice and Jerry Rosen, and Northern New Jersey Director Jocelyn Inglis at the Northern New Jersey Teaneck reception.


(L-R) JNF Senior Area Director of Israel Advocacy and Education Nina Woldin, Assistant Executive Director of the Westchester Jewish Council Nancy K. Zaro, JNF CEO Russell F. Robinson, JCC of Harrison Rabbi Aubrey Glazer, former Westchester Board President Larry Frankel, JNF Director of Westchester and Southern Connecticut Stephanie Risa Balkin, and Executive Director of the Westchester Jewish Council Elliot Forchheimer at a JNF Lunch & Learn for rabbis of Westchester and Connecticut.

ional Fund

Jewish Nat


JNF 2012 National Conference October 21-22




2013 JNF Save the Date National Conference

October 27-28, 2013

Grand Hyatt Denver, Downtown

Denver, Colorado

JNF Emergency Relief RESPITE AT THE SDEROT REC CENTER JNF’s Sderot Indoor Recreation Center served as a safe haven in one of the most heavily targeted areas of Israel, welcoming hundreds of children and parents each day. Three hundred IDF soldiers were also treated to rest, games, relaxation and home-cooked meals.



“The indoor playground is a lifeline for us. It gives the children a chance to be normal and has changed the way this city behaves and feels. It is the best thing that has happened to us.” — Sderot Mayor David Bouskila


JNF arranged for thousands of Israelis to enjoy free admission to Anava Park in Modiin and Keftzuba outside of Jerusalem. Transportation and food were provided, also free of charge. JNF also hosted a movie for 300 children in its Jerusalem office building, with help from girls from a neighboring seminary. Together with the Society for Preservation of Israel Heritage Sites (SPIHS), JNF opened more than 50 historical sites for 5,000 residents of the Negev, including the Ayalon Institute and Atlit, and arranged special tours and activities at the Neot Kedumim biblical reserve, Ammunition Hill in Jerusalem, and Timna Park near Eilat. HELPING PEOPLE WITH SPECIAL NEEDS The staff at Aleh Negev rehabilitative village worked tirelessly to maintain regular routines for the residents amidst constant sirens. Eleven Sherut Leumi (National Service) girls stayed over at Aleh Negev to help keep the residents calm. Residents spent the nights in reinforced shelters and were kept indoors during the daytime. JNF helped LOTEM, an organization that makes nature accessible to people with special needs, organize several amazing activities for residents of southern Israel. LOTEM staff guided outings for groups of children, adolescents, and adults with special education backgrounds, disadvantaged youth, and women from a battered women’s shelter.

For more funding opportunities, call 888.JNF.0099.

“Air raid sirens add anxiety and pressure to any situation. In this case these youth already lead traumatized lives. The activities that JNF provided were amazing and really helped alleviate some of the stress.” —Amos Ziv, LOTEM founder and director

Bnai Zedek Firetrucks po#949736


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Jewish National Fund Jewish National Fund and and Friends of Israel Friends of Israel Fire Fighters Fire Fighters thank thank CongregationCongregation B’nai Tzedek B’nai Tzedek

Within hours of the escalation between Gaza and Israel in November 2012, JNF jumped into action to provide relief to communities across Israel, raising more than $1.2 million through an emergency campaign. With wonderful staff in Israel and committed partner organizations, those dollars enabled us to give more than 15,000 residents from the south opportunities to relax, escape the chaos and brave the conflict. Thank you for your passion and commitment to JNF and Israel. Thank you for making JNF Your Voice in Israel.

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“Those three days made a change I couldn’t accomplish in a yearlong process with these welfare families.” – Social worker from Kiryat Malachi


JNF worked with its partners, Green Horizons, Shorashim and Alexander Muss High School in Israel (AMHSI), to bring 200 children and their families from Sderot, Kiryat Malachi, Be’er Sheva, Gan Yavne and the Eshkol region to spend three days enjoying outdoor activities in Jerusalem. Groups also visited Neot Kedumim, Ayalon Institute, City of David Visitor’s Center, and The Israel Museum, and nearly 100 children slept at a camp in Mitzpe Ramon.

PROVIDING FOR ISRAEL’S FIRST RESPONDERS JNF purchased toiletries and food for the 250 firefighters in southern Israel who worked around the clock to save lives as well as for their 750 children. JNF has helped purchase 10 state-of-the-art fire trucks for the southern region that were the first to respond to the rocket attacks during the conflict. FINDING REFUGE IN THE CENTRAL ARAVA

for donating a fire truck forforests donating a fire truck to protect Israel’s

The Central Arava, situated relatively far from the fire zone, took in families living in rocket range. With the help of JNF and the Jewish Agency, families were adopted by local Arava families. The Central Arava children—led by the Regional Council, the Arava community center and youth groups and educational movements like Central Arava R&D, Lotan’s Way and the cadets of the Arava pre-army program—partnered to host and entertain more than 180 children from affected areas. In addition, 70 students from Haogen community boarding school for youth at risk spent a FORESTRY • WATER • COMMUNITY DEVELOPMENT • SECURITY day partaking in educational fun activities. EDUCATION • and RESEARCH • TOURISM & RECREATION • ECOLOGY

to protect Israel’s forests

For more funding opportunities, call 888.JNF.0099.


CREATE A LASTING LEGACY charitable gift annuities charitable remainder trusts charitable lead trusts life insurance endowments donor advised funds bequests

are reserved for a select group of people who have demonstrated an enduring commitment to Israel and JNF. Society members receive exclusive privileges and services.

Membership benefits include:

• Name recognition in the Book of Life, on permanent display at JNF headquarters in NY • A custom-designed Gould Legacy Society pin • Invitations to special events and lectures • A limited edition JNF Blue Box designed by Tiffany & Co. (for legacy gifts of $50,000 and above) • Recognition in Israel

To learn more contact one of our Planned Giving Specialists at 800.562.7526 or

Join us today and help build a prosperous future for the land of Israel and its people. Contact Yael Septee Kane at or 212.879.9305 x220 for more information.

Three Consecutive JNF Missions for Phil Waldman THIS MAY BE ONE FOR THE GUINNESS BOOK

of World Records. This winter Phil Waldman of Orange County, CA traveled to Israel on three consecutive JNF missions: the Birdwatching and Nature Photography Mission (February 12-21), the Makor Mission (February 22-March 1), and the Culinary, Wine and Arts Mission (March 1-9), for a total of three and a half weeks. He even co-chaired the birdwatching mission. Phil recognizes that this is a bit out of the ordinary, but the itineraries intrigued him and the dates just worked out well. “The birding mission was scheduled for mid-February,” he said. “The Makor mission is always at the same time of year and to participate in Makor, you must go to Israel on the mission. And then I heard about the culinary mission and thought, ‘Why not stay for that one too?’” Phil became involved with JNF when he read about JNF’s first birdwatching mission in 2009. Since he’d been taking classes in birding for a few years, he thought it would be a good reason to go back to Israel, but also see it in a new way. “I knew a bit about JNF and how they planted trees, but after I went on the mission, I realized what a great organization it is,” he said. “On that first birding mission, we didn’t actually get to see a lot of birds because of a sandstorm in the Sahara. But I got to see a lot of the country.”

This winter was the first time that Phil spent more than two weeks at a time in Israel. “I enjoy being in Israel; to me, it’s a very special place,” he said. “I always feel like I’m coming home. It’s great to visit the land of my forefathers and just to be there. “What I’ve really enjoyed about going on the JNF missions is that you’re with some really outstanding Zionists who put Israel first in their hearts and minds. What it’s like to be in Israel is really something you can’t easily put into words.” Phil looks forward to seeing the progress of the Be’er Sheva River Park on his trips to Israel. When they visited on the first birding mission, it was nothing to look at. “Last year, when we returned, you could see where a huge change had taken place. On both sides of the river bank, the river bed had been cleaned up.” Born and raised in Las Vegas, Phil moved to California 30 years ago. Since he retired eight years ago, he has spent more time focusing on Jewish philanthropy.

“Even before then, I was very involved,” he said. “At one time I was on four different boards. I keep finding more things to do in the Jewish world.” Phil usually travels to Israel three times a year, mainly on missions but sometimes just by himself. He doesn’t have any family there and he doesn’t speak Hebrew. He simply enjoys being there. “I encourage people all the time to visit Israel,” he said. “When they tell me that it seems so dangerous, I say, ‘You

What I’ve really enjoyed

about going on the JNF missions is that you’re with some really



• • • • • • •


outstanding Zionists who put Israel first in their hearts and minds.

could go down to South Central LA, downtown Detroit, downtown Baltimore…and you’d be safer in Israel.’ I’ve never gone to Israel and had any qualms about being there. It’s the place to be as a Jew.” n To learn more about JNF’s tours and missions, visit or contact 877.JNF.TOUR (563.8687).

Dr. Mel Lester Honored by JNF’s Doctors for Israel Society A month after the dinner, Dr. Lester traveled to Israel and visited the site of the future medical center with his fianceé Doreen Hermelin. “This new medical facility is going to be built to care for Israelis in the desert,” he said. “If you live down there,

University of Michigan, a year later to help the university establish a new concept of how to care for people with heart and circulatory diseases, based on his papers on the subject. He helped raise $25 million to establish a

I really became attached to what Israel is all about.

you must drive two hours either to Eilat or Be’er Sheva for medical care. Now you won’t have to leave at all. This will help current residents and attract new ones.” Board certified in internal medicine and specializing in vascular diseases, Dr. Lester retired in 2004, a year after his wife passed away. He returned to his alma mater, the

To join JNF’s Doctors for Israel Society and connect with like-minded professionals, participate in national webinars addressing Israeli medical advances and challenges, and stay informed about JNF’s work in Israel, visit jnf. org/doctorsforisrael or call 888.JNF.0099.

What’s Fact? What’s Fiction? • Israeli scientists developed the first fully computerized, no-radiation diagnostic instrument for breast cancer. • The technology for AOL Instant Messenger was developed by four young Israelis. • When the U.S. Embassy in Nairobi, Kenya was bombed, Israeli rescue teams were on the scene within a day—and saved three victims from the rubble. • An Israeli company was the first to develop and install a large-scale solar-powered and fully functional electricity generating plant, in southern California’s Mojave Desert. • Israel sent 120 physicians to the tsunami-stricken areas of Asia, as well as 82 tons of medical equipment and humanitarian aid. • Children orphaned in the Rwandan genocide are being trained by Israeli foresters in agro-forestry and agriculture to help fight famine. • Israel was the first nation in the world to adopt the Kimberly process, the standard that certifies diamonds as “conflict free.”

Truth is they’re ALL fact. Are you surprised? Learn more at


(L-R) Matt Lester, Dr. Mel Lester, and Dr. Hershel Sandberg at the Detroit DFI dinner.

cardiovascular center at the university. The school also created a program of joint partnership in research and medicine with the Technion in Israel. Dr. Lester hopes that on his next trip to Israel he will be able to visit the completed medical center in the Arava. “I saw in the Central Arava what JNF can do with greening the land and bringing people down there,” he said. “This will encourage commerce and education. The rest of the State of Israel will flourish. It’s an exciting idea, but first you must have infrastructure and part of the infrastructure is medical care.” n


in 1966 before the Six Day War, when the Kotel and East Jerusalem were inaccessible to Jews. A member of the U.S. Air Force who was stationed in Ankara, Turkey from 1966-1968, he immediately returned to Israel once the war was over to see all of the country, including the Old City of Jerusalem. “That was very meaningful to me,” said the Detroit resident. “I really became attached to what Israel is all about. It was the beginning of a deep respect, understanding, and commitment to the State of Israel.” Today, Dr. Lester is a member of JNF’s Doctors for Israel Society (DFI), an exclusive network with chapters throughout the country that gives healthcare professionals the opportunity to support Israel and make a difference through their commitment to JNF. He was honored at a recent Detroit DFI dinner, the biggest DFI event in the area to date. Proceeds from the dinner benefitted the Central Arava Medical Center, a new state-of-the-art facility being built to provide 24-hour medical services to a remote region of southern Israel. “Being involved with JNF and Doctors for Israel Society is a wonderful experience for me,” said Dr. Lester. “One of the great things about JNF is that you can direct where your dollars go. When we were considering what to do with the dinner proceeds, I naturally chose the medical center. We raised nearly $200,000 to put into the facility. I am extremely proud of that.”


Israel is a part of my DNA; the connection is powerful and

spiritual beyond

Always a warm and

safe place for a Jew to go.

Adam Zlotnick • Amherst, NH

words. If something were to happen to

Scott Gendell • Glencoe, IL

everyone’s future will be impacted in very positive ways by what is conceived,

Israel, it would create a wound in the world that could not heal for a thousand years.

The world may not realize it yet, but

discovered and invented in Israel. It is a Strength,

Innovation, Determination Les Kovel • Cincinnati, OH

We have been to Israel so many times, and yet, each time feels like the first time. We are filled with pride at what this tiny democratic country has accomplished in such a short time. Rabbi Daniel Roberts and Elaine Rembrandt • Orange, OH

treasure we need to protect. Mark E. Miller • Tampa, FL

Israel is the beating heart of the Jewish people worldwide. JNF’s work in Israel nourishes our brethren and strengthens all that is good in the world. Michael Lederman • Little Compton, RI

WHAT ISRAEL Eretz Yisrael embodies our strength, courage and capacity as Jews to Israel is the place where I never have to apologize for being Jewish. Israel puts morality above all else, and because of this, making

peace with our

neighbors is so difficult, yet so imperative. We will never give up that hope.

aspire to great achievements in the face of insurmountable adversities. It is both the inheritance of our ancestors and the legacy to those we leave behind. Mitch Wasserman • Beachwood, OH

Judi Elovitz Greenberg • Newton Centre, MA

As a child, Israel held out the promise to me of a safe haven, of being among

First and foremost, I am a Zionist.

Tikkun olam

Jews practicing the ancient traditions of our people in peace. Today, Israel still

is the task and the dream that defines my Zionism. A partnership

holds that same romantic safe promise of home. It will forever have that deep

with Israel is my vehicle to carry out that dream. Therefore,

hold on my soul. Beckie Fischer • Hollywood, FL

JNF is truly “my voice in Israel.” Bud Levin • Bell Canyon, CA

Israel is about building a nation through creative entrepreneurial ideals, uncompromising security, and governmental financial security. It is a safety net for

Israel is inspiration and hope. Israel is

Hope for a better world. That anything can

about coming home to our people.

be accomplished through faith, strength, and

perseverance. And that even in

Sheila Scharfman • Brooklyn, NY

the worldwide Jewish community with Torah values.

dark times, our future remains brighter than ever!

David Kruger • Las Vegas, NV

Israel is the

Michael Perice • West Berlin, NJ

epicenter of sustainable practices that

will allow the world to continue at seven billion plus in population without famine and wars being fought over limited resources.

Even though I have never lived in Israel, it always feels like coming “home” to me. This is a country for which I will work myself to the bone and risk almost everything if ever called upon.

Andrew R. Wilshinsky • Milford, PA

Todd Patkin • Foxboro, MA

MEANS TO ME Israel is the homeland of all Jews. Every Jew, at least once in their life, should

To me, Israel is family and friends who welcome me lovingly; colorful shops and crafts fairs I love to frequent; restaurants whose culinary fare I dream of; gorgeous

landscapes I admire;

visit Israel and pass on the values we

sunsets that leave me breathless; beaches that bathe me in happiness; and soldiers to whom we all

were taught to our children.

owe an insurmountable debt of gratitude. Doryne Davis • Englewood, NJ

David Braverman • Naples, FL Israel is coming’s saying Kaddish

To me, Israel means ‘gettin’ er done’ no matter the Israel is where we can show ourselves at

obstacles. The

ingenuity of our people is

at the Western’s standing at the entrance

our best, as a “light unto the nations.” No

of a new community in the Negev and knowing that

palpable every single place you go and it fills

one helps shine the light better than JNF.

you and JNF were part of making it happen.

me with inspiration. Jill Lerner • Atlanta, GA

Matthew Lieberman • Atlanta, GA

Art Silber • Palm Beach Gardens, FL

“This pipe will give you the Negev.” This statement was made by an impressed United Nations investigating committee sent to the Negev Desert in June 1947 to finalize the proposed partition plan. David Ben Gurion, unwilling to accept the British Parliament’s vote to exclude the Negev from the new Jewish state, had established 11 new communities on Yom Kippur 1946 with the help of JNF and the Jewish Agency. But he was then left with the task of providing them with water. Water engineer Simcha Blass developed a water delivery system from Ashdod to the Negev. One hundred and sixty miles of pipes were laid and 15 wells were drilled, bringing water to the Negev.

Water Conservation The concept behind drip irrigation, a method that saves water and fertilizer by allowing water to drip slowly to a plant’s roots, was discovered by Simcha Blass when he observed a dripping faucet near a thriving tree. Building on this discovery, he created a drip-based tube that used a plastic emitter to slowly release water where it was needed most. In 1959, Blass partnered with Kibbutz Hatzerim to create an irrigation company called Netafim and develop the first experimental drip irrigation system.

In addition, Israeli businesses have thrived by developing efficient water recycling solutions. Exports of water-saving technologies total $1.5 billion a year. JNF has helped in this area by upgrading treatment plants, sponsoring research on the use of recycled water, and creating eco-friendly purification systems like constructed wetlands. Recycled Water Storage One of JNF’s most vital contributions to Israel’s water

Water - Then & Now

D r i l l i n g

f o r

W a t e r

Israel’s history with water is a story of constant innovation as a response to crisis and drought. In the face of limited natural water resources and arid and semi-arid conditions, Israel is pushed to find creative ways to supply water to its domestic, industrial and agricultural sectors and JNF has played an integral role. The National Water Carrier The National Water Carrier dominated Israel’s water policies during the early years of the State. The country’s largest water project transfers water from the Sea of Galilee in the north to the highly populated center and arid south with an hourly flow capacity of more than 71,000 cubic meters. Most of Israel’s water infrastructure is linked to this 81-mile-long carrier, a system of giant pipes, open canals, tunnels, reservoirs and large-scale pumping stations that raise the water from 640 feet below sea level to 132 feet above sea level. The construction of the National Water Carrier started in 1953 and was completed in 1964. Initially, 80% of its water was allocated to agriculture and 20% for drinking water. By 2010, 80% was used for drinking and domestic purposes.

i n

t h e

N e g e v

Israeli drip irrigation technology has been exported across the globe and is arguably the world’s most valued agricultural innovation since the invention of the impact sprinkler in the 1930s. Water Recycling and Reuse Thirty years ago, Israel was confronted with water scarcity as its population swelled and its main water sources became overtaxed. Because of the domestic demand for water, there was simply not enough water for agriculture, so Israel turned to waste water recycling. At the time, authorities feared the public would reject the idea of toilet water being used to grow food. Today, nearly half of the water used for irrigation in Israel comes from recycled effluents. By the turn of the century, Israel was still the only country to recycle waste water extensively. But, climate change and widespread water shortages have caused other countries to begin following suit. About 86% of household waste water is recycled in Israel, or 22% of the total water used annually. That ratio is four times higher than any other country. There are 32 large water treatment plants and 50 medium-sized plants that supply water for agriculture at half the cost of fresh water.

economy has been the development of 250 reservoirs to store recycled water for reuse. In the 80’s, JNF focused on flood water storage to develop additional water resources and prevent flood damage. Within a decade, this method was exhausted and JNF began waste water storage on a large scale, increasing Israel’s water supply by 12%. Treated effluents are stored during the winter for use during the long, hot summer months. Desalination With the recent advent of large, efficient desalination plants, Israel averted the crisis of inadequate domestic water supply. Israel produces 350 million cubic meters of water a year through desalination at an exceptionally low cost per cubic meter, and by 2017, the amount is expected to double. Desalination and recycled water now account for 50% of the water consumed in Israel. With continued advancements and innovation, Israel will be able to supply water to an ever-growing population, even in times of drought. n

K i b b u t z

N e g b a

Before the State of Israel was declared by David Ben Gurion, the Jewish settlers used a method of tower and stockade settlements built in the dead of night to claim the land that had been rightfully purchased by JNF. Sixty-five years later, this pioneering spirit can be found in the Negev in the families who are bringing innovation and community to the desert. During the War of Independence, Kibbutz Negba sat at the junction of the road between Tel Aviv and Be’er Sheva, and the road between Ashkelon and Hebron/ Jerusalem. Though only 20 acres, the kibbutz of about 70 families was a critical stronghold for the Jewish settlers: if Negba were destroyed, enemy troops, who had already taken the Ashkelon-Hebron-Jerusalem road, would be free to march towards Tel Aviv. “For my father, Yaakov Vilan—commander of Negba, the kibbutz’s settlers, and soldiers of the Givati Brigade stationed there—the life of the new state rested on their shoulders,” said Avshalom “Abu” Vilan, former Knesset member for Meretz, co-founder of Peace Now, and current Secretary General of the Israel Farmer’s Federation. Founded two months before World War II, Kibbutz Negba marked the southernmost point of Israel in July 1939 (Negba means south in Hebrew), the 50th of the tower and stockade settlements that sprang up overnight. An Ottoman law stated that any building with a roof could not be destroyed by authorities without a long legal process, so the Jews would build a square wall with a tower in it and set up a few tents that by law could not be dismantled by British authorities. During the War of Independence, Negba sustained two major attacks by Egyptian troops. The first occurred when

an Egyptian tank crossed the gate of the kibbutz. That tank is preserved there today as a memorial. The second attack took place on July 12, the birthday of the kibbutz. By 3pm, the settlers were sure that the Egyptians would attack but they did not have enough soldiers to launch a counter attack. According to Abu, his father went to the bunker where the wounded soldiers were and beseeched them to go back to the front, which they all did. Yaakov had decided that Negba would be the next Masada, that the people would not be beaten. He gave a hand grenade to everyone so that they would all commit suicide if the Egyptian troops advanced on the kibbutz. “My wife’s mother was a soldier, 27 years old, an only child,” said Abu. “When she got the hand grenade, she wondered how her parents, who were living in Chile, would go on if she died. But she was convinced there was nothing else to do. They believed there was no other alternative. People were totally committed.” Though Israel is no longer struggling for survival and

part of JNF’s Blueprint Negev initiative. Together with the OR Movement, JNF is building new towns in the desert whose residents speak of improved quality of life, a warm and supportive community, and a strong connection to the land. They are playing a significant role in developing the land of Israel today. “I feel very fortunate to be part of building a new community in the Negev and playing an active role in its development,” said Givot Bar resident Jessica Kedar. “Visitors often ask us how we cope with being so far away from Tel Aviv. But we wouldn’t want to live anywhere else. We have everything we need here in Givot Bar.” If not for the bravery and determination of the original pioneers of Israel, these communities would not have the freedom and land to flourish as they do today. Abu, still a resident of Negba, once served as economic manager of the kibbutz and believes that the historical point of view is important to better understand the meaning of Israel’s current situation. “In 1948, David Ben Gurion made a calculated risk,” he said. “He assumed that 600,000 people—the population of Israel at the time—were strong enough to stand together and to win. He understood that for these people, there

independence, the modern-day pioneers in the Negev are tackling challenges of a different sort. As Central Israel becomes increasingly crowded and expensive, the Negev represents Israel’s final frontier; to better utilize Israel’s land assets, the Negev must be developed in a responsible and sustainable manner. This realization of Ben Gurion’s dream is a national priority and an integral

was no other alternative and this gave them moral power. At the end of the day, it’s the reason they succeeded. “On a clear day, from the water tower, you can see Ashdod, Ashkelon, Gush Etzion, the Mediterranean. From this small hill in Negba, you can see half of Israel. It emphasizes how small the country is and what a critical situation it was for these settlements.” n

Pioneers: Yesterday & Today T h e

K e d a r

F a m i l y

o f

G i v o t

B a r

T h e

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If you ask most JNF donors where they learned their love of Israel, they will say, “From my parents.” For so many years, generation after generation fought for the dream of a Jewish homeland. Since the establishment of the State of Israel, parents have taught their children the importance of continuing this support—and many have found JNF to be the perfect vehicle for doing so. Growing up, NY residents Jessica Levine and her siblings Ben and Dara were always involved in JNF events, thanks to their father, Jeff Levine. “We always heard our dad talking about JNF,” said Jessica. “For all of us, we felt a strong connection to Israel and to the widespread scope of JNF’s work. We appreciated that you can see the positive development and tangible effects on the day-to-day lives of Israelis.” Today, Jessica, Ben, and Dara are all members of the NY chapter of JNFuture, JNF’s young leadership division. Jessica and Ben sit on the board as Events Chair and Chair, respectively. Jeff Levine, JNF’s National President-elect, says he in turn was inspired by his parents’ philanthropy, who were active members of their temple. Jeff found JNF appealing as an organization because, rather than only looking for major contributors, it welcomed people at all giving levels to participate. “I’ve always been impressed with JNF’s laser-like focus on the needs of Israel,” he said. “You can do good work for many charities, but if you want to direct your donations for benefitting Israel, JNF is your organization. Even aspects that take place in the United States, such as the Caravan for Democracy advocacy program, are Israel-centric. JNF is all Israel, all the time.” Jeff began his involvement with JNF in 1997 and was honored at a New York City Tree of Life™ award dinner in 1999. His philosophy for passing on philanthropic inclinations to his children is this: “If you lead, they will follow.” And follow they have. Andy Klein went to his first JNF meeting in Baltimore, MD in 1994 at the request of his mother Shirley, who ran JNF’s first water campaign to build Nachal Oz reservoir and helped found the Sapphire Society, JNF’s women’s major gifts society. A Zionist, but not an ardent one at the time, he liked the environmental angle of JNF’s work: “As a child of the 70’s, the aspects of renewing the land, planting trees,

and taking care of people appealed to me.” Not long after that meeting, Andy became President of the Baltimore Board of Directors, and has since held a number of JNF titles, including Mid-Atlantic Zone President and Mid-Atlantic Zone Chair. He currently serves as Co-Vice President of Education. Additionally, he was inspired by Ronald Lauder’s leadership to tackle Israel’s water issues and today is a board member of the JNF Parsons Water Fund. As a father of three, Andy believes in the importance of passing on the values of leadership, philanthropy, and tikkun olam to the next generation. His wife Jayne is the local Sapphire Society Co-Chair and serves on the National Sapphire Society board. “We’re always concerned about how to convey JNF to the next generation, but it doesn’t really hit home until you have become a parent yourself,” he said. “You start thinking about the next generation, you see that you have an impact on your children. “JNF is able to give us something in America that creates a direct connection to Israel. Some donors may never get to visit Israel, but they can carry JNF’s vision in their hearts.” “My parents always stressed how important Israel was for my future and the future of the Jewish people,” recalled Judi Elovitz Greenberg of Newton Centre, MA. Her first trip to Israel was to celebrate her bat mitzvah, and she spent her junior year of college there, where she fell in love with the Negev: “It felt like it was where I was supposed to be.” Years later, Sharon Freedman, JNF National Campaign Director, invited her to a JNF event.

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“They talked about the Negev and it warmed my heart that someone else was thinking about the Negev,” said Judi. “I learned about JNF’s close ties to Israel and how everything we did went directly to Israel. For me, that was the clincher.” JNF has become a meaningful part of life for all generations of the family tree. Judi and her mother Elaine Elovitz are both members of the Sapphire Society. Judi and her husband Norm have a blended family of five children who share their parents’ connection to Israel. Their youngest son Sam dedicated his bar mitzvah to the Red Mountain Therapeutic Riding Center at Kibbutz Grofit. Along with Judi’s parents Elaine and Gerald, Judi and Norm dedicated a therapy room at the Sderot Indoor Recreation Center. Their son Adam recently went on a Taglit-Birthright Israel trip and saw the therapy room’s dedication plaque. “He called my mother crying and saying thank you,” said Judi. “It was truly an example of l’dor v’dor. Seeing that plaque, he felt like he wasn’t visiting a foreign country; he was home.” n

Israel is a place full of wonders. It doesn’t matter where you go. Wherever you look, it seems anything is possible, regardless of the circumstances. JNF’s Wednesday bus tours take you on a journey through the wonders of Israel’s past, present, and future at some of JNF’s key projects. Take Sderot. For the last 12 years, the town—located only one mile from the border of the Gaza Strip—has had to deal with thousands of rockets and mortar shells. At times, it could be hit by dozens of rockets a day. One “Color Red” alert after the other; this is the daily reality of the people of Sderot. And yet, while rockets are falling all around, you can find hundreds of children and their parents from Sderot

huge dump site, the largest municipal park in the country is being constructed. How big? Try Manhattan’s Central Park times two. Yes, in Be’er Sheva. The park will boast many exciting attractions: the famous Abraham’s Well is being turned into a state-of-the-art visitor center and a 12,000-seat amphitheatre will be completed in about a year. There will be a five-mile-long promenade, an old water reservoir turned into an artificial lake, a sports center, historic sites, and archaeological sites. Thanks to JNF and many others, the park is making David Ben Gurion, as well as all of us, very proud. Israel is a definitely a place full of wonders.

of Rehovot, formerly a secret bullet factory that is now a museum, supported by JNF? Almost 2.5 million 9mm bullets were manufactured here for the Haganah between 1945 and 1948, right under the noses of the British. Twenty-five feet below the laundry and bakery of what seemed to be an ordinary kibbutz, a group of young men and women ran one of the boldest operations in the country’s history without telling a living soul, including their very own spouses! How did they manage to do it? How sophisticated was the system and schedule they ran in order to prevent anyone from finding out? What happened to the one person who did find out? How

A Place of Wonders

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playing happily and safely in their own town—in the oneof-a-kind 20,000 sq. ft. Sderot Indoor Recreation Center built by JNF. The secure indoor playground provides children with the opportunity to still be kids and do what kids do all over the world, even under heavy fire. Avi, age nine, described it in one simple sentence: “For us, this is the REAL Wonderland.” Israel is no doubt a place full of wonders. In the city of Be’er Sheva, “the Capital of the Negev” as it’s often called, a long-time dream is finally becoming a reality. In the middle of an area that was once the home of Abraham but in more recent times was no more than a

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Check out some of the new communities being built in the Negev by the OR Movement, with the help of JNF. Families from all over the country are becoming modern-day pioneers, choosing to build their homes in the middle of the desert and literally making it bloom. Givot Bar is a great example. Just a few years ago, it was a vacant hill about which no one really cared. Today, it boasts a thriving community with over 100 families, beautiful houses, an amazing park, schools, playgrounds, and much more. Israel really is a place full of wonders. And how about the Ayalon Institute in the city

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did they handle the hundreds of soldiers who showed up after a British train was blown up just a hundred yards from the factory, and what does warm beer have to do with any of this? You’ll just have to join one of JNF’s weekly tours to the Negev to find the answers to all of the above questions. See the Holy Land like never before, and discover why and how JNF is your voice in Israel. No wonder there.n To sign up for JNF’s weekly Wednesday bus tour, visit

TAKE ADVANTAGE OF TAX-FREE IRA GIFTS The American Taxpayer Relief Act extended the extraordinary opportunity to make tax-free rollover gifts from IRAs to charity through December 31, 2013. JEWISH NATIONAL FUND


An owner of an IRA who is at least 70.5 years of age may instruct the trustee to distribute directly to JNF up to $100,000 without counting the distribution as taxable income. Also, the distribution will count towards the IRA owner’s

EARN UP TO 9.5% ON YOUR MONEY, AND 100% OF A NATION’S GRATITUDE. For as little as $5,000, you can help achieve your financial goals and those of a nation — Israel. There is more reason than ever to create a charitable gift annuity with Jewish National Fund. JNF offers planned giving opportunities that: • Give you a generous return • Offer the benefit of tax savings • Provide recognition in Israel • Ensure JNF receives much-needed support for its projects in Israel

required minimum distribution. To make sure that your gift will qualify or

for more details, please call a JNF Planned Giving Specialist at 800.562.7526 or go to

For more information, call 800.562.7526 or visit

SINGLE-LIFE GIFT ANNUITY* Age Rate Age Rate 65 5.5% 78 6.8% 66 5.5% 79 7.0% 67 5.6% 80 7.2% 68 5.7% 81 7.4% 69 5.8% 82 7.5% 70 5.8% 83 7.7% 71 5.9% 84 7.9% 72 6.0% 85 8.1% 73 6.1% 86 8.3% 74 6.3% 87 8.6% 75 6.4% 88 8.9% 76 6.5% 89 9.2% 77 6.7% 90 & Over 9.5% *Two life rates will vary Rates as of April 1, 2012.

JNF SPEAKERS BUREAU Bring world-renowned speakers to your next event JNF Speakers Bureau is a unique service that brings top speakers to your community. Gain inside and unparalleled perspectives on Israel and a variety of other topics at your meetings, community events, synagogues, schools, sisterhoods, men’s clubs, and conferences. Bring a powerful voice to your next event.

Book your speaker today at For more information contact or 212.879.9305 ext. 252.


Jamie Geller Shares the Joy of Kosher Cooking IT MIGHT BE HARD TO BELIEVE,

Jamie Geller

My personal goal is that every Jewish person feels a connection to Israel, whether they live here or support it through organizations such as JNF.” n The Joy of Israel series will air at the beginning of March. To sign up to receive the first episode, visit JoyofKosher. com/JoyofIsrael. Joy of Kosher with Jamie Geller is the #1 kosher food and recipe website in the world, featuring over 5,800 recipes from Jamie Geller, kosher chefs, food bloggers and community members. The companion print magazine is published bimonthly and is revolutionizing the way people think about kosher food. Find more from Jamie at

Recipe: Salmon Cakes with Tropical Fruit Salsa (Kosher for Passover) Croquettes are cute and elegant for your starter course. They’re also wonderfully light and refreshing. The tropical salsa is a combination of fresh pineapple, mango, red onion, jalapeño, cilantro, and lime juice—the perfect complement to the richness of the salmon. The balance of sweet and savory flavors instantly pleases the palate. This is a starter with zing! INGREDIENTS For cakes • 1 (2-pound) side of salmon, skin on • 1/2 cup red onion, diced • 2 tablespoons matzo meal • 2 large eggs, lightly beaten • 1 teaspoon kosher salt • Freshly ground black pepper • 4 tablespoons olive oil For salsa • 1 cup diced pineapple • 1/2 cup diced mango • 1/2 cup diced red onion • 2 tablespoons chopped cilantro • 1/2 jalapeño, seeded and finely chopped • Juice of 1 lime • 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt

DIRECTIONS Preheat oven to 350º F and lightly grease a large baking sheet. Bake salmon skin side down for 25 to 30 minutes or until cooked all the way through. Let cool completely. Once salmon is cooled, gently flake away from the skin and break into large chunks. Place in a large bowl and combine with eggs, red onion, matzo meal, salt and pepper. Stir to mix well. Scoop about 1/3 cup at a time into your hands and form into a round patty about 1/4-inch thick. Place on a sheet pan and repeat with remaining mixture until you have formed 10 cakes. Refrigerate for 30 minutes. Meanwhile, in a medium bowl combine pineapple, mango, red onion, cilantro, jalapeño, lime juice and salt. Mix well and set aside. Heat olive oil in a large skillet over medium high heat. Fry 5 cakes at a time for about 5 to 8 minutes per side or until golden brown and crispy. Drain on a paper towel-lined plate while frying remaining cakes. To serve, top each cake with a few tablespoons of salsa.

• Time saver tip: Use canned salmon in place of the fresh baked fish. •

Prep Time: 15 min • Cook Time: 45 min • Ready Time: 60 min • Servings: 10 Cakes Recipe from the Pesach 2011 issue of the Joy of Kosher with Jamie Geller magazine


Brought up in a proud Jewish home, Israel was always a part of Jamie’s life, whether it was attending the Israel day parade, visiting Israel, or planting trees—which was her first encounter with JNF. “Growing up, every time we would come to Israel, we would plant a tree,” she said. “I think about JNF and look at the projects: JNF has literally helped to create an incredible community in the Diaspora that is connected to Israel. The projects offer multiple levels of engagement— agriculture, the environment, the social aspect. I love JNF’s 360 degree approach to supporting Israel; it’s support in a multi-dimensional way.” While she has supported Israel through different causes her whole life, as an award-winning producer who has worked for HBO, CNN, and Food Network in New York City, Jamie never imagined actually moving to Israel. But after she met her husband and started a family, she knew it was what she was meant to do. Only six months after making aliyah on Nefesh B’Nefesh’s 10th anniversary flight in August 2012, she says her husband calls her “Israel’s spokesperson.” Her “Joy of Israel” web series about her family’s aliyah experience has garnered over 100,000 views. Jamie lives in Beit Shemesh with her husband and five children, who range in age from one to seven. She travels back to the United States every four months or so for industry events, book signings, and judging cooking competitions, among other things. “If you come to Israel, you feel something, an intrinsic pull,” she said. “Living in Israel, I feel how important it is to be connected to the land and people of Israel.


but Jamie Geller, co-founder of Kosher Media Network, publisher of The Joy of Kosher with Jamie Geller magazine and companion website, and author of two cookbooks with a third coming out in October 2013, considers herself an amateur chef. “When I got married, I had no cooking experience,” she said. “My mother never cooked, so I never learned myself. I figured it would be easy, but I made lots of mistakes in the kitchen. The smoke alarm went off a lot. But I slowly started turning out decent food. My husband suggested I write a cookbook. The rest is history!” Her philosophy is simple—she doesn’t want you to slave away in the kitchen, she wants to get you out of the kitchen—and since making aliyah last August, she has a new goal that echoes JNF’s Positively Israel campaign: Jamie wants to rebrand Israel. “Israel’s reputation in the media is hurtful, it’s very anti-Israel,” she said. “My goal is for people to experience Israel through travel, trips, food. Israel is diverse in its community and geography. There are so many wonderful JNF communities that have helped rebuild Israel before our eyes. I want people to discover this for themselves.” Jamie hopes to do this with a new 10-episode web series entitled “Joy of Israel,” which will celebrate the known and unknown about Israel. It is a hybrid of food, travel and culture. “Food offers an incredible window of connecting people to culture,” she said. “It’s apolitical and crosses the religious divide. Regardless of background or language, food is a unifier. It can break down barriers.”

JNF Brings Students of all Faiths to Israel TWENTY-FIVE STUDENT LEADERS FROM



across the United States traveled to Israel with JNF this past January to explore Israel’s distinctive democracy and meet with political, cultural, and community leaders from all backgrounds and faiths in order to gain a deeper understanding of Israel beyond the media. “I have been fascinated with the country of Israel since about the 8th grade,” said Alexandra Wiggins, a sophomore at the University of Pennsylvania who participated in the second annual Caravan for Democracy mission to Israel. “Everyone I know who has visited, no matter their race, religion, or ethnicity, has felt a connection to the country and the wonders it has to offer. I was beyond excited to experience all the excitement and adventure myself.” Caravan for Democracy is a program of JNF and Media Watch International whose goal is to facilitate constructive dialogue about Israel and the Middle East on college campuses across America. The program brings speakers from Israel and the United States to campuses to address Israel’s unique contributions to the world, its vibrant democracy and its commitment to peace in the region. “JNF is honored to bring such a distinguished and diverse group of student leaders of all faiths to Israel to see firsthand the intricacies that make Israel the incredible and dynamic place that it is,” said Mara Suskauer, Director of Israel Advocacy and Education. “We believe that by

sharing Israel with student leaders, we will continue to help change the dialogue about Israel.” This year’s Caravan for Democracy mission was comprised of students from West Point, University of Virginia, University of Pennsylvania, University of Florida, Duke University, Babson College, Adelphi University, UCLA and a number of other universities, all significant leaders in student government, clubs, athletics, and service activities. Chosen by a selection committee from a pool of 80 applicants, these motivated young people submitted a written application and took part in a video interview. Adrian Paneto, a junior at the University of Florida, described the first day of the mission as “a day that was marked by moments that will not soon be forgotten.” For all participants on the mission, the trip was about sharing an experience that examines the complexity that is Israel. On a visit to Yad Vashem, the students met an Auschwitz survivor who lost his whole family before making his way to the Promised Land. “It made me appreciate the resiliency of the Jewish people,” said Trevor Myers, a junior at the University of Florida. “As young people living in a modern Western world, we can sometimes lose faith in God for the simplest of reasons—a bad breakup, bad grades, or even just a bad day—but the fact that this man still held his faith after all that he was subjected to made me reevaluate my relationship with God.”

2013 Caravan for Democracy participants in Israel.

“I have gained a better understanding of the geopolitical issues that Israel faces and can speak more intelligently about why certain things are the way they are in Israel,” said Shabhia Akter, a sophomore at Lafayette College. “I am extremely thankful for this experience and look forward to telling my peers and colleagues about all the new things I have learned during this incredible journey.” This program would not have been possible without generous donors who gave their vision and support, including Joan and Sam Ginsburg and the Milton and Beatrice Shapiro Scholarship Fund. To learn more about supporting this program, contact Mara Suskauer at n

JNF Israel Day at Camp Lavi EVERY YEAR, CAMP LAVI IN LAKEWOOD, PA holds an Israel Day. But this

summer’s Israel Day was a little different—it was a JNF Israel Day. JNF-Halutza liaison Yedidya Harush suggested the JNF tie-in to Camp Director Joey Hoenig, who loved the idea. “I thought of doing something at camp in the spirit of chesed, Israel, and Zionism,” said Yedidya, who is also the camp’s head Israeli shaliach. “JNF is the right organization to do it with.” Lavi employs 80 Israelis who helped transform the camp into a huge Israel carnival, complete with Israeli flags and Israeli music. The 650 campers, ranging in age from 10-17, got very involved, playing fun games such as extinguishing candles with water guns and walking around with a cup of water without spilling it. They participated in mock army training, made pita, and had Maccabiah swim competitions. The night before, the Israeli staff held a memorial and spoke about Israel’s heroes and their bravery, and Campers on Israel Day. Israel’s wars and history. JNF posters festooned the camp and a video presentation on some of JNF’s important projects in Israel was shown. An email went out to the campers’ parents telling them that Israel Day was going to be a fundraiser for JNF and asking them to send in donations. With matching funds from Joey, Camp Lavi’s JNF Israel Day raised $10,000. “Overall, Israel Day was a great success,” said Joey. “Because of JNF, Yedidya, and his excitement about JNF, it brought the day to a different level. I’d love to do it again next year and raise more money and awareness about JNF.”

Couple’s Charitable Giving Funds Exciting Projects in Negev ATTORNEY JEROME K. GROSSMAN, PAST

Student Lounge. Jerry chose the projects with Danielle’s interests in mind. “As part of Makor, I had visited the Arava Institute. Danielle and I had talked about it. Due to its outreach, politically, and its work with environmental issues, it resonated with her,” he said. While they didn’t discuss the Central Arava Medical Danielle and Irving Grossman Center or Be’er Sheva River Park Amphitheatre directly, Jerry knows that these are projects Danielle would have supported. Danielle, who had never been to Israel, was hoping to go on a JNF trip, but passed away before she got the chance. “It would have been wonderful to fund some of these projects while she was living and take her over there to see them for herself,” said Jerry. “I think she and Irving would be extremely pleased that their legacies have been able to fund these wonderful projects.” n

JNF Offers Many Attractive Estate Planning Tools By Matt Bernstein, CFP, JNF Chief Planned Giving Officer WE



breathlessly for Congress to act and avoid the fiscal cliff. What we got is something called The American Taxpayer Relief Act of 2012. One of the provisions of this law was to leave the estate and lifetime gift exemption at $5 million per individual and $10 million for a husband and wife. The tax on estates rose, however, to 40% from 35%. This means that every dollar over these limits will be taxed at 40%. While the majority of taxpayers are not affected by these numbers, those who are can find significant savings through creative estate planning techniques. Charitable giving strategies can be used to help donors reduce their estates, provide for heirs, and help JNF with significant gifts in a smart and tax efficient way. The current economic climate, with its historic low interest rates, has made a charitable lead trust an attractive estate planning tool. This gift plan allows a donor to transfer assets to family members at a reduced tax cost while making a generous gift to JNF. During the trust’s term, JNF receives an annual income and at the termination of the trust, the assets are returned to the donor’s heirs. The value to the donor and their heirs is

the reduction of the estate and the ability to gift valuable estate assets at a very low or zero tax cost. Today’s low interest rates make the gift tax deduction very valuable. Here’s an example: Lucinda and Alfred own several apartment buildings and have accumulated an estate in excess of their combined exclusions. In doing their estate planning, they realize the estate tax could significantly reduce the value of the estate they wish to pass to Today’s low their heirs. They support Israel and wish to include interest rates philanthropy in their plan, but are looking for ideas make the gift tax that will not disinherit their children and grandchildren. deduction very One of their buildings was appraised at $3 million, valuable. down significantly from four years ago. The building has stable tenants and produces about 6% a year after expenses are paid. Transferring the building to a JNF charitable lead trust paying 6% with a 15-year trust term could produce the following results: • Using today’s low discount rates, the gift value of a $3 million gift for 15 years at 6% is about $495,060. Even though Lucinda and Alfred transferred a gift for the ultimate benefit of their children valued at $3 million, the IRS considers its present interest value at only $495,060.

• By using a portion of their combined $10 million gift tax exclusion, the gift will be tax-free to the kids. Lucinda and Alfred will still have $9,504,940 of lifetime exemption available for other tax-free gifts. • For the next 15 years JNF will receive an annual income of $180,000 per year. • At the end of 15 years the building will be returned to Lucinda and Alfred’s children without any taxes owed. (If the children wish to sell the property at some time, they will owe capital gains taxes.) At a 4% growth rate the building will have a value of approximately $5,402,305! This scenario would reduce their estate tax burden, give their children a very valuable asset and provide Jewish National Fund with a significant income for 15 years, all for very little or no tax cost. We like to call it a win-win scenario. Another option is our charitable gift annuity program, which allows donors to earn current income, save on income and capital gains taxes, and support Israel at the same time. With interest rates still hovering near all-time lows, the gift annuity rates we offer our donors are very competitive and may provide more income than some bonds or commercially available investments. JNF’s Planned Giving Specialists are available to guide you through the process with detailed financial information that you can share with any of your advisors.n To learn more about JNF’s planned giving options, call 800.562.7526 or email


“I had the opportunity to introduce her to some of JNF’s projects,” said Jerry. “I thought it was a very good fit for her charitable interests. We had things set up so that her son would be provided for during his lifetime and then the bulk of her estate after he died would go to JNF.” Her son passed away in 2009. As executor and trustee of the estate and the trusts, Jerry sold the business at the end of 2011, which generated millions of dollars to JNF. Jerry was first introduced to JNF about a decade ago by his friend, David Margules, a member of JNF’s Makor speakers bureau, which Jerry joined. “Makor offers a great opportunity to travel around the country to speak on behalf of JNF and raise money by addressing groups about the wide range of different projects,” said Jerry. Over the years, he has become a strong advocate for JNF, asking people to consider leaving a bequest to JNF when appropriate. The Irving and Danielle Grossman trusts are a shining example of this: their legacy has helped to fund three of JNF’s exciting projects in the Negev: the Be’er Sheva River Park Amphitheatre, the Central Arava Medical Center, and the Arava Institute Dormitory


President of JNF’s Delaware Board of Directors and the Mid-Atlantic Planned Giving Chair, came to know Irving and Danielle Grossman (no relation) in the 1980s when he started providing legal representation to both the couple and their business, Beacon Container Corporation, a box manufacturing company. “They were both very charitable individuals,” said Jerry. “In connection with estate planning, Irving and Danielle decided that they wanted to do something in a charitable way with part of their estate. Over Jerome Grossman the years, the focus of their charitable giving changed. They were always interested in Israel, but not necessarily other Jewish organizations besides their synagogue.” Irving passed away in 2004. Before Danielle passed away in 2008, she and Jerry had many discussions about what to do with her estate.




(L-R) Major General (Res.) Uzi Dayan, Chairman of the Green Horizons youth movement, presented Mel Cutler, Liz Cutler and Doug Cutler, all Century Council and President’s Society members, with a plaque thanking them for their dedication and support of the program.

(L-R) Phil Rosenfield (President’s Society), Green Horizons Chairman Major General (Res.) Uzi Dayan, Chairman of the Board Jeffrey Davis (Century Council, President’s Society), New England Board member Bill Rosenthal (President’s Society), and Sandy Davis (Century Council, President’s Society, Sapphire Society) at a parlor meeting hosted by Phil and Judy Rosenfield.

(L-R) New England Board member Richard Noone (Herzl Society), Senior Vice President at BNY Wealth Management, and Aviva Sapers (Herzl Society), CEO of Sapers & Wallack, presented a fireside chat on “Tax Smart Ways to Give to Charity and Receive Benefits in Return” at the home of Sapers and JNF Executive Board member Judith Sydney (Sapphire Society).

(L-R) Stephen Patkin (President’s Society) and his son Todd Patkin (World Chairman’s Council), Vice President of Campaign and Executive Board member, at the New England Positively Israel breakfast.

(L-R) National Major Gifts Chair and President of the Capital District Kenneth Segel (Century Council, Negev Society) proudly presented Neil and Jane Golub (President’s Society, Sapphire Society) with a JNF plaque during a gala event in honor of their commitment to JNF.

(L-R) Dr. Leon Steinberg (Herzl Society), Helen Feldman (Sapphire Society), Robert Feldman (Century Council), and Faye Steinberg (Sapphire Society) at the annual JNF Sunday brunch in Las Vegas.

(L-R) Mountain States Advisory Board Chair Gene Kay (Century Council) and Mountain States Campaign Executive Roberta Witkow visited Aleh Negev during JNF’s Discover Israel mission.

Denice Reich (Sapphire Society) and husband Mo McMaken learned about Ir David during JNF’s Discover Israel mission.

Joel and Ann Moskowitz (President’s Society) at the Orange County donor appreciation event in Irvine.

David Moskowitz (Herzl Society), Mo McMaken and Mountain States Campaign Executive Roberta Witkow enjoyed dinner at the Anna Ticho House during JNF’s Discover Israel mission.

(L-R) JNF Orange County Director Adele Bilewitz with Edgar and Huguette Moran (Century Council, Herzl Society) at the Orange County donor appreciation event in Irvine.

(L-R) Ted Zinman (President’s Society), Toni Dusik (Sapphire Society), and Milan Dusik at the JNF Arizona major donor appreciation lunch.

(L-R) Steve Rosenfield (Herzl Society), Marc Kelman (President’s Society, Century Council), and Linda Rosenfield (Sapphire Society) at JNF Draft Night in Phoenix.

JNF CEO Russell Robinson presented Love of Israel dinner honorees Robert and Cheryl Fey (Negev Society) with the prestigious Love of Israel Award. (L-R) Daughters Julie Fey-Clark and Robin Rosado, Robert and Cheryl Fey, and Russell Robinson.

(L-R) Steve Garrett, dinner Chair Debbie Orgen-Garrett, keynote speaker Dennis Prager, JNF CEO Russell Robinson, dinner Chair Elaine Land Dexter (Sapphire Society), James Borax, and Palm Springs & Desert Region President Sheri Borax (Sapphire Society) at the 2012 Love of Israel Dinner.


(L-R) Judy Bachman received her Sapphire Society pin from event host Faye Steinberg at the Quiche and Tell luncheon in Las Vegas. (L-R) Carol Mayers received her Sapphire Society pin from Priscilla Schwartz-Hodes (Sapphire Society) at the Quiche and Tell luncheon at Faye Steinberg’s home.

(L-R, standing) JNF CEO Russell Robinson with JNF Arizona past Presidents Marc Kelman (President’s Society, Century Council), Burt Kruglick (Century Council), Bruce Goldberg (Herzl Society). (L-R, seated) Steven Scheiner (Herzl Society), current President Ann Zinman (Sapphire Society, President’s Society), and Si Eisenberg (Century Council).

(L-R) JNF Orange County Director Adele Bilewitz, Orange County Board President Cookie Sieger (Sapphire Society, Century Council, President’s Society), and Aloha Saxon (Sapphire Society, President’s Society) at the Orange County donor appreciation event held at the home of Alison and Howard Hyman in Irvine, CA.


(L-R) Northern California Board member Karen Raz; JNF CEO Russell Robinson; Andy David, new Consul General to San Francisco and the Pacific Northwest; Gideon Lustig, Deputy Consul General of Israel for the Pacific Northwest; and Northern California Regional President Marlene Maier (President’s Society, Sapphire Society, Century Council).

(L-R) Miami-Dade Board President Ron Kriss (Herzl Society) and board member Marni Kriss (Herzl Society, Sapphire Society) at the 2012 JNF National Conference in Orlando.

(L-R) Russell Selevan (World Chairman’s Council) and Dr. Ron Elinoff at a Doctors for Israel Society event in Jacksonville at the home of Drs. Dayan and Jeffrey Sandler.

Doctors for Israel Society Co-Chairs Dr. Jeffrey Sandler and Dr. Dayan Sandler (Sapphire Society) at the 2012 JNF National Conference in Orlando.


(L-R) Sapphire Society members Elaine Land Dexter and Sheri Borax, President of the Palm Springs & Desert Region, at a parlor meeting.



Susan and Albert Waksman hosted a Sapphire Society event at their home. (L-R, seated) Ida Raye Chernin (Century Council); Dr. Sara Mandel (Sapphire Society); guest speaker Karmit Arbel-Rumbak, JNF-Green Horizons liaison; and Tina Gordon (Sapphire Society). (L-R, standing) Brenda Johnston (Sapphire Society) and Maxine Solomon (Century Council).

(L-R) JNF COO Harold Cohen, Joan Levenson (Negev Society), and Dr. Bart Levenson (Negev Society) at a dinner for Florida residents during the 2012 JNF National Conference in Orlando.

(L-R) Tampa Board member Susan Turner (Sapphire Society) and Board Co-President Betsy Marcadis (Sapphire Society) at the Florida Dinner during the 2012 JNF National Conference in Orlando.

(L-R) Larry Frankel (President’s Society), Michael Blank (Negev Society), and National (L-R) Dr. Shari Yudenfreund-Sujka (Sapphire Society); Aaron Gorovitz (President’s Vice President of Regions Bruce Gould (World Chairman’s Council, Negev Society) on the Society); Karmit Arbel-Rumbak, JNF-Green Horizons liaison; and Bruce Gould (World President’s Society Mission. Chairman’s Council, Negev Society), National Vice President of Regions, at a board meeting in Orlando.

(L-R) Doctors for Israel Society National Co-Chair Dr. Robert Norman (Century Council, President’s Society), Dr. Melinda Wolf (Century Council, President’s Society, Circle of Sapphire), and Harvey Hertz (World Chairman’s Council, President’s Society) at the 2012 JNF National Conference in Orlando.

(L-R) Richard Rappaport (Century Council, Negev Society) and Ido Aharoni, Israel Consul General to New York, at the National Conference in Orlando.

(L-R) Century Council and Negev Society members Sy and Debra Israel and Bob Levine (World Chairman’s Council) at the major donor dessert reception during the 2012 JNF National Conference in Orlando.



(L-R) JNF Campaign Executive Debbie Regent, Southern Florida Co-President Beckie Fischer (Sapphire Society) and her daughter, Danielle Traub, at the Young Israel Hollywood breakfast.

(L-R) Myron and Debbie Stayman (Century Council, Negev Society), Barbara and Harold Cohen, and Ken Segel (Century Council, Negev Society).

(L-R) Earl Rothstein and Marilynn Rothstein (Sapphire Society) at a dinner for Florida residents during the 2012 JNF National Conference in Orlando.

(L-R) Joel and Lynn Klausner (Herzl Society) at the 2012 JNF Orlando National Conference in Orlando.

(L-R) Irving Wiseman (Century Council, President’s Society) and JNF Israel Emissary Ronnie Porat at a JNF Palm Beach Board of Directors meeting.

(L-R) Danny Ayalon, Israeli Deputy Minister of Foreign Affairs, and JNF Broward Board President Vivian Grossman (Century Council, Circle of Sapphire, Negev Society) in Israel during the President’s Society Mission.

(L-R) Dr. Robert Colton (Century Council) and Southern Florida Director Laura Sherry at a JNF South Florida Board of Directors meeting in Boca Raton.

(L-R) Jan Silverman (Sapphire Society), JNF South Palm Beach Board member; guest speaker Noa Zer, Director of Resource Development and Foreign Affairs for the Central Arava Regional Council; and Sydelle Lazar (President’s Society, Century Council, Sapphire Society) at a meeting at the home of Shelly Gross in Woodfield Country Club in Boca Raton.

(L-R) South Palm Beach Board President Michael Lazar (Century Council, President’s Society) and Sydelle Lazar (Century Council, President’s Society, Sapphire Society) at the 2012 JNF National Conference in Orlando.

(L-R) Shelley Goldstein (Century Council) and Long Island Board member Lea Ruskin (Century Council, President’s Society) at the Long Island Tree of LifeTM dinner.

(L-R) Marta Gucovsky and New York City Board member Ed Blank (World Chairman’s Council, Negev Society) at a Doctors for Israel Society lecture on the genetic history of the Jewish people at JNF House in New York City.

(L-R) Geri Shatz (Century Council, Sapphire Society); J. Lew Schepps (World Chairman’s Council, President’s Society); Geri Kory; keynote speaker Ehud Olmert, former Israeli Prime Minister; and Executive Director of Greater New York Michael Feinman at a reception to benefit the OR Movement’s and JNF’s work in the Negev.

(L-R) Century Council and Negev Society members Yvette and Maurice Bendahan at a reception to benefit the OR Movement’s and JNF’s work in the Negev.

Sheila Scharfman (Century Council, President’s Society, Sapphire Society) at the Women for Israel Society cocktail reception and private viewing of Israeli art at Sotheby’s in New York City.


(L-R) Long Island Board President and event Chair Michael Kessler (Negev Society), guest speaker Micah Halpern, and Long Island Board member and event chair Alan Chalup (Herzl Society) at the first annual Long Island breakfast. (L-R) Long Island Board member and event Chair Alan Chalup (Herzl Society), Long Island Board member Mark Engel (Century Council, President’s Society), Long Island Board President and event chair Michael Kessler (Negev Society), and Executive Director of Greater New York Michael Feinman at the first annual Long Island breakfast.


(L-R) Irene Levine and JNF National President-elect and New York Board member Jeffrey Levine (World Chairman’s Council, Negev Society) at JNF’s 2012 National Conference in Orlando.

(L-R) Northern New Jersey Board member Helen Levine (World Chairman’s Council, Negev Society, Sapphire Society), Northern New Jersey Director Jocelyn Inglis, JNF Chief Executive Officer Russell F. Robinson, and Northern New Jersey Board member Bob Levine (World Chairman’s Council, Negev Society) at a Northern New Jersey reception.


(L-R) JNF Chief Executive Officer Russell F. Robinson, Northern New Jersey Board member Jill Janowski (Herzl Society) and Seffi Janowski (Herzl Society) at a Northern New Jersey reception.

(L-R) Dr. Sharon Fried (Negev Society) and Northern New Jersey Board member Dr. Kenny Fried (Negev Society) at a Northern New Jersey reception.



(L-R) Lindsay Ashwal (Herzl Society) and Sheila Scharfman (Century Council, President’s Society, Sapphire Society) at the Women for Israel cocktail reception and private viewing of Israeli art at Sotheby’s in New York City.


(L-R) JNF Chief Planned Giving Officer Matt Bernstein, Arthur Radack (Century Council, President’s Society), Curt Spiegel (Negev Society), Trudy Sivick (President’s Society), Michele Morow (Century Council), David Gursky (World Chairman’s Council, Herzl Society), Vera Shoeing (World Chairman’s Council, Herzl Society), and LA Chairman of the Board David Frank (Century Council, President’s Society) at the second annual donor appreciation brunch in LA.

(L-R) Orna Delrahim (Sapphire Society), President of Manolo Blahnik George Malkemus, Judy Levin (World Chairman’s Council, Sapphire Society, Negev Society) and Co-Chair Esther Vered at a Saks Fifth Avenue event supporting JNF.

(L-R) KKL-JNF World Chairman Efi Stenlzer, Dalia Stenzler and hosts Lou and Marion Lipofsky (Century Council, President’s Society) at a major donor reception.

(L-R) Brian Chernof; Jill Lerner, Atlanta Co-President and Co-Chair of JNF’s Executive Forum; Alan Lubel, Atlanta Lawyers for Israel Society Chair; Beth Gluck, Southeast Regional Director; Lauren Mescon (Herzl Society); Gilad Erdan, Israeli Minister of Environmental Protection; Atlanta Co-President Matt Lieberman (Herzl Society); and Ronnie Porat, Israel Emissary to the Southeast, at JNF’s National Conference in Orlando.


JNF CEO Russell Robinson (center) joined Gregg and Michelle Philipson (Sapphire Society) in Austin for an Israeli dinner and update on JNF’s work in Israel. (Photo by Ginny B Photography)

(L-R) JNF Southwest Director Julie Malin, Gush Etzion Mayor Davidi Perl, and Felicia Rubin (Sapphire Society) enjoyed a lunch during the mayor’s tour of El Paso.

(L-R) Harold Peitzer, Director of the Gush Etzion Foundation Shani Abrams Simkowitz, Tanny Berg, Felicia Rubin (Sapphire Society), Gush Etzion Mayor Davidi Perl, and Barbara Berliner during the mayor’s tour of El Paso.

(L-R) Baltimore Board members Cary Besmanoff (Herzl Society), Makor member Ellen Rosenberg (Sapphire Society), Dr. Irving Taylor (Negev Society, World Chairman’s Council), and Suzie Levene (Sapphire Society), after a dinner reception highlighting the 45th anniversary of the reunification of Jerusalem in Maryland.

(L-R) Former Maryland Zone presidents Jonathan Fishman (President’s Society) and Steve Cohen at the installation of a new board president. (L-R) Dr. Irving Taylor (Negev Society, World Chairman’s Council), Development Officer for Israel Operations Ariel Kotler, and Harold Goetz (Negev Society) at a donor outreach parlor meeting in Baltimore featuring an update on JNF’s work in Israel.

(L-R) Makor member Jeff Menick (President’s Society), Lori Dym, and Kampelman Society Co-Chair and Makor member Gary Kushner (President’s Society) enjoyed a Kampelman Society dessert reception.




The Fishman family (Century Council) proudly stood outside a school in Jerusalem where they dedicated a rainwater harvesting program. (L-R) D.C. Regional Director Stuart DiamantCohen, outgoing Maryland President Jonathan Fishman (President’s Society), Mid-Atlantic Zone President Baruch Fellner (Negev Society, Century Council), Ken Krupsky (President’s Society), Makor member Dr. Chet Stein (Century Council, President’s Society), and Delaware President and Makor member Joel Friedlander (President’s Society) at a Zone leadership meeting at the home of Jonathan Fishman.

(L-R) Makor member Dr. Chet Stein (Century Council, President’s Society), Ken Krupsky (President’s Society), Makor member Ira Bartfield (President’s Society), Makor member Joel Friedlander (President’s Society), National Campaign Director Diane Scar (Sapphire Society), Makor member Baruch Fellner (Century Council), Frank Spector (Herzl Society), Makor member Gary Kushner (President’s Society), and Jonathan Fishman (President’s Society, Herzl Society) at a Mid-Atlantic leadership brunch at the home of Jonathan Fishman.

(L-R) National Campaign Director Diane Scar (Sapphire Society), Mark Wolkow, Jayne Klein (World Chairman’s Council, Circle of Sapphire), Andy Klein (World Chairman’s Council, President’s Society), and Cliff Faber (Herzl Society) at a new donor outreach event during Sukkot at the home of Andy and Jayne Klein. (L-R) Makor member Jeff Menick (President’s Society), Gary Lieber (Herzl Society), Makor member Gary Kushner (President’s Society), Cary Feldman (Herzl Society), and former Jerusalem Post Editor Amotz Asa-El at a Kampelman Society evening forum in D.C.


Sapphire Society Co-Chairs Gail Kushner (left) (President’s Society) and Debra Moser pinned Mimi Kress (center) as she recommitted to her Sapphire membership for the 2013 campaign.

(L-R) Chicago Board member Dr. Howard Freedberg (Herzl Society), his son Brett, and Beth Cherner, JNF Midwest Executive Director.

Sapphire Society Co-Chairs Debra Moser (left) and Gail Kushner (President’s Society) thanked guest speaker Elana Drell-Szyfer, CEO of Ahava North America (center), after Women for Israel kickoff event in D.C.

30 (L-R) Event Co-Chairs Rob Rubin and Annette Lidawer (Century Council, Negev Society), Allison Rubin, Didi Almog, Tree of Life™ honoree Major General (Res.) Doron Almog, and Matthew Rubin.

(L-R) Nina Paul (Circle of Sapphire), National Vice President of JNF’s Women for Israel Society Campaign; Susie Fishbein, renowned kosher cook and author; and Beatrice Rosedale (Sapphire Society) at the Cincinnati Sapphire Society kosher cooking (L-R) JNF CEO Russell Robinson, The Honorable demonstration. Susan J. Dlott (World Chairman’s Council, Negev Society, Circle of Sapphire), JNF National (L-R) Chicago Board President Scott Gendell and wife Lisa Gendell (Century President Stanley Chesley (World Chairman’s Council) with Master of Ceremonies Paul Council, Negev Society), Sol Lizerbram Reiser at the Chicago Tree of Life™ award (Century Council, President’s Society), and dinner. Marci Robinson (Century Council, President’s Society, Sapphire Society) enjoyed the major donor event at the 2012 National Conference.

Judy Lucas (President’s Society, Sapphire Society) of Cincinnati visited LOTEM, a Sapphire Society project, on the President’s Society mission. (L-R, front row) Helen Levine, Judi Elovitz Greenberg, Francine Golden, Judy Lucas, Cookie Sieger, Kathy Bartfield, Robin Kafenshtok, Sheryl Buchholtz, and Ferne Avery. (L-R, back row) Pat Blank, Vivian Grossman, Sheila Scharfman, and Elisa Frankel.

(L-R, seated) Claire Komisar (Sapphire Society) and Mort Komisar (Herzl Society). (L-R, standing) Marty Komisar (Century Council, President’s Society) and Randi Schachter (Sapphire Society) enjoyed the Wisconsin annual tribute banquet.

(L-R) Marci Robinson (Century Council, President’s Society, Sapphire Society), Central New Jersey Board member Doris Leibowitz (Century Council), Executive Director of Central New Jersey Joel Leibowitz (Century Council), and Elliott Leibowitz (Century Council, President’s Society) at a major donor thank you reception at the home of Jody and Elliot Leibowitz in Morristown, NJ.

Honorary Chairs Saul and Bernice Gottlieb (Century Council) at the 2012 Cleveland Tree of Life™ award dinner. (L-R) Dr. Marvin Lauwasser and Marlene Lauwasser, Wisconsin Board Co-President Rusti Moffic (Sapphire Society), guest speaker and sustainability analyst Andy Stein, Wisconsin Board Co-President Enid Bootzin Berkovits, and Wisconsin Director Sidney Rivkin at a campaign parlor meeting hosted by the Lauwassers.


(L-R) Wisconsin Director Sidney Rivkin, Board Co-President Rusti Moffic (Sapphire Society), Board Co-Chair Selma Zeiger (Sapphire Society), Development Officer for JNF Israel Operations Ariel Kotler, Board Co-Chair Richard Marcus, and Board Co-President Enid Bootzin Berkovits at the Wisconsin annual tribute banquet.

(L-R) Jody Leibowitz (Century Council, President’s Society, Sapphire Society) and Elliot Leibowitz (Century Council, President’s Society) at a major donor thank you reception at the home of Jody and Elliot Leibowitz in Morristown, NJ.

(L-R) Central New Jersey Board member Phillip Brodie (President’s Society) and Central New Jersey Board President Mark Rattner (Century Council, President’s Society) at a major donor thank you reception at the home of Jody and Elliot Leibowitz in Morristown, NJ.

(L-R) Andrea Barsky (Herzl Society), Shira Woronoff (Herzl Society), Susan Schwartz, and Julie Gubernick (Sapphire Society) at the Philadelphia Board installation where Iron Chef Jose Garces performed a cooking demonstration.

(L-R) Anna Boni (Herzl Society), Philadelphia Board Vice President Michael Boni (Herzl Society), Iron Chef Jose Garces, and Renee Zuritsky (Century Council).

Detroit Doctors for Israel Society dinner honoree Dr. Mel Lester (President’s Society) and Doreen Hermelin (President’s Society) visited the Central Arava Medical Center. (L-R) Noa Zer, Director of Resource Development for the Central Arava Regional Council; Doreen Hermelin; Dr. Mel Lester; and Ariel Kotler, Development Officer for JNF Israel Operations. (L-R) Northern Ohio Board member Ken Liffman (Herzl Society), Tree of Life™ honoree Chuck Whitehill (President’s Society), and Rabbi Hal and Erica RudinLuria at the 2012 Cleveland Tree of Life™ award dinner.

(L-R) Newly installed Circle of Sapphire member Tobe Amsterdam and National Chair of the Women for Israel Society Campaign Louise Dabrow (Sapphire Society) at the Philadelphia Board installation. (L-R) Helene Blumenfeld (Sapphire Society) and Dr. Dan Gottlieb at a parlor meeting at the Gottlieb home.


My New Normal–A Semester at AMHSI I’VE BEEN IN ISRAEL for a month now—a month

surrounding me, and I came out of the experience with a more deep-rooted sense of myself as a Jew. At AMHSI, we are not always traveling around. We also spend many days here on campus where we rotate




April 2013



Summer I 2013



Summer II 2013



Fall 2013



December 2013



Eight-week, six-week and semester sessions available. Call 800.327.5980 or visit

31 Give a Teen the Experience of a Lifetime! Become an AMHSI Ambassador

through our core program, as well as our high school subjects. Some students here call these our “typical” days, but really no day here in the Negev is typical. Every day is a new adventure waiting for us to absorb. We are like sponges who have come to Israel to soak it up with eagerness and enthusiasm. I never imagined a high school experience could introduce and expose me to so many new and amazing things on a weekly, daily, and hourly basis, but this program has done so beyond my wildest dreams. I have had experiences just as stimulating and meaningful during my classroom days as I have on days traveling the country—and that is what makes this semester program so special. n

Now you can take an important part in promoting and strengthening lifelong bonds between youth and Israel... and win cool prizes along the way! Anyone can become an Ambassador! Just follow these easy steps:


Sign up to become an ambassador at

2 3

Refer potential candidates for AMHSI programs simply by entering some quick information (name, phone, email, etc.)

43 3 4 4 5

* Two points = $200 gift card! * Three points = brand new iPad or $500 gift card * Four points = $800 gift card! * Five points = round trip ticket to Israel! (NYC->TLV)

AMHSI will contact your referrals Each referral that participates on any 6-week, 8-week or Semester program, grants you one AMHSI Ambassador Point! Sit back and enjoy your great gifts!

How else can you help promote AMHSI? Tweet this message: Spend part of your high school sophomore, junior or senior year in Israel on any of @AMHSI's 6 week, 8 week or semester programs Friend us on facebook and share the information on your personal newsfeed! Already have a timeline? Why not mention your AMHSI experience on it?!

Please contact us for any questions about the program T: 1.800.327.5980

*Subject to Campaign Rules & Regulations

and a day, to be exact. And yes, that one day does matter, because each day here is a new adventure. I felt it long before I boarded the plane one month ago, surrounded by new people, a new language, and headed to a new home. Any given day here, the experiences I have can be summed up by this adjective—new. Traveling to a new place, learning a new Hebrew word, or making a new friend. “New” has become my new normal. What I didn’t expect was how much my semester experience here at AMHSI’s Negev campus at Eshel HaNassi would open my eyes to new things. I had never been to Israel before this program, so I knew that our trips off-campus would be filled with wonder and awe. The program has met and exceeded my expectations in this category. Every place we’ve traveled to has deeply influenced me in the most positive way possible, opening my eyes to an improved view of the world. After spending Yom Kippur in Jerusalem, I can say without a doubt that I had the best Jewish holiday experience I’ve ever had in my life. I found sincere meaning and beauty in the holiday, the culture, and the people

by Arielle Rawlings


AMHSI promotes, builds, and strengthens lifelong bonds between youth and Israel through the study of the history and culture of the people of Israel. AMHSI is a premier academic experience in Israel that prepares students for college and beyond. Since its founding in 1972, AMHSI has successfully impacted over 20,000 students. To learn more, visit or call 800.327.5980.


THIS IS THE KOTEL. One of the holiest sites in the holiest city in the world. Jerusalem. Nowhere else on earth can you feel your spiritual connection to a land, to being home. Come experience the spirit of Israel’s people and the beauty of its land, where thousands of years of history and fascinating archaeological sites await you. Visit Israel. A place different than any other.


Plan a trip with your family, your synagogue, or JNF. Just go. Send a message to the world that you stand with Israel. Sign up today at Upcoming JNF trips:

ISRAEL @ 65: INDEPENDENCE DAY MISSION • APRIL 11 - 18, 2013 Follow the path towards Israel’s independence and walk in the footsteps of Israel’s pioneers as you celebrate the 65th anniversary of the State of Israel.

SUNSHINE MISSION: FOR ACTIVE ADULTS 55+ • APRIL 21 - 30, 2013 Experience a unique 10-day excursion through Israel as you tour the country from the north to the Negev Desert.

QUEEN OF SHEBA: WOMEN FOR ISRAEL MISSION • OCTOBER 13 - 20, 2013 This is a once-in-a-lifetime experience; a unique and unforgettable trip to Israel for women only—no husbands, no boyfriends—just women, experiencing Israel through the eyes of our Israeli sisters.

To register for one of these unique tours of Israel or for more information, contact 877.JNF.TOUR (563.8687) or visit

B'Yachad Winter 2013: Israel@65  
B'Yachad Winter 2013: Israel@65  

A History of Innovation, Spirit and Wonder