Advisory Council


The IsraAID Advisory Board is made up of experienced professionals, each with a high level of expertise in his or her respected field, that guide and advise the organization during each stage of project development - from needs assessment and program planning, to implementation, monitoring, and evaluation. 

Israel

  • Mariko Tsujita

    Pastor, Lecturer

    For 25 years Mariko was a professor in Asian Studies at the Hebrew University in Jerusalem and at Doshisha University in Japan. In 2008 she received the Israeli Foreign Ministry's Commendation award for her contribution to developing Israeli-Japanese ties. Today, Mariko is a pastor for Beit Shalom congregations in Japan.

  • Rachel A. Cohen, PhD

    Clinical Psychologist

    Dr. Cohen has been in clinical practice for over 30 years, and specializes in psycho-social support to survivors of trauma, an area which has taken her to half dozen countries in the developing world. Dr. Cohen has been in clinical practice for over 30 years. Currently based in Geneva, she has recently developed and piloted an innovative program for survivors of gender based violence called “Common Threads,” which integrates best practices from current psychotherapy and art therapy with cultural traditions of women’s textile making groups.

  • Shlomit Bresler, PHD

    Bibliotherapist, Psychotherapist, and Group facilitator

    Currently residing in Israel, Dr. Bresler is the Head of the Bibliotherapy training program (M.A.) at the Seminar Hakibbutzim Colleg, in Tel Aviv. In addition to this, she is also a group facilitator working with social workers from the Israeli Ministry of Defense, a teacher at Haifa University in Bibliotherapy, and a psychotherapist with her own private practice.

  • Sheri Oz

    Family Therapist, Expert in Sexual Trauma

    Currently retired and living in Haifa, Sheri Oz has over 25 years experience in Israel conducting individual, couples and family therapy concerning sexual trauma issues. She has also consulted for government, educational, kibbutz and community organizations around sexual abuse and sexual offences, and was the founder and director of a private clinic for the systemic treatment of sexual abuse and sexual trauma from 1999 until 2010.

  • Moti Harari

    Plant Genetics, Arava R&D

    Moti Harari, a native of Israel's southern Arava region and recipient of the 1972 Histadrut award for young researchers, has spent the last 49 years designing and implementing agriculture projects in over 16 countries in Africa, Asia, and South America. As well he is a researcher at the southern Arava R&D where he guides research on crops and cropping systems suitable for extreme desert conditions.

  • Prof. Rachel Lev-Wiesel

    Professor and School Chairwoman

    Prof. Lev-Wiesel is a professor and the chairwoman of the Graduate School of Creative Arts Therapies at the University of Haifa. She has published more than one hundred scientific articles as well as six books on issues such as the use of drawings for diagnostic and therapeutic purposes, long term effects of the Holocaust, intergenerational transmission of trauma, and child sexual abuse. Prof. Lev-Wiesel is an experienced therapist, licensed family therapist and clinical supervisor.

  • Tammy Bar-On

    Art Therapist, Lecturer

    Tammy Bar-On is a registered art therapist and teaches at the Graduate School of Creative Arts Therapies at the University of Haifa. She helped create the Art Therapy Division program and was its head from 2008-2013. She has taught various courses in art therapy in a number of institutions in Israel. Dr. Bar-On works as an art therapist with a variety of populations, specializing in therapy with adolescents. She is a proud mother and grandmother.

  • Prof. Amia Lieblich

    Psychologist, Writer, Lecturer

    Prof. Amia Lieblich is a psychologist, a writer and a well-known authority in qualitative research and narrative psychology. She is emerita of the Hebrew University of Jerusalem, and presently the President of The Academic College of Society and the Arts. She taught courses on life-story research in the USA, Europe and India. Her book about the Israeli kibbutz was translated to Japanese.

  • Prof Ariella Friedman

    Psychologist, Social Worker

    Prof. Ariella Friedman has been an associate professor at Tel-Aviv University, Department of Psychology and school of Social Work for over 35 years. She specializes in Gender and the Psychology of Women, group relations, and group dynamics. Prof. Ariella is also the head of the department of behavioral sciences and the arts, at the Academic College of Society and Arts. Finally, she has also been the head of the department of Behavioral Science in Zefat Academic College for the past 3 years, leading the overall college program in multiculturalism and diversity.

U.S.

  • Lisa Gurwitch

    US Advisory Council Member

    Lisa D. Gurwitch is the President and CEO of Delivering Good, a nonprofit organization that unites retailers, manufacturers, foundations and individuals to provide people impacted by poverty and tragedy with new merchandise, effectively distributed through a network of agency partners to improve the well-being, self-esteem and dignity of at-risk children, families, and individuals.

    Since 1985, over $1.8 billion of donated product has been distributed through the Delivering Good network of community partners. Ms. Gurwitch assumed her role in 2015 and brings a passion for addressing unmet community needs. Her past professional experience includes serving as Senior Vice President, Institutional Advancement/External Relations, for World Learning, a global platform for education, exchange, and development programs that advance leadership. She also enjoyed an 18-year tenure in various roles at the Jewish Community Federation and Endowment Fund of San Francisco, the Peninsula, Marin and Sonoma Counties, including as the Endowment Fund’s executive director. Gurwitch previously practiced law in San Francisco and Chicago, where she specialized in commercial real estate and financial transactions. She holds a JD from George Washington University Law School, a BA in economics from Vanderbilt University, and is a graduate of the Wexner Heritage and Mandel Executive Development Programs. In addition to the Delivering Good board, she also serves on the board of Hostelling International USA and the investment committee of Adas Israel Congregation, Washington, DC. She is based in New York City.

  • Greg Milne

    US Advisory Council Member

    Gregory Milne is the chief impact and foreign policy officer at the Clinton Foundation.

    In this role, he oversees the Foundation's efforts on programmatic impact and evaluation, metrics, and information sharing; he also helps guide international strategy and plays a central role in shaping and executing President Clinton's foreign policy vision for the Foundation. Previously, he served as the deputy chief of staff and director of policy to President Clinton and chief executive office of the Clinton Foundation’s Haiti program. Prior to that he worked as the private sector advisor at the UN Office of the Special Envoy for Haiti, President Clinton’s UN office, assisting with economic development and reconstruction programs in Haiti. Before joining the Clinton Foundation, he was a senior associate at Shearman & Sterling, LLP in the New York Office where he specialized in international property transactions and mergers and acquisitions. Greg received his J.D. from Fordham University School of Law where he was a Crowley Scholar and a bachelor's from the University of Michigan. He is also an adjunct professor at Fordham Law School.

  • Doron Krakow

    US Advisory Council Member

    Doron Krakow is President and CEO of the JCC Association of North America.

    Doron has more than two decades working in national and international Jewish organizations, with a strong background in fundraising, youth movement work and Israel engagement.

  • Elizabeth Ashbourne

    Executive Director of PQMD

    As Executive Director of PQMD, Elizabeth (EJ) Ashbourne is responsible for furthering PQMD’s commitment to championing and advancing standards in medical supply and service donations by developing the vision, strategy, and execution of the organizations five pillars of work.

    Prior to joining PQMD, EJ was most recently the Managing Partner for EJA Consulting, a small private firm specializing in strategic planning, fundraising, international development and joint venture support, mission driven event management, and all aspects of non-profit turn-around. Prior to that, EJ spent 17 years at the World Bank in a number of senior level positions, in the areas of private sector partnerships, global public health, infectious disease, and health management information systems. Additionally she was a senior operations officer in the Office of Corporate Reform and Human Resources. In the area of health, EJ held the position of Lead, Global Health Information Programs for the World Bank and the Health Metrics Network at the World Health Organization; led the work on eHealth and mHealth in the Health Anchor of the Bank, and contributed to research on a common metric for donor agencies, development partners and countries to measure their investment in health information. At the World Bank, she also spent many years working closely on issues specific to engaging the private sector in the fight against HIV/AIDS as the focal point for private sector partnerships with the World Bank’s Africa Region HIV/AIDS programs. Her role was to develop and implement the mechanisms through which the private sector can access financial and technical resources from the Bank’s initial 2billion dollar investment in HIV/AIDS. She has also worked for World Learning as a Country Director, overseeing a wide range of USAID capacity building programs in Eastern Europe and served as senior coordinator for international cooperative education programs at American University among other positions. EJ holds an MA in International Education, with an emphasis on Organizational Management from American University in Washington, DC and a BSc in Communications and History from Ithaca College, Ithaca, NY.

  • Danielle Foreman

    Director of Programs, Koret Foundation

    Danielle joined Koret in 2010. She currently serves as the director of programs, overseeing the program team and working closely with the staff and board to advance the Foundation’s grantmaking priorities. She also collaborates with the CEO and the director of finance on Foundation operations and planning. Danielle originally joined Koret as a program officer for the Jewish community grant portfolio, which she continues to manage.

    Since 2015, Danielle has also independently consulted with high net worth individuals who want to leverage their new wealth to impact the community. Danielle assists her clients with mission development, strategic planning, and communication. Danielle’s previous experience includes both the public and private sectors. While still in graduate school, she conducted program evaluations for the New York City Department of Education. Back in the Bay Area, she worked as a political media and strategy consultant at Terris Barnes and Walters. She is also a graduate of Leadership San Francisco. Danielle holds an M.P.A. in Public and Non-Profit Management and Policy from New York University’s Robert F. Wagner School for Public Service. She received her undergraduate degree from the University of Southern California’s Annenberg School for Communication, where she minored in international relations and photography. Danielle is a member of the Contemporaries committee at the Contemporary Jewish Museum in San Francisco. She is a past board member of Slingshot, a national organization that fosters innovation in Jewish life. Danielle, a native of the Bay Area, grew up in Marin County. She and her husband live in San Francisco with their twin sons, Zachary and Noah. Danielle enjoys downhill skiing, almost anything outdoors, travel, photography, and art.

  • Erin Schrode

    Activist, activist and social entrepreneur

    Erin Schrode is a citizen activist, social entrepreneur and storyteller. Since co-founding Turning Green in 2005, she has developed eco education and action platforms to inspire, educate, and mobilize millions of students and the global public with this non-profit and beyond. This leading voice on millennials, sustainability and social impact and vocal advocate for environmental action, public health and equal justice recently ran an unprecedented campaign for US Congress in California’s District 2 – working to redefine civic engagement, reinvigorate public service, and expand the definition of politician for a generation and a nation.

      A passionate writer and orator, Erin is on air with ABC News for the election season, speaks internationally, lectures at universities, and consults with corporations, governments and organizations – including IKEA, the US State Department, Apple, The Coca-Cola Company, Nestlé, Unilever, Chipotle, United Nations and more – on generational trends, responsible consumption, behavior change and purpose to drive positive impact and better business. She writes for Cosmopolitan Magazine, Refinery29 and Fusion, among others. Honoring her commitment to lead through action, The White House called Erin “a dynamic, passionate and ambitious young woman committed to creating big change everywhere she goes.”   For nearly a decade, Erin has been featured in and tapped as an expert for the New York Times, CNN, Vanity Fair, San Francisco Chronicle, New York Post, Seventeen Magazine, Teen Vogue, National Geographic, ABC, NBC, BBC, FOX, Glamour, Forbes, Discovery, E!, The Huffington Post, OK! Magazine, AOL, Mic, Sundance, HelloGiggles, GOOD, Slate, in various books, publications, and other mediaoutlets, as well as her own blog, Twitter, Instagram, Facebook, and Snapchat. CNN profiled Erin as a Green Pioneer, one of six “leading lights in the environmental movement: a role model for young environmentalists [who] inspires others to follow in her footsteps;” Participant Media elected her one of ten Inspiring Climate Leaders alongside Al Gore, Bill McKibben, and global luminaries; Refinery29 selected Erin for its 29 Under 29; and OK! Magazine named her America’s Green Girl.   The “internationally recognized speaker and leader among next generation social entrepreneurs” hosts events, conferences, and digital programs with diverse stakeholders for broad audiences. Erin has worn many hats: brand ambassador for IKEA and will.i.am's EKOCYCLE, spokesperson for leading organic brand Nature’s Path, face of Seventh Generation personal care line, advisory board member for Myspace, Intel, Run for America and Mobile Kitchen Classroom, lead witness before California congress and DC lobbyist, creator of a green skincare collection with Whole Foods Market nationwide, “eco-activist-cum-runway-model” in New York Fashion Week, and collaborator with top designers on ethical lines.   "One of the leading young green movers in the country," Erin addresses influential global leaders at forums like The White House Summit on Environmental Education, Mashable / UN Foundation Social Good Summit, Wanderlust, World 50, Sustainable Brands, and One Young World where she serves as US Ambassador. Erin was elected to a delegation at the UN Commission on Sustainable Development, named a Young Challenger at Nobel Laureate Yunus’ Global Social Business Summit, honored with the Diller Tikkun Olam Award for outstanding leadership in community service and commitment to improve the world, and given the Natural Products Innovator Award. She proudly serves on the Board of Directors for the Captain Planet Foundation and Zioness and advisory boards of Kiss the Ground, IsraAID, and Ten Strands.   After working in disaster response in Haiti, she founded and launched The Schoolbag, a youth education project to provide tools and materials for students in need, as well as initiate active citizenry and environmental stewardship. The program reached over 30,000 students in Haiti, in addition to deliveries in East Timor and South Africa. This community organizer champions civic leadership, conscious living, and environmental stewardship worldwide – writing curriculum for an eco center for Palestinian, Israeli, and Jordanian students, developing recycling infrastructure in Ghana, and elevating stories of Syrian, Iraqi and Afghan refugees in the Mediterranean and Native Americans at Standing Rock while working in solidarity on the ground. Since Hurricane Maria, Erin has led #ChefsForPuertoRico as COO of the largest feeding program in Puerto Rico — that was named one of Fast Company’s most innovative companies and for which founder Chef José Andrés was just nominated for the Nobel Peace Prize — serving over 3.7 million meals to American citizens in need and now investing in local, sustainable agriculture and food systems islandwide.   She is a graduate of New York University as a DEANS Scholar – spending terms abroad in the Middle East, West Africa, South America, and Europe – with a degree in Social and Cultural Analysis and 2019 Alumni of the Year. From her hometown in Marin County, California to New York City to eighty nations around the globe, Erin is on a lifelong journey to inspire and mobilize people to discover and activate passion for social impact and policy change — that ensures a just, safe, thriving world for future generations. 

  • Rabbi Josh Weinberg

    Vice President of the URJ for Israel and Reform Zionism

    Rabbi Josh Weinberg serves as the Vice President of the URJ for Israel and Reform Zionism and is the Executive Director of ARZA, the Association of Reform Zionists of America. He was ordained from the HUC-JIR Israeli Rabbinic Program in Jerusalem, and is currently living in New York.  Josh previously served as the Director of the Israel program for the Reconstructionist Rabbinical College and as a faculty member of NFTY-EIE High School in Israel teaching Jewish History. Josh is a reserve officer in the IDF spokesperson’s unit, has hiked the Israel-trail, and came on Aliyah to Israel in 2003.

    Originally from Chicago, he has a B.A. from University of Wisconsin in Hebrew Literature, Political Science and International Relations, and an M.A. at the Hebrew University in Jewish Education.   Josh has taught and lectured widely throughout Israel, the U.S. and Europe, as well as on Kivunim and Shnat Netzer gap-year programs.  He has led numerous tours and trained tour educators for the Reform movement’s Israel experiences. In addition to being a STorahtelling “Mayven,” Josh has a passion for the environment and spends lots of time outdoors hiking and climbing, playing music and volleyball. Josh is passionate about anything connected to Israel and hopes to strengthen the connection between the Reform movement and the Jewish State. He is married to Mara Sheftel Getz, and is the proud abba of Noa, Ella, Mia, and Alma.

  • Eric Savitz

    US Advisory Council Member

    Eric Savitz is senior director of corporate communications at Roku Inc., in Los Gatos,California. He was previously a partner in the San Francisco office of Brunswick Group, a London-based corporate communications firm. Eric’s work includes IPO, M&A and activism defense projects; litigation, cyber breach and crisis communications; media relations, media training and writing assignments.

    Eric spent 29 years as a reporter, columnist, blogger and editor, focused on investing, technology and Silicon Valley. Most recently, he was San Francisco Bureau Chief for Forbes. He also previously wrote and edited for Barron’s, The Industry Standard, Smart Money and Dow Jones News Service. Eric has a BA in Economics from the University of Pennsylvania, where he was managing editor of The Daily Pennsylvanian. A resident of Palo Alto, and a member of the board of Congregation Etz Chayim, he and his wife Robyn Stanton have three children.

  • Larry Tobin

    US Advisory Council Member

    Larry Tobin is the Director of The Shapiro Foundation, a Boston-based foundation particularly focused on the plight of refugees across the globe.

    The Shapiro Foundation spearheaded local-resettlement efforts in the US & Canada, worked to alleviate the suffering of refugees and asylum-seekers in Greece & Israel, and have invested significantly to ensure that every individuals' journey is a safe one. Beyond their work with refugees, they also invest heavily in public health, education & basic human rights in The US, Israel, Rwanda, Liberia, Greece and Canada.

  • Kurt Schwartz

    US Advisory Council Member

    Kurt Schwartz has served since 2010 as the Director of the Massachusetts Emergency Management Agency, which is state agency that operates the State Emergency Operations Center, coordinates the state’s response to disasters, and is responsible for ensuring the state’s preparedness to withstand, respond to, and recover from all types of emergencies and disasters.

    Mr. Schwartz has managed the state’s response to, and recovery from presidentially declared disasters resulting from floods, tornadoes, blizzards and severe winter storms, hurricanes, a massive water system failure that disrupted potable water supplies to three million people, the 2013 terrorist attack on the Boston Marathon, and the 2015 record-breaking winter storms that dropped 9’ of snow in central and eastern Massachusetts in three weeks. Mr. Schwartz served in the state’s Executive Office of Public Safety and Security as the state’s Undersecretary for Homeland Security and Governor’s Homeland Security Advisor from 2010 to 2015, and as the Undersecretary for Law Enforcement from 2007 to 2010.

  • Gidi Grinstein

    US Advisory Council Member

    Gidi Grinstein is the founder of the Reut Institute, Israel’s leading non-governmental research, strategy and leadership group, and President of American Friends of the Reut Institute.

  • Amy Rosenblatt Lui

    US Advisory Council Member

    Amy Rosenblatt Lui is a Philanthropic Advisor with over 30 years of strategic foundation and development experience.

    Currently she is Executive Director of three Family Foundations – the Beverly Foundation, the Fingerhut Family Foundation and the Ronald Fingerhut Family Foundation. Amy is active as a volunteer in the community and she lives in Minnetonka with her husband and teenage son.

  • Colin Price

    US Advisory Council Member

    Prof. Colin Price is a Professor in the Department of Geosciences at Tel Aviv University, and the Head of the Porters School of Environmental Studies. He is a world known Atmospheric Physicist, specializing in the Earth's weather and climate, with a focus on thunderstorms, climate change and natural hazards.

    He was born in Johannesburg, South Africa, in 1962. After starting his university studies in South Africa, he transferred to Tel Aviv University in 1982 where he completed his B.Sc. and M.Sc. degrees in Geophysics and Atmospheric Sciences. He received his Ph.D. at Columbia University, New York, in 1993, while working at NASA's Goddard Institute for Space Studies in New York. After completing a postdoctoral fellowship at the Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory in California, he returned to Israel and joined the faculty of Tel Aviv University in 1995. He has published more than 130 scientific papers, and has a team of 10 graduate students and researchers working under his guidance on various scientific research projects.

  • Sally Oren

    US Advisory Council Member

    Sally Oren first became involved with IsraAID as Goodwill Ambassador and Spokesperson in 2012, when her former husband Michael Oren was serving as Israel's Ambassador to the United States.

    Sally Oren is a native of San Francisco, and a graduate of UC Berkeley with a BA in Near Eastern Studies and Dance. She moved to Israel in 1982 where she met her former husband, Michael Oren. She taught dance in Jerusalem and throughout the southern region of Israel. Returning to Jerusalem after 5 years in the Negev, she worked as a writer and editor at the Center for Jewish Art, at the Hebrew University. Sally later worked at Taglit-Birthright Israel, where she served as the assistant to the director and as a liaison for communities outside of North America. She also taught T'ai Chi to wounded soldiers and veterans in Jerusalem. When Michael Oren was named Israel’s ambassador to the United States in 2009, Sally became Madame Ambassador, in charge of managing a busy social, educational, and philanthropic schedule. In addition to hosting numerous high-level events at the Ambassador’s Residence, she represented Israel at major events at foreign embassies, in the Supreme Court and the Library of Congress, and at the White House. As Ambassador’s wife she was voted President of International Club #1, which brings together the wives of ambassadors, legislators, Cabinet members, Supreme Court Justices, and prominent journalists. She was the first Israeli ever elected to such a position. During her tenure in Washington Sally became involved in IsraAID for which she has volunteered since 2012 as Goodwill Ambassador and spokesperson. She was in Japan after the earthquake and tsunami, and later in the Philippines and Nepal. Most recently she has worked with refugees in Jordan, Greece and Berlin. She also became involved in women’s health, currently sitting on the advisory board of the Linda Joy Pollin Cardiovascular Wellness Center for Women at Hadassah Hospital, where she also served as the first president of Hadassah International Israel. In addition she is on the Community Council of the Batsheva Dance Company. Sally has 3 children and four grandchildren.

  • Adrienne Matros

    US Advisory Council Member

    Adrienne Matros is a licensed Clinical Psychologist with over 30 years' experience in the health care industry.

    Adrienne currently serves on 5 non-profit boards including; Children’s Hospital Orange County (CHOC), Merage JCC, JCCA, Aleh-Negev (Israel) and TLC (Tilly’s Life Center). She serves on several Advisory and Advocacy committees that include Samueli Academy, Jewish Federation and Family Services and CHOC’s Mental Health Advocacy Committee. For the past 10 years, she has been a Team Leader and chaperone planning and coordinating teen trips to numerous countries working with NGO’s and indigenous people to assist in creating self sustaining communities. Adrienne resides with her family in Orange County, California.

  • Erik Ludwig

    US Advisory Council Member

    Erik Ludwig, Ph.D., serves as Director of the Zelikow School of Jewish Nonprofit Management at HUC-JIR/Los Angeles.

    His executive experience spans the Jewish nonprofit field and has focused on developing Jewish startups and spearheading innovation within traditional institutions. Ludwig earned his Ph.D. in Education, Culture and Society from the University of Utah in 2018. Erik’s research interests include race in education, caring teacher-student relationships, and the effect of school structure on academic achievement. Ludwig received his M.A. from Humboldt State University and his B.S. from University of Utah.

  • Stephanie Kramer

    US Interfaith Council Member

    Stephanie Kramer is the Associate Rabbi at Congregation Shomrei Torah in Santa Rosa CA, where she has served since July 2011.

  • David Gelfand

    US Interfaith Council Member

    David Gelfand is the Senior Rabbi at Temple Israel of the City of New York.