Elliott Abrams is senior fellow for Middle Eastern Studies at the Council on Foreign Relations in Washington, D.C. He served as deputy assistant to the president and deputy national security adviser in the administration of President George W. Bush, where he supervised U.S. policy in the Middle East for the White House.
Mr. Abrams joined the Bush administration in June 2001 as special assistant to the president and senior director of the NSC for democracy, human rights, and international organizations. From December 2002 to February 2005, he served as special assistant to the president and senior director of the National Security Council for Near East and North African affairs. He served as deputy assistant to the president and deputy national security adviser for global democracy strategy from February 2005 to January 2009, and in that capacity supervised both the Near East and North African Affairs and the Democracy, Human rights, and International organizations directorates of the NSC.
Mr. Abrams was president of the Ethics and Public Policy Center in Washington, D.C., from 1996 until joining the White House staff. He was a member of the United States Commission on International Religious Freedom from 1999 to 2001 and chairman of the commission in the latter year, and in 2012 was reappointed to membership for another term. Mr. Abrams is also a member of the U.S. Holocaust Memorial Council, which directs the activities of the U.S. Holocaust Memorial Museum. He teaches U.S. foreign policy at Georgetown University’s School of Foreign Service.
Earlier in his carrer, Mr. Abrams spent four years working for the United States Senate: as Assistant Counsel to the Senate Permanent Subcommittee on Investigations in 1975; as Special Counsel to Senator Henry M. Jackson in 1975-1976; and as Special Counsel and then Chief of Staff to Senator Daniel P. Moynihan from January 1977 to June 1979. Mr. Abrams served in the State Department during all eight years of the Reagan Administration. In January 1981, Mr. Abrams became Assistant Secretary of State for International Organization Affairs. In this capacity he supervised United States participation in the United Nations System. In December 1981, he was sworn in as Assistant Secretary of State for Human Rights and Humanitarian Affairs. In July 1985, Mr. Abrams was appointed Assistant Secretary of State for Inter-American Affairs, where he supervised US policy in Latin America and the Caribbean. In 1988, Mr. Abrams received the Secretary of State’s Distinguished Service Award from Secretary George P. Shultz for his work in the Department.
Mr. Abrams was educated at Harvard College, the London School of Economics, and Harvard Law School. His articles and book reviews have appeared in Commentary, the Weekly Standard, The National Interest, The Public Interest, and National Review. He is the author of four books, Undue Process (1993), Security and Sacrifice (1995), Faith or Fear: How Jews Can Survive in a Christian America (1997), and the recently released Tested by Zion: the Bush Administration and the Israeli-Palestinian Conflict (2013); and the editor of three more, Close Calls: Intervention, Terrorism, Missile Defense and “Just War” Today; Honor Among Nations: Intangible Interests and Foreign Policy; and The Influence of Faith: Religion and American Foreign Policy. He appears regularly on CNN, Fox, and other major television news networks.
Mr. Abrams was born in New York City. He and his wife Rachel live in Virginia. They have three children.
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Wendy Fisher is President of Solomon R. Guggenheim Foundation. Wendy, a trained clinical psychologist, noted philanthropist and artist, is engaged with cultural institutions around the world and a life-long supporter of the arts. She divides her time between New York, London, and South Africa where she was born. Fisher was a facilitator and a resource for the Young Presidents’ Organization (YPO) and President of the Kirsh Charitable Foundation. She also founded A4 Arts Foundation, a project space in Cape Town dedicated to widening access to the arts in Southern Africa. Fisher is also the founder of Lockdown University, an online education platform bringing world class experts focused on Jewish history, arts, culture, and current affairs to a community of over 5000 members around the globe. Fisher’s board roles include Performa, Public Art Fund, Jewish Museum of NY, Israel Museum, Tate International Council, MOMA PS1, Jewish Funders Network (JFN) and JPPI.
She has received numerous recognitions: She represented the UK in 1993 in an exhibition celebrating the Maastricht Treaty; obtained the Freedom of the City of London award in recognition of her contribution to the arts; her sculpture was featured in the London Olympic Village; Performa named Fisher one of their Renaissance Women of 2014.
In April 2019, Wendy created Lockdown University, a program of the Kirsh Foundation, which began as an outlet to create engaging online talks her family and friends during the lockdown in their homes in various parts of the world. Currently the program has grown to over 10,000 participants, with 1,500 devices and around 4000 people worldwide for each session. The participants are fellow philanthropists, friends, academics, and civil society figures. Previous guests have included George Osborne, Rt Hon. Tony Blair, Sir Ronnie Cohen, the late Rabbi Lord Jonathan Sacks, Thomas Heatherwick, Ambassador Ron Prosor, David Harris, Siya Kolisi, Hannah Rothschild, David Miliband, Chemi Peres, and Lord Grade, Ambassador Avi Gil and Ambassador Dan Shapiro with a growing roster with many more distinguished guest speakers scheduled throughout 2021.
Eric S. Goldstein became CEO of UJA-Federation of New York on July 1, 2014.
Previously, Mr. Goldstein was a leading partner at Paul, Weiss, Rifkind, Wharton & Garrison LLP, one of the nation’s most respected law firms. He joined the firm in 1983 and became a partner in 1992, representing many of the world’s largest financial institutions and corporations in significant litigations.
Long active in the Jewish community, Mr. Goldstein served in a number of senior lay positions within UJA-Federation, most recently as vice chair with broad oversight of UJA-Federation’s work in Israel and the former Soviet Union. He was also a member of UJA-Federation’s Executive Committee and served as chair of its Lawyers Division, Commission on Jewish Identity and Renewal, and Global Strategy Task Force.
Also involved in Jewish communal life beyond UJA-Federation, Mr. Goldstein served as a member of the board of governors of the Jewish Agency for Israel; a founding board member of Yeshiva University’s Azrieli Graduate School of Jewish Education; chair of the board of Manhattan Day School; a board member of the New York Legal Assistance Group (NYLAG), a UJA-Federation beneficiary agency; president of the Beth Din of America; a board member of the Ramaz School; and an honorary board member of DOROT, also a UJA-Federation beneficiary agency.
Mr. Goldstein is a recipient of the 2013 Torch of Learning Award from American Friends of The Hebrew University, was selected by his peers for The Best Lawyers in America in regulatory enforcement and securities litigation, and was named by Benchmark Litigation as a Local Litigation Star for New York.
Born in Brooklyn, Mr. Goldstein graduated from Columbia College, magna cum laude, and Cornell Law School, magna cum laude. He was a participant in the Wexner Heritage Program. He lives in Manhattan with his wife, Tamar, and their four children.
Dr. Shivi Greenfield is the Deputy Director General for Strategy and Planning at the Jewish Agency for Israel and is responsible for the strategy, planning and evaluation of the organization’s operations across the globe. He holds a PhD in Political Theory from Oxford University, where he was a Weidenfeld Scholar, and received master’s and bachelor’s degrees in political philosophy and economics from Hebrew University of Jerusalem. He has also held research positions at NYU Law School and the Chazan Center for Social Justice and Democracy at the Van-Leer Jerusalem Institute.
Dan Halperin is Managing Director of IFTIC LTD, a consulting firm he formed together with Major General (ret) Menachem Meron, which deals in advising Israeli and American companies on how to expand mutual activities.
Halperin also serves on the board of various Israeli firms and organizations, such as Academon, Edmond de Rothschild Portfolio Management (Israel) and Hadas Arazim. He is the chairman of the Israel Festival Jerusalem and Chairman of the Jerusalem Institute of Israel Studies.
Previously, he served as counselor for economic affairs at the Israeli Embassy in Washington, as deputy director-general of the Finance Ministry, in charge of international affairs and generally headed Israel’s efforts against the Arab boycott of the 1970’s. Halperin also served as a political and economic commentator on Israel Radio and as spokesman of the Finance Ministry.
Halperin lives in Jerusalem. He is a proud husband, father of five and grandfather of twelve.
Stephen H. Hoffman, President of the Jewish Community Federation of Cleveland, is a graduate of Dickinson College and received his Masters of Social Work from the University of Maryland and a Master’s in Jewish Studies from the Baltimore Hebrew University. He is also a graduate of the Council of Jewish Federation’s Executive Recruitment and Education Program (FEREP).
He began his career at the Jewish Community Federation of Cleveland in 1974, and served as director of social planning and research and assistant director, before becoming the CEO in 1983. Stephen serves on the President’s Visiting Committee of Case Western Reserve University. He is a board member of the Musical Arts Association (the Cleveland Orchestra), the Mandel Foundation, the David and Inez Myers Foundation, and the Maltz Foundation. He also has served in a number of leadership positions for United Way Services, and is a past board member of the Greater Cleveland Roundtable, an organization devoted to promoting racial harmony in the city of Cleveland.
Stephen’s impact has been national and international in scope. He is the founding director of the Council for Initiatives in Jewish Education. For three years, 2001-2004, he was “loaned” by Cleveland to serve as the President and Chief Executive Officer of the United Jewish Communities, the national umbrella organization of the federation movement. In 2004, he was appointed by President George W. Bush to serve on the United States delegation to the Conference on Anti-Semitism, held in Berlin, Germany, by the Organization for Security and Co-operation in Europe (OSCE). He is Founder and Co-Chair of the Secure Communities Network, a national organization concerned with communal security issues and preparedness. He also serves as interim president of the Jewish People Policy Planning Institute (Jerusalem), an international policy think tank based in Jerusalem.
Stephen was the 1999 recipient of the Charles Eisenman Award, the Federation’s highest honor. In May of 2002, Stephen was awarded a Doctor of Humane Letters from the Baltimore Hebrew University, and in March of 2003, he was the first recipient of the Fuchs Mizrachi School’s Guardian of Zion Award in Cleveland, Ohio. Stephen and his wife Dr. Amy Hoffman have two children – Emily of Cleveland (married to Eric Weingart) and Jessica of Chicago.
Glen Lewy is a Senior Managing Director of Hudson Ventures, a technology-focused venture capital fund based in New York. Prior to joining Hudson in 2000, Glen spent 25 years as an adviser to some of the world’s largest and most prestigious corporations, having distinguished himself as both a lawyer and investment banker. He was a senior partner and member of the Management Committee of Wolfensohn & Co., a member of the Management Committee of Bankers Trust Company, and a partner in the New York law firm of Debevoise & Plimpton.
Glen is a member of the Council on Foreign Relations and sits on the Board of Trustees and Executive Committee of The New York Historical Society. He is the Vice-Chairman of the Board of Trustees of the SEED Foundation. Glen is also a Board member of several technology-related companies in which Hudson is an investor.
Glen recently completed a three year term as the National Chairman of the Anti-Defamation League (ADL). He has been involved in the ADL since the 1970s and continues to be a member of the National Commission and the National Executive Committee, on which he has served for more than 20 years.
Glen holds a B.A. degree from Amherst College and a J.D. from the University of Chicago Law School. Glen resides in Mamaroneck, New York with his wife, Cheryl (the Chair of the Westchester County Planning Commission). They have three grown children.
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Sallai Meridor served as Israel’s Ambassador to the USA from 2006 to 2009, and as the Chairman of the Jewish Agency from 1999 to 2005. From 2011 to mid 2018, he served as the Chairperson and co founder of a cyber security focused VC fund. He currently serves as the Chairperson of a Pension and Provident fund and as a board member of several policy institutes.
He is married to Noa, father of 3 daughters, grandfather of 8 grandchildren.
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Dr. Steven B. Nasatir, President of the Jewish United Fund/ Jewish Federation of Metropolitan Chicago, is a recognized authority in the area of social and human services and a distinguished Jewish communal leader. He has traveled throughout the world in his commitment to the cause of Jewish and human survival. A frequent visitor to Israel, Dr. Nasatir has also visited other countries in the Middle East, Latin America, Ethiopia, the former Soviet Union and other countries in Eastern Europe where the welfare of the Jewish community is at risk.
A former academician, Dr. Nasatir is the fourth person in the 111-year history of Chicago’s Jewish Federation to serve as its chief executive officer having been appointed to that position in 1979. He is a graduate of the University of Illinois; holds an M.A. degree from Roosevelt University and a Ph.D. from Northwestern University. He has served on the faculty of the University of Illinois in Chicago and has been a Visiting Professor at other institutions of higher education. He joined the staff of the Jewish Federation of Metropolitan Chicago in 1971. He has served on city and state commissions and task forces, has served on the Board of First Trust Nonprofit Companies, and was an elected member of the Board of Directors of United Way/Crusade of Mercy, Inc. He presently serves on the Board of Directors of the Jewish People Policy Planning Institute in Jerusalem, the Board of the Michael Reese Health Trust, the Covenant Foundation, a number of Family Foundation Boards of Directors. He is an Associate Member of the Board of Governors and delegate to the Assembly of the Jewish Agency for Israel, and a very active participant and consultant to the Jewish Federations of North America (JFNA). In November, 1986 the Mayor of the City of Chicago presented him with the Chicago Commission on Human Relations Annual Award; he was selected as the 1991 Distinguished Service Honoree by the Association of Jewish Community Organization Personnel (AJCOP); and in 2002 received the Franklin Roosevelt Humanitarian Award from Roosevelt University
A native Chicagoan, Dr. Nasatir is a member of Am Yisrael Congregation, has five sons, and is married to Carolyn Rosenberg, who is an attorney and a partner at Reed Smith Sachnoff & Weaver in Chicago.
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Marc is the Managing Partner of Clarion Capital Partners, LLC, an asset management firm in New York City specializing in growth oriented Private Equity. Prior to launching Clarion, from 1993 to 1999, Marc was a Managing Director at Wasserstein Perella & Co., where he served as Co-Head of the Media, Telecommunications, Entertainment, and Technology Group, the Leveraged Finance Group, and the Retail Group. He was also a member of the firm’s Policy Committee. During this period, he led investments in Imax Corporation and All-Clad Holdings, Inc. From 1991 until 1993, he was a Managing Director at BT Securities, in the firm’s High Yield and Mergers and Acquisitions groups. From 1990 to 1991, he was the Managing Partner of Kent Capital Partners, a principal investment firm with limited advisory business. From 1983 to 1990, he was a Partner at Drexel Burnham Lambert Inc., in the firm’s Mergers and Acquisitions department. From 1981 to 1983, he was a Financial Associate in the Beverage Division of the General Foods Corporation. Marc graduated from the Wharton School at the University of Pennsylvania with a BS in 1980 and an MBA in 1981.