Outgoing Jewish Agency Chairman Natan Sharansky and Chairman-elect MK Isaac Herzog share a moment following Herzog’s election at the Jewish Agency Board of Governors’ meetings in Jerusalem, June 24, 2018. Photo credit: Nir Kafri for The Jewish Agency for Israel.

Isaac Herzog Elected Jewish Agency Chairman

The Board of Governors of The Jewish Agency for Israel has unanimously elected Member of Knesset Isaac Herzog to succeed Natan Sharansky as Chairman of The Jewish Agency Executive. The vote by Jewish leaders from around the world took place Sunday at the opening plenary of the Board's June meetings in Jerusalem.
 
In electing MK Herzog, the Board accepted the recommendation of the Leadership Nominating Committee, composed of the leaders of The Jewish Agency's constituent organizations – the Jewish Federations of North America, Keren Hayesod-UIA, and the World Zionist Organization. Chairman-elect Herzog addressed the gathering shortly after his election and was congratulated by outgoing Chairman of the Executive Natan Sharansky and Chairman of the Board of Governors Michael Siegal. Chairman Sharansky will conclude his tenure at the organization's helm during the course of this week's Board meetings. Chairman-elect Herzog will step down from the Knesset in the coming weeks and will enter office on August 1.
 
“I’d like to thank Natan for his nine years of outstanding leadership and direction and hope and am confident that Isaac Herzog will lead The Jewish Agency in the same honorable and compassionate fashion as Natan Sharansky,” Chairman of the Board of Governors Michael Siegal said.
 
MK Isaac Herzog, son of former Israeli President, Chaim Herzog and grandson of Israel's first Chief Rabbi, Yizhak Isaac Halevi Herzog, was born in Israel in 1960. When his father served as Israel’s Ambassador to the UN from 1975-1978, Herzog studied and graduated from The Ramaz Jewish High School in New York and attended Jewish youth camps, Ramah and Massad. He continued his education in the U.S., studying International Relations, English Literature and Arabic at Cornell and NYU Universities.

Herzog has worked with world Jewry all his life. From 2007-2009, he was the Minister of the Jewish Diaspora, Society and the Fight Against Anti-Semitism, taking a major part in anti-BDS activities following the Second Lebanon War, leading the international Forum against Anti-Semitism and chairing Taglit-Birthright.
 
“We are the only organization whose leadership includes representatives of both the coalition and the opposition, of Orthodox, Conservative, and Reform Jewry, and of Jewish communities around the world. We are the independent voice of the Jewish people and, at the same time, our main partner is the government of Israel. It is essential that we preserve both our independence and our partnership, and I wish you much success in that crucial endeavor,” outgoing Chairman of the Executive Natan Sharansky said.
 
As Government Secretary, Herzog laid the foundation for the historic compromise on egalitarian prayer at the Kotel that was adopted for all religious streams. Over the last 20 years, he has been a regular speaker and participant at The Jewish Federations of North America’s General Assembly.
 
An attorney by profession, Herzog was elected Chairman of the Labor Party in November 2013, making him Leader of the Opposition. In 2014, Herzog led the alliance between the Labor Party and MK Tzipi Livini's Hatnua Party creating the Zionist Union, Israel's largest central-left political party.
 
In addition to his Ministry of the Jewish Diaspora, Herzog was the Minister of Housing and Construction (2005), Minister of Tourism (2006-2007) and Minister of Welfare & Social Services (2007-2011). Prior to that he served as Government Secretary (1999-2001). He also served as the Israel Government Coordinator for the provision of humanitarian aid to the population of Gaza in 2008-2009.
 
“A Jew is a Jew is a Jew, no matter his denomination or the type of kippah he chooses to wear or not to wear on his head. I promise to work hard on promote Jewish unity and to partner with the Prime Minister and the government to achieve this crucial goal,” Chairman-Elect of the Executive Isaac Herzog said.
 
He lives in Tel Aviv with his wife, Michal, and they have three sons.

Additional information about MK Isaac Herzog >

 

 

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24 Jun 2018 / 11 Tamuz 5778 0