World Jewish Congress

Voices of Impact

WJC-Lauder Fellow and Harvard student Isaac Raskas Ohrenstein interviews people doing impactful work in the Jewish world. The opinions on this podcast do not necessarily reflect those of the World Jewish Congress.

Latest Episodes

6 January 2024 • 45 minutes
Higher Education, Harvard, and Zionism: Dr. Einat Wilf
Dr. Einat Wilf is a former Israeli politician who served as a member of the Knesset for Independence and the Labor Party. She is leading thinker on topics such as Israel, Zionism, foreign policy, and education.
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1 February 2024 • 35 minutes
Family, Philanthropy, and Activism: Ari Ackerman
Ari Ackerman is a serial entrepreneur, strategic investor, and philanthropist. He has served on the boards of JCRC, AIPAC, Hillel, and UJA, and is involved in many other Jewish organizations.
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25 February 2024 • 42 Minutes
Corporations, Governance, and Leadership: Shira Goodman
Shira Goodman is an American businesswoman who was previously the president and CEO of Staples. She currently serves as a strategic advisor at Charlesbank Capital Partners.
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3 March 2024 • 33 minutes
Writing, Real Estate, and The Altneu: Avital Chizhik-Goldschmidt
Avital Chizhik-Goldschmidt is a prolific author, journalist, and co-founder of an enormously popular synagogue on Manhattan's Upper East Side called The Altneu.
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12 March 2024 • 26 Minutes
Inclusion, Education, and US-Israel Relations: Jay Ruderman
Jay Ruderman is an activist for disability rights and the US-Israel relationship. He serves as the president of the Ruderman Family Foundation.
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17 March 2024 • 51 Minutes
Foundations, Tzedaka, and Jewish Unity: Andrés Spokoiny
Andrés Spokoiny is the Chief Executive Officer of the Jewish Funders Network. Originally from Argentina, he is a leading voice in the Jewish philanthropic world.
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24 March 2024 • 32 Minutes
Land, Trees, and The Billion-Dollar Roadmap: Russell Robinson
Russell Robinson is the CEO of the Jewish National Fund. He currently oversees the organization’s groundbreaking One Billion Dollar Roadmap for the Next Decade and has ranked on The Jerusalem Post’s list of the World’s 50 Most Influential Jews.
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31 March 2024 • 38 Minutes
Yeshiva, Academia, and Entrepreneurship: Dean Noam Wasserman
Dr. Noam Wasserman is the Dean of Sy Syms Business School at Yeshiva University. He was previously a professor at Harvard Business School and is the author of The Founder’s Dilemmas: Anticipating and Avoiding the Pitfalls That Can Sink a Startup.
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7 April 2024 • 32 Minutes
Bill Clinton, Kosher Food, and the Orthodox Union: Rabbi Menachem Genack
Rabbi Menachem Genack is the CEO of OU Kosher. He leads a synagogue in Englewood, NJ, and serves on the Board of Trustees of Touro College and NY Medical School.
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7 April 2024 • 27 Minutes
Style, Success, and the Show Company: Jane Weitzman
Jane Weitzman is the former Executive Vice President of the Stuart Weitzman Shoe Company, founded by her husband Stuart Weitzman. She is now a full-time philanthropist.
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12 April 2024 • 50 Minutes
Pluralism, Democracy, and Liberal Zionism: Dr. Andrew Rehfeld
Dr. Andrew Rehfeld is a political scientist and President of Hebrew Union College - Jewish Institute of Religion.
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17 April 2024 • 38 Minutes
Sefaria, Lehrhaus, Memory, and Creativity: Joshua Foer
Josh Foer is a co-founder of Sefaria and Lerhaus. He is also a wildlife journalist for National Geographic, a board member of the Jim Joseph Foundation, and the author of a 2011 book titled "Moonwalking with Einstein: The Art and Science of Remembering Everything."
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21 April 2024 • 44 Minutes
Terrorism, Antisemitism, and Foreign Policy: Special Envoy Elan Carr
Elan Carr serves as the CEO of the Israeli-American Council (IAC). He was previously the Special Envoy to Combat and Monitor Antisemitism under President Trump.
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3 May 2024 • 44 Minutes
Venture Capital, Social Impact, and Palestinian Tech: Yadin Kaufmann
Yadin Kaufmann is a social entrepreneur and one of Israel’s leading venture capitalists. He has founded several nonprofits in Israel and the Palestinian Territories, in addition to the first venture fund targeting Palestinian tech companies.
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15 May 2024 • 42 Minutes
Rafah, Hamas, and the War on Iran: Dr. Jonathan Schanzer
Dr. Jonathan Schanzer is senior vice president for research at the Foundation for Defense of Democracies (FDD), where he oversees the work of the organization’s experts and scholars.
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3 June 2024 • 47 Minutes
Middle East, Arab Politics, Normalization: Robert Satloff
Dr. Robert Satloff is the Executive Director of the Washington Institute for Near East Policy
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29 May 2024 • 23 Minutes
Shopify, Innovation, and Heritage: Harley Finkelstein
Harley Finkelstein is the President of Shopify, an e-commerce company headquartered in Ontario
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9 June 2024 • 27 Minutes
Teaching, Special Ed, Day School: Rebecca Rohr Ritter
Rebecca Rohr Ritter is Head of Teaching and Learning and a member of the founding team at the Shefa School in New York City.
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5 June 2024 • 42 Minutes
Spirituality, Aliyah, Invest in Israel: Eric Reiner
Eric Viner is the Founder and Managing Partner of Vine Ventures, a venture capital firm investing across the United States, Israel, and Latin America.
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11 June 2024 • 61 Minutes
Economics, Stock Exchange, Projections: Dr. Eugene Kandel
Dr. Eugene Kandel is the Chairman of the Tel Aviv Stock Exchange. He is the former CEO of Start-Up-Nation Central and former Chairman of Israel’s National Economic Council.
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17 June 2024 • 36 Minutes
Defending Israel, Funding Aid, Combatting Terror: Steven Weil
Rabbi Steven Weil is the CEO of Friends of the IDF (FIDF), the organization collecting donations on behalf of the soldiers of the Israel Defense Forces across the United States of America.
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19 June 2024 • 30 Minutes
The Negev, Ben Gurion, Forward Motion: Doug Seserman
Doug Seserman, the CEO of Americans for Ben-Gurion University and the former President and CEO of JEWISHcolorado.
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24 June 2024 • 40 Minutes
Obamas, Speechwriting, Antisemitism: Sarah Hurwitz
Sarah Hurwitz, a White House speechwriter from 2009 to 2017, served as head speechwriter for First Lady Michelle Obama. In 2019, she published “Here All Along: Finding Meaning, Spirituality, and a Deeper Connection to Life – in Judaism.”
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30 June 2024 • 42 Minutes
Social Change, Food Insecurity, Community Empowerment: Abby Leibman
Abby J. Leibman is the president & CEO of MAZON: A Jewish Response to Hunger and was a co-founder of the California Women’s Law Center. Inspired by Jewish values and ideals, MAZON is a national advocacy organization working to end hunger among people of all faiths and backgrounds in the United States and Israel.
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3 July 2024 • 46 Minutes
Influence, Impact, and Giving: Sylvan Adams
Sylvan Adams is a Canadian-Israeli billionaire businessman, philanthropist, and self-appointed ambassador-at-large for the State of Israel who lives in Tel Aviv.
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6 July 2024 • 31 Minutes
Public Service, South Florida, International Growth: Steven Meiner
Steven Meiner is the Mayor of Miami Beach, elected in a historic runoff race on November 21, 2023. Prior to his mayoral role, he served as an enforcement attorney with the SEC and practiced law in New York City.
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