American Jewish activist Brian Lurie has been appointed president of the New Israel Fund, succeeding former Meretz MK Naomi Chazan, who served four tumultuous years in the post.
Lurie, a rabbi by training, was CEO of the San Francisco Jewish Federation for 17 years and has also been involved in advancing Arab-Jewish relations.
The New Israel Fund, whose Israeli headquarters is in Jerusalem, has been involved in advancing a range of projects focusing on civil society and equality in Israel.
In 2010, the New Israel Fund and Chazan herself were targeted in a campaign by the right-wing Im Tirzu organization, which claimed that they had funded groups that assisted the United Nations-appointed Goldstone Commission in its probe of Israel’s military operation in Gaza. The report has been widely criticized as being unfair to Israel. Im Tirzu ads featured Chazan with a horn coming out of her forehead.
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