Applications now open! Join our Naomi Chazan Fellowship: a ten-day study tour in Israel, taking engaged and committed Jewish leaders to the next level
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Who We Are


Ilana Snyder (President)
Ilana is Emeritus Professor in the Faculty of Education, Monash University. She is a member of the Advisory Committee of the Australian Centre for Jewish Civilization, Monash University, and on the Board of the Australian Book Review.

Steven Glass (Vice-President)
Steven is a partner of Gilbert + Tobin lawyers, and a member of the board of the Asylum Seekers Centre in Sydney. Steven has a commercial litigation practice and provides pro bono legal advice to refugees and indigenous organisations. Steven was a former president of AUJS in the early 1980s.

Ric Benjamin (Treasurer)
Ric is the Founder & CEO of GoodSystems, past CEO of Foodbank Victoria (2010-13) and past President of Stand Up (1998-2009, previously called Jewish Aid Australia). Ric also mentors NFP boards and executive officers who are looking to transition business models and/or improve mission outcomes.

Melissa Castan

Elysheva Elsass
Elysheva is the Marketing and Communications Manager at the Jewish Museum of Australia. She completed the New Israel Fund’s inaugural Naomi Chazan Fellowship program in 2015. She holds a Bachelor of Design (Hons) from RMIT University and a Bachelor of Arts (Psychology) from Monash University.

Steven Lewis
Steven is a principal of the class action specialist firm ACA Lawyers. Steven has run landmark cases under Australia's Racial Discrimination Act.

Karen Loblay
Karen is a businesswoman, founder and director of the Matana Foundation for Young People, Sapphire Paul Harris Fellow of Rotary International, Specialist Consultant for Chain Reaction Foundation, Catalyst member of The Ethics Centre.

Irving Wallach
Irving is a barrister, who has held key leadership positions in the Jewish community: head of Betar Australia, National Secretary of AUJS, Secretary-General of the World Union of Jewish Students, executive member of the NSW Jewish Board of Deputies, board member of Mount Sinai College and Moriah College, and chair of the Zionist Youth Council of NSW.


Executive Director – Liam Getreu
Liam is a former national chair of the Australian Zionist Youth Council (AZYC) and the Australasian Union of Jewish Students (AUJS), a graduate of Bialik College and Habonim Dror, and was a founding director of the New Israel Fund Australia Foundation in 2011. He holds a Bachelor of Arts (Middle East Studies) from Deakin University, and an Executive Master of Arts from the University of Melbourne.

Program Manager – Sharon Berger
Sharon oversees the Naomi Chazan Fellowship. Prior to joining NIF Sharon worked at Shalom for five years organising Limmud, the Sydney Jewish Writers Festival and food events. A former journalist, Sharon holds a B.A. hons from the University of California Berkeley and an M.Phil in Modern Middle Eastern Studies from St. Antony’s College, Oxford.


NIF Australia’s co-patrons are Ambassador Martin Indyk and Ronni Kahn. Read more »


In 2013, we established the NIF Australia Advisory Council. Its members include Associate Professor Mark Baker, Lee Ann BasserRobin Margo S.C.Justice Ronald Sackville AO, and Robyne Schwarz AM. Read more »


The New Israel Fund (US/Israel) board includes former special legal advisor to the Israeli government Talia Sasson, former deputy speaker of the Knesset Naomi Chazan, Professor of Jewish History at UCLA David Myers, Israeli singer Achinoam "Noa" Nini, former Channel 1 news anchor Yael Sternhell, and Arab-Israeli hi-tech entrepreneur Reem Younis. Read more »

In addition, the New Israel Fund has an International Council in Israel, which is made up of some of the most well respected Israeli authors, academics, artists and public intellectuals. The list includes Amos Oz, Nobel Prize winners Prof. Aaron Ciechanover and Daniel Kahneman, former Knesset Speaker Avraham BurgDavid Broza, and former senior IDF officers Brig. Gen. (Res.) Israela Oron and Brig. Gen. (Ret.) Ilan Paz. Read more »