Interwoven/שָׁזוּר was founded by passionate Israeli educators of American descent and former Shlichim to NYC, all heavily invested in the joint future of the Jewish people and deeply inspired by Jewish life in the U.S. Our seasoned educators, rooted in both communities, possess a deep level of familiarity and understanding of contemporary Israeli and American Jewry. Interwoven/שָׁזוּר educators are uniquely situated to curate immersive educational experiences enhancing mutual understanding between Israelis and American Jews.
Hilla Drechler recently returned to Israel after four years in New York, where she served as the Representative of the WZO's Education Department in North America. She is a convener and connecter and today she continues working in the field of Jewish Peoplehood, Israel – Diaspora relations, education, and community building.
Prior to her term at the WZO, Hilla was the Director of the Young Adults Department at the Holon Municipality, and served as the Head of Tel Aviv Municipality’s Domestic Tourism Department. Hilla has a BA in Political Science and Economics, an MA in Political Thought from Tel-Aviv University and an MA in Israel Education from George Washington University.
Ben Zion Ferziger
Ben Zion grew up in Kfar Saba, Israel. He is a graduate of Yeshivat Har Etzion and The Hebrew University Faculty of Law, and previously taught Judaic studies at Moriah College, Sydney through the Torah Mitzion Kollel program. Ben Zion is passionate about using creative methods to deepen the mutual knowledge and understanding between Jewish communities around the world. He currently works as a corporate lawyer in New York.
Rabbi Amitai Fraiman, Founder
Rabbi Amitai Fraiman is an American-Israeli peoplehood enthusiast. He co-founded “Jerusalem Midnight Biking”, an innovative bike touring company based in Jerusalem. Rabbi Fraiman has professional and leadership experience in content development, advocacy, and relationship building in his work for Tzofim Garin Tzabar (Israeli Scouts Lone Soldier Program), NYU Bronfman Center (Hillel of NYU), The Arthur Project and LAVAN. Rabbi Fraiman was ordained at Yeshivat Chovevei Torah as well as completed a dual MPA-MA at NYU. He lives in Palo Alto with his family, where he serves as the Director of the Z3 Project, an initiative of the Oshman Family JCC in Palo Alto, aiming to foster a healthier relationship between Diaspora Jewry and Israel.
Hela Lahar is an American-Israeli. Hela has served in several executive positions in prominent nonprofit organizations and is a Jewish educator devoted to development and leadership of new initiatives in different organizations, both in Israel and the US, and has led many multinational programs bridging the divides between communities. She served as Acting Executive Director of the PeaceWorks Foundation, founded the Jewish Peoplehood Education Center at Israel Movement for Progressive Judaism (IMPJ) and The Israel Education Center at Columbia/Barnard Hillel. Hela holds a Masters in Diplomacy and Security Studies from Tel Aviv University and is a certified facilitator with Resetting The Table, a Hillel ACCELERATE alum, as well the Jewish Peoplehood Executive program of the Anu Museum in TLV.
Moshe Samuels, CEO
Moshe served as the Jewish Agency's community emissary to Birmingham, AL; an Israel fellow at the University of Western Ontario; and in various leadership roles at Camp Ramah in Canada and Camp Ramah in the Rockies. He was the Educational Director of NOAM, the Masorti youth movement in Israel, and the Director of 'Tikkun Olam in Tel Aviv-Jaffa', BINA's service-learning Masa program. More recently, Moshe served as the Director of Israel Engagement at Congregation B'nai Jeshurun in NYC, and as the Program Director of the Sonabend Center for Israel at JCC Manhattan. In April 2021 his acclaimed TV miniseries "The New Jew" aired on primetime television on the Israeli Public Broadcasting Corporation. Aligned with Shazur's mission, The series aims to introduce Israelis to American Jewry.
Originally from Moshav Gea in the Northern Negev, Hai spent the past three years serving as the Jewish Agency's Senior Community Shaliach (emissary) to the Upper West Side. In his capacity as Shaliach, Hai worked with the diverse Jewish demographics of the neighborhood, including more than 25 different organizations, building community coalitions on Israel. Before moving to New York, Hai worked for the JDC's Institute for Leadership and Governance as a Program Director in the Western Negev, and in various positions in the Rothschild Caesarea Foundation. He holds an MBA in Social Leadership from Ben Gurion University and the Mandel Foundation, and a Bachelor's in General History and Israel Studies from Ben Gurion University.
Rabbi Dr. Daniel Gordis
Rabbi Dr. Yitz Greenberg
Shira Hecht-Koller Esq.
Rabbi Joy Levitt
Michael Rosenzweig Esq.
Professor Jonathan Sarna