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.
In electing 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 will step down from the Knesset in the coming weeks and will enter office on August 1.
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.
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.
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. 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,” Herzog said.