Reprinted from JPost.com
There’s been a changing of the guard in the US board of directors of the America-Israel Friendship League (AIFL). The new chairman is Eric J. Gertler, and the president is Jonathan Barsade.
Gertler currently serves as chairman of US News & World Report, is CEO of Ulysses Ventures, and is a trustee of the Zuckerman Family Foundation, which has offices in Tel Aviv and New York. Barsade’s involvement with the AIFL has come full circle. He is an alumnus of the 1977 inaugural Youth Ambassador Student Exchange (YASE). He is also an Israeli and US attorney, and a serial entrepreneur, having founded several successful start-ups, most recently founding and serving as CEO of the Philadelphia-based Exactor, Inc., a provider of sales tax compliance services that was recently acquired by Intuit, Inc.
One of the highlights of the meeting presided over by AIFL vice president, board member and former New York attorney-general Robert Abrams, was the appointment of Kenneth J. Bialkin, a veteran American Jewish community leader who is a former long-time chairman of the AIFL, and at this meeting was appointed honorary chairman. Bialkin vowed to continue to support the League in all its endeavors, and commended the vision of the organization’s new leaders, including the new executive director Wayne L. Firestone, whose experience includes living, studying and working in Israel. Firestone has held leadership positions at Hillel International, the Israel on Campus Coalition, the Genesis Prize Foundation, the Anti-Defamation League, and the Technion-Israel Institute of Technology in Haifa.
Gertler said he was humbled to follow in Bialkin’s footsteps. Bialkin leaves an extraordinary and inspirational legacy of leadership and commitment. Former Israel ambassador to the United Nations Dan Gillerman, who chairs the Israel board of the AIFL, joined in the salutes to Bialkin, adding that he looked forward to working with the new US board.