(photo credit: AFP PHOTO)
New Jewish Agency chairman Isaac Herzog will walk in the footsteps of his predecessor, Natan Sharansky, in more ways than one.
In addition to assuming the critical role of chairman, Herzog will also fill Sharansky’s prestigious role as chairman of the Genesis Prize’s selection committee, the organization announced.
“I am greatly honored to take part in this great endeavor of the Genesis Prize, an institution which tells the unique Jewish story and manifests the contribution of the Jewish people to humanity in this current age, which is full of cynicism and ignorance as to the uniqueness of our people,” Herzog said.
Herzog succeeds the prominent human rights activist and the founding chairman of the committee. Sharansky was instrumental in establishing the Genesis Prize in 2013 and will assume the role of the chairman of the advisory board of The Genesis Prize Foundation.
“I am very happy to extend a warm welcome to Mr. Isaac Herzog, a man who commands deep respect throughout the Jewish world,” said Stan Polovets, cofounder and chairman of the Genesis Prize Foundation.
“We look forward to drawing on Isaac’s wisdom, expertise and unparalleled knowledge of both the Israeli society and Diaspora Jewry, which unfortunately are drifting farther and farther apart. This is one of the greatest challenges facing the Jewish people today, and Genesis will work closely and tirelessly with Isaac on addressing this challenge,” he added.
Polovets thanked Sharansky for his chairmanship of the selection committee as well as the outgoing chairman of the advisory board, president emeritus of Brandeis University Jehuda Reinharz.
Reinharz serves as chairman of the board of the Weizmann Institute of Science, Rehovot, and president of the Mandel Foundation, and will remain a member of the Genesis advisory board.