Bank of Israel’s Hedva Ber, Supervisor of Banks, to step down

A second senior level manager, Irit Mendelson, has also resigned

Hedva Ber (photo credit: HILLIS9/WIKIMEDIA COMMONS)
Hedva Ber
Two members of Bank of Israel’s senior leadership team have announced they are stepping down next year.
Dr. Hedva Ber will complete her role as supervisor of banks on April 15 after nearly five years. Ber reports directly to the governor of the Bank of Israel, Prof. Amir Yaron.
In addition, Irit Mendelson, director of the Accounting, Payment and Settlement Systems Department, announced her resignation.
Ber oversaw the implementation of the Strum Committee’s recommendation to separate two credit card companies from the large banks. She also helped lower regulatory requirements for new entities, and as a result of that issued a license for a new bank and two new merchant acquirers. She and her department were also instrumental in advancing infrastructure projects, such as a system to make it easier to move from one bank to another, and open banking, a secure way to give providers access to personal financial information.
Under her leadership, the Banking Supervision Department also helped banks make digital transformations and adjust their business models to the current technological revolution.
“I thank the governor, Prof. Amir Yaron, and former governor Prof. Karnit Flug, for the huge honor they gave me to lead the supervision of the banking system in recent years, and for the full partnership and backing they gave me throughout that time in leading the steps that we have led,” Ber said in a statement. “I complete my term with a sense of satisfaction in view of the fact that we have advanced many infrastructural changes, the benefits of which can already be felt by households and businesses, and some of which will come to fruition and be felt gradually over the coming years.”
Yaron thanked Ber, as well, and said, “I am convinced that she will continue to serve the Israeli economy in the future.”
Mendelson will complete her role in March following eight years in the position. She established and managed her department, helping to lay the infrastructure to lead a revolution in the area of payments in Israel.
“Irit was in charge of a wide variety of activity at the heart of the Bank of Israel’s work in particular, and the Israeli economy in general,” said Bank of Israel Director-General Hezi Kalo. “The payment systems, the Bank of Israel’s banking services to the government and to the banking system, and the accounting and control systems at the Bank of Israel itself were significantly advanced during her term, and prepared the bank for the challenges of the modern financial economy. I thank Irit for her professionalism, her cooperation, and her dedication in every area in which she worked.”
Flug served as governor of the Bank of Israel for five years, stepping down in November 2018. Yaron was selected by Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu to take her place.