Reality star Miriam Haart: ‘Israel opened my mind to the vast ways of practicing Judaism’

Star of the hit reality series My Unorthodox Life on Netflix, Miriam Haart, gave an exclusive interview to JewsWeek, The Jerusalem Post’s new podcast about Judaism and Israel.

 JewsWeek (photo credit: JPOST STAFF)
(photo credit: JPOST STAFF)

After hitting fame as one of the stars of the hit reality series My Unorthodox Life on Netflix, Miriam Haart, the former-orthodox second daughter of Julia Haart, is planning on spending a few months in Israel. She gave an exclusive interview to JewsWeek, The Jerusalem Post’s new podcast about the Jewish world, during her recent visit to Israel with Birthright.

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As the founder and key engineer behind a suite of over 10 successful applications, including Recyclable, Norma, and Eazitt, Haart, 23, has cemented her place as a woman of mettle in an industry often dominated by men.“I’m in the Holy Land, and it’s truly amazing,” Miriam said. “I know it might sound strange to some, but I love the hot and humid weather here. There’s something inherently energizing about it.”

Known to many for her role in My Unorthodox Life, Miriam’s relationship with Israel is more profound than an occasional visit to attend celebratory events, and making spiritually significant journeys like Birthright.

“Actually, this is my fifth time visiting Israel,” Haart confirmed. “I’ve been here for weddings, bar mitzvahs, and a previous Birthright trip.

Last year’s Birthright trip was a transformative experience for me. I connected deeply with my group and had the opportunity to witness the diverse spectrum of Jewish identities in Israel.”

  (credit: MIRIAM HAART)
(credit: MIRIAM HAART)

This summer on Birthright, Haart served as a madricha (a counselor), meaning she was part of the staff, being in charge of certain educational aspects of the group of young American Jews.

Her exposure to diverse forms of Judaism during her visits to Israel has had a profound impact on her perspective. “Coming to Israel opened my mind to the vast ways of practicing Jewish identity,” Haart shared.

“In the US, I was familiar with a certain spectrum, but in Israel, I discovered a completely different range of expressions. It’s beautiful to witness how Judaism intertwines with culture and daily life here. It allowed me to connect more with the people and embrace the diversity within our community.”

While Haart has garnered fame as a reality TV star, it’s her success as an app engineer and entrepreneur that defines her professional trajectory. During her stay in Tel Aviv, she’s been busy networking and interacting with top CEOs and founders in Israel’s thriving high-tech industry.

“I have a tech company called Unorthodox, where I build apps and websites for clients,” Haart explained, diving into her work. “While in Tel Aviv, I’ve been networking and meeting CEOs and founders in the high-tech industry. I’m considering working in Israel for a few months, possibly doing VC work. Tel Aviv presents a wonderful fusion of work and play, making it the perfect place for me to expand my professional horizons while engaging with a vibrant cultural scene.”

Haart's past projects

Past projects range from designing an intricate consumer goods delivery app for South Africa, similar to Instacart, to building multiple other solutions for different companies. These experiences have not only honed her skills but also ignited her passion for supporting female founders and addressing the diversity gap in the tech industry.

“I’ve worked on various apps for different companies,” Haart informed us. “One of the notable ones was a consumer goods delivery app in South Africa, similar to Instacart. But more than that, it’s about supporting female founders and addressing the diversity gap in the tech industry.”

Addressing antisemitism, Miriam ardently advocates for standing strong in one’s Jewish identity, much like she champions women’s rights.

“Antisemitism definitely affects me,” she declared. “I believe it’s important to stand up for our identities and the communities we belong to. During my recent Birthright trip, I had the opportunity to share my knowledge and experiences with fellow participants who may have had limited exposure to Judaism. It was a meaningful way to bridge gaps and promote understanding.”

Participating in My Unorthodox Life brought a sea change in Miriam’s life. Suddenly, her personal journey and identities were under public scrutiny. “It’s been a significant experience. Suddenly, all my identities were thrust into the public eye. But I chose to embrace it, even though it was scary,” she shared.

Looking towards the future, Miriam envisions herself expanding her knowledge base and continuing to create a positive impact through her work. “I’m focused on my love for my family and the pursuit of knowledge,” she shared, adding that she’s pursuing a second degree in philosophy and history at NYU.

“If anyone in Israel needs assistance, they can reach out to me through,” Haart emphasized. “Our all-female team is dedicated to providing responsive and efficient services. Lastly, I dream of a future where female leadership extends beyond tech, possibly even to a female-led government in Israel. Together, we can create positive change."

The Jerusalem Post presents JewsWeek podcast.

The Post is excited to launch JewsWeek, a captivating new bi-monthly podcast focusing on the Jewish world and spotlighting Jews making headlines. Hosted by Zvika Klein, an award-winning journalist and our Jewish World Analyst, each episode promises enlightening interviews with Jewish leaders and deep dives into issues impacting Jews worldwide.

In the debut episode of JewsWeek, Klein has also held an engaging conversation with Eric Fingerhut, the President and CEO of the Jewish Federations of North America. Fingerhut discusses the complex relationship between the organized American Jewish community and Israel, addressing the controversy surrounding a recent meeting with Israeli Finance Minister Betzalel Smotrich.