Momentum's Lori Palatnik to light 'Diaspora' torch on Independence Day

“Momentum works tirelessly to strengthen Jewish identity and connection to Israel through young mothers in their communities."

Lori Palatnik (photo credit: Courtesy)
Lori Palatnik
(photo credit: Courtesy)
Lori Palatnik, the founding director of Momentum, has been selected to light the “Diaspora” torch at the 2020 Israel Independence Day ceremony.
“Momentum works tirelessly to strengthen Jewish identity and connection to Israel through young mothers in their communities,” wrote Culture and Sports Minister Miri Regev in the announcement. “Rebbetzin Lori is a leading, unique and exciting version of the ‘Queen of the Desert,’ a Zionist who loves Israel, two values for which momentum never stops striving.”

Palatnik is described on her organization’s website as a Jewish educator, speaker, writer and media personality. She is also the author of four books. In 2014, she was named one of the 10 “Women to Watch” by Jewish Women International, and Hadassah named her one of the “Most Outstanding Jewish American Women of Our Time.”
Palatnik lives part-time in Jerusalem and part-time in Washington.
Regev said that she chose Palatnik because of her organization’s signature program, an eight-day mission to Israel that is followed by Jewish engagement opportunities in the participants' hometowns upon their return. So far, more than 20,000 women from the Diaspora have taken part in the Momentum Israel journey, which Regev said has served to strengthen Jewish identity and connection to the Jewish state. 
“The rebbetzin… symbolizes the eternal and victorious relationship between us and our brothers and sisters in the Diaspora,” Regev concluded.
Momentum was formerly known as the Jewish Women's Renaissance Project. It re-branded in 2019.
The other torch lighters who have been announced include Idan Raichel, Israeli singer and songwriter; Professor Galia Rahav, head of Infectious Disease at Sheba Medical Center; Eli Ben-Shem, chairman of Yad Lebanim; and Col. Hisham Ibrahim, IDF.
 
Because of coronavirus, this year’s Independence Day torch-lighting event will take place without an audience.