Multiple audiences learn advocacy tips from First Israel Today speaker

by | Nov 14, 2014 | Other News

Hundreds of people in Tidewater were recipients of the insights and opinions of former Knesset member and Israeli advocate, Dr. Einat Wilf, during her recent visit.

Wilf came to the area on Thursday, Oct. 30, the first presenter in the annual Israel Today Forum, a speaker series presented by the Community Relations Council of the United Jewish Federation of Tidewater, and corporate and community partners.

More than 200 people heard her speak in the evening at the community-wide event held at the Sandler Family Campus. While Wilf’s hour-long discussion was the purpose for her trip to Virginia Beach, it was not her only speaking engagement.

From almost the moment the sun rose on that Thursday morning, until her plane left the next day, Wilf was busy. She addressed the UJFT Women’s, Young Adult and Men’s groups, students at a number of schools, friends of the CRC (including area clergy), and local and national media.

“Usually when I’m brought in to do a talk, there may be one or two events scheduled around it, but I don’t think I’ve ever had something on this scale,” Wilf told a group of young adult leaders who met with her for an informal discussion after the community event.

“Definitely not since my campaign for office,” Wilf added, comparing the day’s schedule to her successful run for a Knesset seat in 2010, a comment that elicited laughter from the group.

Wilf’s experience of a non-stop day is now the norm for experts featured in the Israel Today Forum. Their appearances help the CRC achieve a large part of its mission: to establish constructive dialogue, create educational opportunities and advocate for Israel.

The CRC has found it can reach not only the Tidewater Jewish community, but many others as well, by sharing the thoughts, work and opinions of these vibrant and dynamic speakers when they’re here.

CRC director Robin Mancoll books the diverse guests in as many places as she think they can handle. In Wilf’s case, there were at least 12 different planned meetings.

“It’s not just the amount of events that were scheduled; it’s the breadth of them that was so impressive,” Wilf said.

“It’s colleges and high schools and international students and pastors and the media—really a very wide range. The fact that Robin has us reaching out to so many different groups and communities, and engage with them about Israel, is brilliant. I’ve never experienced this, on any scale.”

by Laine Mednick Rutherford