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Masa Honors 12 Jewish Women Ahead of International Women’s Day

As part of its “Inspiring 12: Jewish Women Working to Make a Difference” campaign, Masa honored a dozen women who it says have contributed to enriching and sustaining Jewish communal life.
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March 8, 2023

A visionary Tel Aviv fashion designer, who created the world’s first commercially available 3D printed clothing. The pioneering CEO of Habonim Dror, who is molding the next generation of Zionist activists through one of the oldest and most prestigious labor Zionist movements in the world. A visionary Jewish educator, who was the founding director of the highly lauded Momentum program, which is credited with bringing thousands of women closer to their Judaism through trips to Israel. 

What do these three leaders have in common? They have been recognized as “pioneering and innovative women” recognized by Masa this March in honor of International Women’s Day for their service to the Jewish community. As part of its “Inspiring 12: Jewish Women Working to Make a Difference” campaign, Masa honored a dozen women who it says have contributed to enriching and sustaining Jewish communal life.

According to Masa, this year’s honorees have “committed to building a brighter future” for the Jewish community and have worked to bring communities together during the challenges of the last three years. Masa is an organization that facilitates long-term work and study abroad opportunities in Israel for recent college graduates.

Many of the honorees have founded businesses and developed new innovations, while others have created meaningful opportunities for the next generation.

Many of the honorees on Masa’s list have founded businesses and developed new innovations, while others, according to Masa, have created meaningful opportunities for the next generation to engage more deeply with Jewish life across Israel, North America, and Europe. 

Amy Albertson was among the 12 women honored by Masa this year. A Jewish advocate and educator from California, Albertson created “The Asian Israeli” Instagram account, which she used to chronicle her more than six years living in the Jewish state as a Chinese American Jewish woman. The former president of Hillel at Portland State University, Albertson interned in Tel Aviv with Masa and received the Women’s International Zionist Organization’s Warrior for Israel Award.

“Being recognized by Masa is such an honor. It is a testament to the hard work I have put in to make the Jewish community more diverse, visible and proud,” said Albertson. “It is especially meaningful to me as an Asian-American Jewish woman, to have my efforts acknowledged and appreciated, and to know I am part of a group of amazing women who are championing the cause of Jewish diversity.” 

In addition to Albertson, Masa’s 2023 honorees included Meara Ashtivker, New York director of PJ Library; Heidi Gantwerk, president and CEO of the Jewish Federation of San Diego County; Shiri Madar, CEO of Habonim Dror; Lori Palatnik, founding director of Momentum; Danit Peleg, 3D printed digital fashion designer; Rachel Sasiene, manager of the Israel Action and Addressing Antisemitism Program at Hillel International; Emily Schrader, CEO of Social Lite Creative, journalist, and video host producer; Jane Sherman, Jewish philanthropist; Veronica Siegel, Jewish educator; Adeena Sussman, cookbook author and culinary consultant; Mandie Winston, CEO of United Jewish Israel Appeal.

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