The Jw Q&a

07/22/2014 | | Special To The Jewish Week | The JW Q&A

In May, David Blatt coached underdog Maccabi Tel Aviv to a thrilling Euroleague championship victory over Real Madrid in overtime. In June, the Cleveland Cavaliers hired Blatt as head coach. This month, LeBron James announced he was bringing his talents back home to the Cavs. There will be an enormous amount of pressure on Blatt, who has never coached an NBA game, but the reigning Euroleague Coach of the Year is no stranger to pressure. He was the first American to coach the Russian national team, leading them to a bronze medal in the 2012 London Olympics. In a phone interview from Las Vegas, where the NBA Summer League is taking place, the Massachusetts native, who played college ball at Princeton, professional ball in Israel, and coached in Europe for more than two decades, spoke about pressure, coming back to America, and his new team.

07/15/2014 | | Staff Writer | The JW Q&A

Avital Leibovich became director of the American Jewish Committee’s Jerusalem office after leaving the Israel Defense Forces in April following a nearly 23-year career. Leibovich served in a wide range of senior media and public relations positions within the IDF, including as the face of the IDF for the international community during two prior wars with Hamas in 2008 and 2012. She spoke to The Jewish Week Tuesday morning about the latest Gaza conflict.

07/08/2014 | | Staff Writer | The JW Q&A

Ofir Akunis is the Likud Party’s deputy minister for Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and a member of the Knesset. From 2010 until 2012, he served as the Knesset’s deputy speaker. In addition, Akunis, 41, has also served as both chairman and speaker of the Likud Party. He was interviewed last week during a visit here.

07/01/2014 | | Staff Writer | The JW Q&A

Jody Rabhan became director this week of the Washington operations of the National Council of Jewish Women (NCJW), succeeding Sammie Moshenberg, who retired after 33 years with the organization. Rabhan began her career two decades ago as a graduate fellow at the Baltimore Institute for Jewish Communal Service. She continued as a lobbyist for six years before pausing to start a family. She then worked as a private consultant for Jewish nonprofits, specializing in advocacy and development projects. Two years ago she returned as Moshenberg’s deputy. She and her husband have two sons and live in Bethesda, Md.

06/24/2014 | | Staff Writer | The JW Q&A

Jeffrey Richard of Riverdale is the new executive vice president of the American Technion Society, the national organization that supports the Haifa-based Technion-Israel Institute of Technology. Richard, 43, has more than two decades of fundraising experience, including serving as vice president of university development at Columbia University and as an associate director of the Combined Jewish Philanthropies in Boston. He spoke recently to The Jewish Week. This is an edited transcript.

06/17/2014 | | Staff Writer | The JW Q&A

Jay Feinberg, founder of the Gift of Life bone marrow registry, is a leukemia survivor who founded the registry after he received a successful bone marrow transplant in 1995. Feinberg, 45, of Boca Raton, Fla., was the inaugural recipient of the Charles Bronfman Prize in 2004. 

Feinberg’s mother, Arlene, who died in January at the age of 81, had organized 250 bone marrow match drives that tested 60,000 potential donors before a match was found for her son. In her memory, the Gift of Life Bone Marrow Foundation (giftoflife.org) will kick off a $4 million fundraising campaign with an online “virtual gala” June 22 at 7 p.m.