Podcast – Imagine Israel – Pluralism and Pizza
Tune in to The Jewish Federation of Greater Washington’s Imagine Israel Podcast, as part of Federation’s Imagine Israel initiative.
With every episode, meet innovative Israeli influencers addressing social and economic challenges in Israel. Robbie Gringras, Creative Director of Makom, hosts Federation’s Imagine Israel Podcast, facilitating thought-provoking dialogues with innovative Israelis to hear their story and learn how their life, work and passions intersect in a unique way to make a noticeable impact on Israeli society. focused on the intersection of their lives, work, passions and Israeli society.
Imagine Israel Podcast series connects Washington listeners directly to Israeli innovators, providing an opportunity to learn how Israeli activists are addressing social issues including disability inclusion, shared Jewish-Arab society, pluralism, LGBTQ community in Israel and more. The podcast will feature a breadth of thought leaders from DC and Israel, working in a wide variety of fields including filmmakers, NGO directors and CEOs, humanitarian aid workers and others.
Kaynan Rabino is the brain behind Good Deeds Day, an annual day of service that has flourished into an international phenomenon, currently reaching 75 countries—including the Greater Washington’s own Sara & Samuel J. Lessans Good Deeds Day. Rabino explains why the simple objective to change the world and positively impact the lives of others has garnered such a following, one good deed at a time.
Avner Stepak, former CEO of the second largest investment house in Israel, is revolutionizing Israel’s corporate world to include the previously overlooked disabled population in Israel’s workforce.
From the vantage point of the top floor at one of the largest investment firms in Israel, Avner Stepak (former CEO of Meitav Dash) saw his company was lacking a crucial component for success: inclusivity. Stepak recognized the value in the underemployed disabled population in Israel and he began to oversee the recruitment and hiring process for his investment house, reframing the company culture to welcome employees with disabilities.
After transforming his own investment house, Stepak set his sights on a new venture and in 2016—through a program of the Joint Distribution Committee, Israel’s Ministry of the Economy and the Ruderman Family Foundation—Stepak established Incorporate Israel. Incorporate Israel helps Israelis with disabilities join the corporate world by working closely with top staff at some of Israel’s biggest companies to fight against prevalent stigmas and raising awareness.
Visionary activist Chaya Gilboa, an expert on the issue of Israeli religious reform, shares her desire for social change in Israel. In a country where politics are religious and religion is political, Chaya strives to transform Israel’s restrictive religious judicial system by challenging institutionalized law to create a pluralistic, egalitarian alternative.
The compelling conversation addresses the conflicts and complexities that come with the current Rabbinical (Jewish governance) jurisdiction over issues of marriage, divorce and kashrut (Jewish dietary law); and Chaya’s approach to changing the system from outside of the Knesset (Israel’s Parliament).
Host Robbie Gringras interviews co-writer and director of the LGBTQ family drama “Ima v’ Abbas” (Mother and Fathers) about the intersection of his personal family dynamic in Israel (raising a child as a gay couple with a straight, single surrogate), his work, passions and Israeli society