👋 Good Friday morning!
In today’s Daily Kickoff, we interview Amb. Michael Herzog on our podcast, and report on yesterday’s first-of-its-kind White House convening for female Jewish leaders. Also in today’s Daily Kickoff: Amb. Dan Shapiro, David Rubenstein and Marie van der Zyl.
For less-distracted reading over the weekend, browse this week’s edition of The Weekly Print, a curated print-friendly PDF featuring a selection of recent Jewish Insider, eJewishPhilanthropy and The Circuit stories, including: Washingtonian Dana Hyde to be buried in Israel following tragic plane accident; McKinsey says it canceled sponsorship of Arab Conference at Harvard; Israel’s new diaspora affairs minister readies for battle against BDS movement; Senate Republicans claim Department of Education has funded antisemitic programs on college campuses; Jewish groups urge Supreme Court to change religious workplace accommodation standards; The Jerusalem rehab center providing community for alcoholics on Purim — and year-round; What’s so unusual about a Holocaust exhibition in Dubai?; and South African Jews create foundation to bring education tools to underprivileged youth. Print the latest edition here.
The Wall Street Journal reports that Saudi Arabia is asking the U.S. — which is working to help broker ties between Riyadh and Jerusalem — for security guarantees and assistance in building up a civilian nuclear program in exchange for publicly normalizing ties with Israel. The New York Times said that if implemented, the “deal could set up a major political realignment of the Middle East.”
The Times‘ report noted that key players in the talks include National Security Council’s Brett McGurk, energy envoy Amos Hochstein and Saudi Ambassador to the U.S. Princess Reema bint Bandar Al Saud. Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman is said to be involved in the negotiations. After communicating with U.S. and Israeli officials, Saudi leaders reached out to U.S.-based think tanks, according to a report from The Washington Institute’s Rob Satloff, who co-authored a report in November 2022 acknowledging that the Saudis he’d met with on a recent trip to Riyadh “bitterly noted what they believe was U.S. indifference to Saudi security concerns.”
Saudi-Israel relations were a primary topic at a House Foreign Affairs subcommittee meeting yesterday focused on the Abraham Accords. More below.
The Biden administration released its 2024 budget proposal yesterday — although the funding plan is likely dead-on-arrival in the Republican-controlled House of Representatives.
The proposal includes the creation of a new Middle East and North Africa Opportunity Fund, for which the administration requested $90 million in funding, an individual familiar with the budget told JI’s Marc Rod. The fund would “support U.S. engagement to navigate potential breakthroughs and challenges that can dramatically impact the region,” including the Negev Forum, as well as peacebuilding in Yemen, Libya and Syria, and democratization in Tunisia, the individual said. The administration also requested $50 million for the Middle East Partnership for Peace Act (MEPPA).
The budget also again requests $360 million for the Nonprofit Security Grant Program, in line with its request from last year, Angelo Roefaro, a spokesperson for Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer (D-NY), told JI. Congress ultimately appropriated $305 million for the program for 2023. Roefaro said Schumer had prioritized this request in budget discussions with the White House and that the White House also treated it as a priority.
The administration requested $3.3 billion in aid for Israel, in line with the 2016 memorandum of understanding, as well as $259 million for Palestinian aid, $1.45 billion for Jordan and $1.4 billion for Egypt.
The proposal also ups the administration’s overall defense funding request to $842 billion; Congress approved $816 billion for this year, well above the $773 billion the administration initially had requested.
Elsewhere on the Hill, today’s gathering of the Bagel Caucus will, regrettably for our Capitol Hill reporter, be closed to the press, Punchbowl News reports this morning.
Tens of thousands of entrepreneurs, musicians, gamers and creatives are descending on Austin, Texas, today for the annual SXSW conference. The gathering — which started as a music festival and has morphed into a massive, 10-day annual event focused on innovation and creativity — offers attendees an opportunity to learn, network and enjoy Texas barbecue. The event runs through March 19.
Tonight’s #OpenShabbat, a massive Shabbat dinner that will take place at a hotel ballroom next to Austin’s convention center, grew out of a kosher barbecue that Rabbi Mordechai Lightstone offered when he first went to the conference in 2010. Back then, his events drew only a couple dozen people. Now, with several hundred — Lightstone estimates 400 people will attend this year — kosher barbecue isn’t feasible; they’ll get a “taste of home” instead, said Lightstone, a Chabad rabbi and the founder of Tech Tribe.
Lightstone and his wife, Chana, also plan to host a meet-up at the conference called “Random Acts of Kindness.” The Monday morning session will feature an “idea hackathon,” Lightstone said, to “explore different ways people can incorporate giving into their lives.”
Amb. Michael Herzog: Strong U.S.-Israel relationship ‘requires a long-term strategy’
On this week’s episode of Jewish Insider’s podcast, Israeli Ambassador to the U.S. Michael Herzog joins co-hosts Rich Goldberg and Jarrod Bernstein. Herzog, who was appointed to the post in the summer of 2021 by then-Prime Minister Naftali Bennett and who has served under three prime ministers since coming to Washington, spoke about the Iran nuclear deal, the U.S.-Israel relationship and Israel’s judicial reform.
On U.S.-Israel relations vis-a-vis Iran: “When I arrived here 15 months ago, the U.S. was heading toward a nuclear deal with Iran, and actually got very close to a JCPOA [Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action] 2.0,” Herzog explained. “And, of course, there was a difference of opinion between our government and the U.S. government, and talking about the previous Israeli government, but of course, also the current Israeli government. I must say that in Iran, there’s no opposition coalition in Israel, there’s a broad consensus, and we were concerned that the U.S. is entering a weak deal, weaker even than the original 2015 JCPOA. So when I look at where we were then and where we are today, as I mentioned publicly, the deal is off the table for now — it’s not dead, but it is off the table for a variety of reasons. So taken together, this created an environment that does not lend itself to going back to a deal with Iran.”
On Americans weighing in on Israel’s proposed judicial reforms: “To me, it indicates that those people, almost all of them, deeply care about Israel,” Herzog said. “They’re entitled to their voices and thoughts and concerns, and their voices are heard back home. I have no idea how the debate over judicial reform will end. I know that there are behind-the-scenes efforts to bring about a solution, as I said, that most Israelis will feel comfortable with. And voices from America or from world Jewry are heard in Israel and people understand that. So, the only thing I tell people is, first, don’t be judgmental before there is an outcome… You want to raise concerns, questions or some warning, all is well, but be careful [in] the way you air it and don’t be judgmental before we reach a certain outcome that you can judge. The second thing…is that we are still surrounded by enemies and we are still subjected to a campaign of BDS, and our enemies do not distinguish between those who support judicial reform and those who oppose judicial reform, left and right, they just don’t want to ask to be there, and we have to be aware of [that].”
Bonus lightning round: Favorite Yiddish word or phrase? “Before I came here, a friend of mine told me, ‘There will be moments when you will be very upset, people will enrage you, and you’re a diplomat, you’re supposed to make keep a poker face,’ but there is when you are really upset with someone, there is a Yiddish saying, which I was taught as a young person by a family member, I will not name that family member, but that saying is, ‘mine tuchus aun deyn punim etsvay machatunim, my ass and your face are two machatunim (in-laws).’” Favorite guest for Shabbat dinner? “I recently had a Shabbat dinner with two members of Congress from opposing parties who never spoke to each other before they came to my home, and they spent three hours talking to each other about very important issues. So they were certainly favorite Shabbat guests.” Favorite Israeli wine? “My favorite Israeli wine is called Argaman. Argaman in Hebrew is a type of reddish color. We have a specific type of grape in Israel, which is unique only to Israel, nowhere in the world can you find it. It is called Argaman, and that wine is an excellent Israeli wine, which I like to serve my guests at Shabbat dinners.”
‘We all have a stake in this’: White House holds first-ever Jewish Women’s Forum
In the ornate Indian Treaty Room in the Eisenhower Executive Office Building in Washington, more than 70 Jewish women leaders gathered on Thursday to hear from Biden administration officials and nosh on hamantaschen to mark both International Women’s Day and Purim. There were many Washington veterans at the first-ever White House Jewish Women’s Forum. But there were also first-timers — college students and rabbis and influencers who had never before earned an invitation to one of the most exclusive addresses in the nation, Jewish Insider’s Gabby Deutch reports.
Purim pride: Thursday’s convening, the first time such an event has been held at the White House, brought together Jewish women from every major Jewish denomination and from across the country. It was just two days after Purim, and each attendee found a mishloach manot, or Purim gift, on her chair: a box of presidential Hershey’s Kisses and a card that read “Happy Purim” under the presidential seal.
Jewish learning: Attendees told JI it felt less like a political event than a learning opportunity, akin to a tight-knit group gathering for a talk from their rabbi on a Shabbat afternoon. But instead of a rabbi they heard an in-depth conversation with Second Gentleman Doug Emhoff. The event comes amid a White House effort to create a national plan on antisemitism, which Emhoff has championed. In his conversation, moderated by former White House speechwriter Sarah Hurwitz, Emhoff praised the officials working on the plan but called for a broader society-wide approach to antisemitism. “A plan is only a plan. We need to communicate this better. We need to reach younger people,” said Emhoff, who recently traveled to Poland and Germany to learn about the Holocaust and discuss antisemitism. “We need good solid counter-programming that’s positive and joyful and truthful and pushes back. Leaders need to call it out.”
Who’s who: The three-hour event also featured presentations from Ambassador Deborah Lipstadt, special envoy to monitor and combat antisemitism; Anne Neuberger, deputy national security advisor for cyber and emerging technology; and Rosie Hidalgo, senior advisor on gender-based violence and special assistant to the president. Mira Resnick, deputy assistant secretary of state for regional security in the Bureau of Political-Military Affairs, spoke about normalization between Israel and Arab nations.
on the hill
Saudi normalization, Israeli-Palestinian relations focus of Abraham Accords hearing
Efforts to facilitate the normalization of relations between Saudi Arabia and Israel and strategies for using the Abraham Accords to facilitate progress toward peace between Israelis and Palestinians took center stage at a House hearing focused on expanding the Abraham Accords on Thursday, Jewish Insider’s Marc Rod reports. The House Foreign Affairs Committee’s Middle East, North Africa and Central Asia Subcommittee heard testimony yesterday from Abraham Accords Peace Institute President Rob Greenway, former CENTCOM commander Gen. Joseph Votel and former U.S. Ambassador to Israel and Atlantic Council distinguished fellow Daniel Shapiro.
Saudi predictions: Hours before the hearing, The Wall Street Journalpublished a report that Saudi Arabia had asked for U.S. security guarantees, decreased restrictions on arms sales and assistance in developing its civilian nuclear program as specific preconditions for normalization with Israel. Shapiro suggested that Saudi-Israel normalization “cannot be divorced from the U.S.-Saudi relationship” and other U.S. interests. He added that the U.S. would likely seek its own concessions from Saudi Arabia, such commitments to stable oil markets and cooperation on Russia and China issues, in the event of such an agreement. Greenway likewise said that he concluded, while working on the National Security Council during the Trump administration, that “this was really about the Riyadh-Washington relationship and has a lot less to do with the relationship with Israel.” Public discussion of normalization, he added, “usually becomes detrimental.”
Free-trade focus: Greenway proposed the establishment of an Abraham Accords free-trade area and new overland trade routes connecting the Mediterranean and the Gulf; the creation of a fund to combat poverty and improve health, education and infrastructure; the establishment of a regional security architecture; and regional cooperation to offset European energy shortages brought about by Russia’s invasion of Ukraine. He later noted that a U.S. failure to engage in the region will open opportunities for China. Shapiro urged the creation of both a U.S.-led defense cooperative and a regionally led cooperative organization akin to the European Union or Association of Southeast Asian Nations that can facilitate multilateral cooperation “at every level in every area of governance,” potentially including a free-trade zone. Such an organization, he said, would incentivize new members to join the Abraham Accords and could act “in parallel” with the Negev Forum.
Home turf: Difficulties in securing Saudi normalization with Israel are also intimately tied to the Israeli-Palestinian conflict, the panelists said. “The Palestinian situation still does resonate in many of these countries,” Votel said. “This is a particular challenge in Saudi Arabia, I believe, because of their role as the custodian of the holy sites. And so this is more delicate for them. And as a result, it will take more time and more effort to work through that particular issue with the Saudis.” As part of a potential U.S.-brokered Saudi-Israeli normalization deal, Shapiro predicted that Saudi Arabia could also seek concessions from Israel related to the Palestinians, that Israel might seek greater U.S. security assistance and that the U.S. might seek Israeli steps to preserve the viability of a two-state solution.
Jewish House Dems urge Israeli leaders to ‘suspend’ efforts to pass judicial reform package
A group of 16 Jewish House Democrats wrote yesterday to Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, President Isaac Herzog and Opposition Leader Yair Lapid urging Israeli officials to halt efforts to pass a judicial reform package as currently constituted and to come together to negotiate a compromise, Jewish Insider’s Marc Rod learned exclusively.
Pump the brakes: “As members of the Jewish diaspora and friends of Israel, we are heartened by President Herzog’s calls for compromise, and we call on the government to suspend its efforts to pass the bills,” the legislators wrote in a letter obtained by JI. “We urge all parties to come together to fully consider the potential implications of the changes being debated in the Knesset and to negotiate fairly and openly so that a broadly acceptable resolution can be reached and Israel can continue to be the flourishing beacon of democracy we have long admired.”
Signatories: The letter was signed by lawmakers representing various factions of the Democratic Party, including both pro-Israel stalwarts and lawmakers who have historically been more critical of Israel policy. The signatories include Reps. Jerry Nadler (D-NY), Brad Schneider (D-IL), Becca Balint (D-VT), Suzanne Bonamici (D-OR), David Cicilline (D-RI), Steve Cohen (D-TN), Dan Goldman (D-NY), Sara Jacobs (D-CA), Greg Landsman (D-OH), Mike Levin (D-CA), Jamie Raskin (D-MD), Jan Schakowsky (D-IL), Kim Schrier (D-WA), Elissa Slotkin (D-MI), Debbie Wasserman Schultz (D-FL) and Susan Wild (D-PA). Nadler and Schneider organized the letter.
In practicing ‘patriotic philanthropy,’ David Rubenstein aims to educate Americans about their history
Speaking at the New Orleans Book Festival on Thursday, philanthropist and Carlyle Group co-founder David Rubenstein, who recently released How to Invest: Masters of the Craft, said he engages in “patriotic philanthropy” — efforts that have included funding the restorations of the Lincoln Memorial and Washington Monument, Hannah Levitan reports for eJewishPhilanthropy.
Backstory: “I also try to do a lot to give back to the country, what I call ‘patriotic philanthropy,’ which is to… remind people the history and heritage of our country,” Rubenstein said in conversation with Gary Ginsberg, author of First Friends: The Powerful, Unsung (And Unelected) People Who Shaped Our Presidents. “So I fixed the Washington Monument. Buy the Magna Carta, buy the Declaration of Independence and put it on display. Why? Well, because when people see these things in person, it makes them learn more about our country than they do.”
Career path: Rubenstein graduated from the University of Chicago Law School with the hopes of going into government and politics, he explained to Ginsberg. After graduating, Rubenstein served as advisor for lawyer Ted Sorensen, but soon realized he wasn’t suited for law. At 27, Rubenstein shifted his career focus and went to work as deputy domestic policy advisor for President Jimmy Carter. “You should experiment with many different things in your career, because it’s very unlikely that you’re going to find … what you want to do when you’re very young,” Rubenstein said. “More likely [than] not, you’ll experiment, you’ll find different things. And hopefully, by the age of your mid-30s, you’ll find the thing that you really want to do, and that will be your passion in life.”
Bonus: Rubenstein is slated to speak with UAE Ambassador to the U.S. Yousef Al Otaiba in a fireside chat titled “Building Bridges: A Discussion on the Abraham Accords” on Monday at the Israel Bonds’ International Leadership Conference in Washington.
🤝 Reaching a Compromise: In Foreign Affairs, Amos Yadlin suggests how Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu can compromise with the U.S. to obtain his top policy objectives. “Netanyahu does not have to join with Biden on every issue. The two politicians lead different countries with varied interests: sometimes their paths will diverge. Yet such differences are at play in almost every alliance based on shared values, and they usually do not preclude close cooperation. If Netanyahu can make tradeoffs with Washington, his and Biden’s disagreements do not have to impede their partnership… None of this will be easy. Netanyahu is faced with a political and strategic Rubik’s cube. To achieve his international goals — containing Iran and normalizing ties with Saudi Arabia — he will need strong support and understanding from Washington, which in turn requires taking steps opposed by his radical coalition partners both domestically and on the Palestinian front. But ultimately, to solve the most critical face of the cube, Netanyahu must prioritize coming to terms with the United States.” [ForeignAffairs]
❓ Bernie and the Ballot:New York magazine’s Gabriel Debenetti reports on Sen. Bernie Sanders’ (I-VT) potential reelection — or retirement — plans. “The truth is that Sanders has yet to convey anything solid to even his inner circle, a group of aides and allies who don’t doubt his commitment to doing the job, his pride at having reached this level of political influence, or his likely unwillingness to let it go voluntarily — but who are equally aware of his age. None of his close friends or advisers are pushing Sanders to do anything but run again, and they universally say he’s bursting with energy even in private. But none have forgotten his late-2019 heart attack. Sanders, who would be 89 at the end of his next term, won’t discuss his physical well-being with his staff or buddies, and gets frustrated when people ask — just as he has little patience for questions about the direction and leadership of the progressive movement in a post-Sanders era.” [NYMag]
👎 Veto Power: In the Washington Examiner, Tevi Troy explores the history of the presidential veto ahead of President Joe Biden’s anticipated first use of the tool, over environmental, social, and corporate governance (ESG) legislation. “The veto is a powerful tool, one of the most potent in the presidential toolbox. It is exceedingly hard to override, and therefore it is usually, but not always, the last word on the subject. Vetoes alienate Congress — [presidential historian John Robert] Greene said [George H.W.] Bush’s interplay with Democrats on the veto strategy created ‘a chain of legislative acrimony.’ This is something that Biden, as a long-standing former senator, is clearly aware of and may be part of his decision not to veto another bill disliked by Democrats: reducing penalties for crimes like carjacking in Washington. Vetoes also lose efficacy once overridden, revealing presidential weakness. The absences of Sen. John Fetterman (D-PA) and retiring Sen. Dianne Feinstein (D-CA) also complicate Biden’s calculus on this issue because he does not have a reliable Democratic majority in the Senate. Vetoing is a tool that enables weak presidents to try to set the terms of the legislative debate, but it is not costless to deploy. Ultimately, the veto is a negative weapon, preventing something from getting done rather than accomplishing something on its own. Wise leaders will use this tool to try and bring about accommodation rather than just a rejection of what the other side wants.” [WashingtonExaminer]
🧑🎤 On the Rise: The New York Times’ Jon Caramanica interviews Marwan Abdelhamid, a Jerusalem-born musical artist who records under the name Saint Levant, who grew up in Gaza before moving to Jordan, and then the U.S., and has built up a following on TikTok as he also looks to boost Palestinian entrepreneurs. “‘Not to say that music can’t push culture forward, but my impact will be felt 10 years down the line in economic development,’ he said. ‘My goal, my whole life, is to be the president of Palestine.’ He’s received resistance from some in the Arab world for his provocative subject matter, an echo of pushback he received in his prior life as an activist trying to engage in dialogue with Zionists. (‘I was 19,’ he said. ‘I’m not ashamed of what I did. I was trying to do something.’) ‘I don’t claim to represent a country, but I do it for my country. I do it for my people,’ Abdelhamid said. ‘I didn’t know that there was this many people that were trilingual, or that were lost in their identity.’” [NYTimes]
Around the Web
🆗 Moving Forward: Sen. Ron Wyden (D-OR) announced that he is lifting his hold on Michael Ratney, the nominee to be U.S. ambassador to Saudi Arabia, following a commitment by the administration to revoke visas from foreign officials who help foreign nationals evade prosecution in the U.S.
👨 Chuck’s Cloture: Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer (D-NY) filed cloture on Eric Garcetti’s nomination to be U.S. ambassador to India, teeing up a vote early next week.
🤕 On the Mend: Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY) will remain hospitalized for several days following a fall at a Washington, D.C., hotel in which he suffered a concussion.
🗳️ He’s Running (Again): Pennsylvania state Rep. Malcolm Kenyatta, who last year launched a failed bid for the state’s open Senate seat, announced he is running for state auditor general.
🏈 Teaming Up: Danaher Corporation co-founder Mitchell Rales is joining a group led by Josh Harris that is interested in purchasing the Washington Commanders.
📈 Banner Year for Hate: A new report by the Anti-Defamation League’s Center on Extremism found that incidents involving the distribution of leaflets by white supremacist groups hit a five-year high in 2022.
⚖️ Court Case: The California man accused of shooting two men as they left synagogues in Los Angeles last month pleaded not guilty to federal hate crimes charges.
🛂 Smotrich Sign-off: The State Department issued a visa to Israeli Finance Minister Bezalel Smotrich ahead of his upcoming trip to the U.S. next week, Axios’ Barak Ravid reports.
⚠️ Peacemaker: Israeli President Isaac Herzog criticized the government’s judicial overhaul proposals and called for the parties to reach a compromise, warning Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s government that if it chooses “to continue on the path you have followed so far — this chaos will be on your watch.”
🇮🇱 Terror Attack: Three people were injured in a terror attack on Tel Aviv’s Dizengoff Street on Thursday night; the assailant, a 23-year-old militant from the West Bank who was claimed by Hamas, was neutralized shortly after.
🇦🇪 UAE Moves: Sheikh Tahnoon bin Zayed Al Nahyan was announced as the new chairman of Abu Dhabi Investment Authority; his brother, Sheikh Mansour bin Zayed Al Nahyan, will chair the Mubadala Investment Co.
📰 Transition: Politico Executive Editor Dafna Linzer will depart the publication, which she joined last spring, at the end of the month.
🕯️ Remembering: Architect A. Eugene Kohn, who designed four of the 10 tallest buildings in the world, died at 92.
Pic of the Day
U.S. Ambassador to Israel Tom Nides visited the Kotel in Jerusalem earlier today, where he said he was “praying for the families of the terror victims in Tel Aviv last night.”
Member of Congress (D-NY) since 2021, Ritchie Torres turns 35 on Sunday…
FRIDAY: Long Beach, Calif., general surgeon, Leonard M. Lovitch, MD… Author and publisher of the Phoenix Scottsdale Jewish Friendship Trail Guidebook, Michael Alan Ross… Senior cryogenics engineer at Raytheon Missile Systems in Tucson, Lawrence Sobel… Founder and CEO of Cambridge, Mass.-based Pegasystems, Alan N. Trefler turns 67… CEO at two Israeli companies, Strategy3i Ltd. and Fluenzy, Jeffrey Kahn turns 65… Olympic gold medalist in gymnastics, he won four medals in the 1984 Summer Olympic Games and is a member of the International Jewish Sports Hall of Fame, Mitch Gaylord turns 62… Record producer, former co-president of Columbia Records and a co-founder of Def Jam Records, Frederick Jay “Rick” Rubin turns 60… Co-host of CNBC’s “Squawk on the Street,” David Faber turns 59… Executive director of the America Israel Friendship League, Wayne L. Firestone turns 59… Actor and son of novelist Norman Mailer, Stephen Mailer turns 57… Investigative reporter for The New York Times, Danny Hakim… Real estate agent on Bravo’s “Million Dollar Listing,” Josh Altman turns 44… Aliza Landes… Executive director at The Vandenberg Coalition, Carrie Filipetti… Actor and director, Sawyer Avery Spielberg turns 31… Editor-at-large of Mishpacha Magazine, Binyamin Rose…
SATURDAY: Professor emeritus at Princeton University whose research focused upon the Cairo Geniza and Jewish life in Muslim countries, Mark R. Cohen turns 80… Doctor of nursing practice, Hermine Warren… Office administrator at Creative Wealth Management in Islandia, N.Y., Glenda Kresh… Culinary writer, television host and novelist, Steven Raichlen turns 70… Suzanne Dreyfus… Academy Award-winning composer and conductor, David Louis Newman turns 69… Co-owner of One Oak Vineyard in Sonoma, Laura Zimmerman… Chairman of Lions Gate Entertainment and head of MHR Fund Management, Mark Rachesky turns 64… CEO of The Carlyle Group, Harvey M. Schwartz turns 59… College physician at Stony Brook University, internal medicine specialist, Richard E. Tuckman, MD turns 58… CEO of Weiss Public Affairs, Amy Weiss… Singer-songwriter, she also promotes an eponymous line of eyeglasses, Lisa Loeb turns 55… Entrepreneur-in-residence at Primera Capital and fellow at Bloomberg Beta, Jon Cohen… Northeast regional political advocacy director at AIPAC, Daniel Kochavi… Israeli singer-songwriter and pianist who has twice been recognized as Israel’s Singer of the Year, Keren Peles Toor turns 44… Managing director at Ridgewood Energy, Samuel J. Lissner… Co-founder and CEO of Flow Carbon, Dana Stern Gibber… Deputy director of Jewish communal engagement at J Street, Emily Kaiman turns 39… Financial advisor at Northwestern Mutual, Lev Beltser… Assistant director of Ramah Sports Academy, Ayala Wasser… Director of the Israel office at Britain Israel Communications and Research Centre, Richard Pater… President of JCS International, Michal Grayevsky… Principal and chief strategist at MCS Group, Sharon Polansky…
SUNDAY: Born in Venezuela, raised in Israel, now residing in Lakewood, N.J., Rabbi Yitzchak Abadi turns 90… Photographer, musician and author of 15 children’s books, Arlene Weiss Alda turns 90… Carol Margolis… U.S. Senator Mitt Romney (R-UT) turns 76… Director, producer and screenwriter, Rob Cohen turns 74… British sculptor born in Bombay, he won the 2017 Genesis Prize, Sir Anish Kapoor turns 69… Pitching coach who has worked for the Yankees, Reds, Braves, Marlins, Cubs and Padres, Larry Rothschild turns 69… Past president of AIPAC and the founder and CEO of R.A. Cohen & Associates, Robert A. Cohen… Former member of the Knesset for the Likud party, Ayoob Kara turns 68… Founder of Lone Pine Capital, Stephen Mandel turns 67… Sales representative at Paychex, Lynne Blumenthal… Senior official at the United States Holocaust Memorial Museum, Diane Saltzman… Senior attorney in the D.C. office of Squire Patton Boggs, Stacey Grundman… Sportscaster for ESPN and a host of “SportsCenter,” Steve Levy turns 58… Former president of the Central Bank of Brazil and now president of the Inter-American Development Bank, Ilan Goldfajn turns 57… U.S. Senator Tammy Duckworth (D-IL) turns 55… Chief Washington correspondent for CNN and host of the Sunday morning program “State of the Union,” Jake Tapper turns 54… Founder and CEO at Miller Strategies, Jeff Miller… VP of communications at the Alliance for Automotive Innovation, Brian T. Weiss… Founder and publisher of Fleishigs, a kosher food magazine, Shlomo Klein… Lead public affairs specialist at the Association of American Medical Colleges, Talia Schmidt… Senior Middle East analyst at Leidos, Aaron Magid… Founder and CEO of Serotonin and co-founder and president of Mojito, Amanda Gutterman Cassatt… CEO and co-founder of Wonder Media Network, Jennifer Manning Kaplan… Israeli figure skater who won the 2016 World Junior championship, he competed for Israel at the 2018 Winter Olympics in Pyeongchang, South Korea, Daniel Samohin turns 25… Israeli internet personality and singer with 5 million followers on TikTok, Anna Zak turns 22…