Bonei Zion Award recipients
Bonei Zion Award recipientsYonit Schiller

Nefesh B’Nefesh held its annual Sylvan Adams Bonei Zion Prize ceremony to honor the English-speaking Olim who have made a notable impact on Israeli society. The event was held at the Beit Ha’Am cultural center in Jerusalem with 500 people in attendance, including Co-Founders of Nefesh B’Nefesh, Tony Gelbart and Rabbi Yehoshua Fass, and Margaret Adams who represented the Adams family, who are the prize benefactors.

The honorees include: Rabbi Prof. David Golinkin, President of The Schechter Institutes, Inc. and President Emeritus of The Schechter Institute of Jewish Studies, in the field of Education; Prof. Arthur I. Eidelman, Founder of the Department of Neonatology at Shaare Zedek Medical Center, in the field of Science and Medicine; Pamela and Aba Claman, Co-Founders of Thank Israeli Soldiers, in the field of Community & Non-Profit; Prof. Morris Hartstein, Founding Director of Operation Ethiopia, in the field of Global Impact; and Prof. Harry Ben Zion Brand, Architect and Founder of the Israeli Planners Association, in the field of Culture, Art & Sports. In addition, the Young Leadership Prize was awarded to Asher Fredman, Director for Israel at the Abraham Accords Peace Institute, for his exemplary dedication and accomplishments as a young leader in Israel.

The Lifetime Achievement Award was given to Naomi Tsur, Founder & Chair of the Jerusalem Green Fund and the Israel Urban Forum, for her exemplary work over multiple decades in promoting sustainability in Israel and throughout the world.

In addition, Minister of Aliyah and Integration, MK Pnina Tamano Shata, received a special recognition award for her outstanding efforts and unwavering support for the entire Olim community during her tenure as minister as well as throughout her public life to date.

Sylvan Adams, a longtime benefactor of the Bonei Zion Prize, spoke about his admiration for the Bonei Zion recipients. “These extraordinary individuals serve as leaders in their local communities, in the State of Israel, and in the worldwide Jewish community. The contributions they have made in their respective fields are truly inspiring, and it is my honor to give them the recognition they deserve. I am confident that current and future Olim will continue making a positive impact on the Jewish state and the world.”

The evening also had several prominent figures in attendance which included Danna Azrieli, Chairwoman of the Azrieli Group; Deganit Sankar Langa, Director-General of the Ministry of Aliyah and Integration; Tal Brody, renowned basketball player and previous Bonei Zion recipient; Fleur Hassan-Nahoum, deputy mayor of Jerusalem; Michal Cotler-Wunsch, former MK and member of the Bonei Zion committee; Sivan Ya'ari founder and CEO Innovation: Africa; Barbara Goldstein, Deputy Executive Director of Hadassah in Israel; Erez Halfon, chairman of the Israeli Professional Football Leagues; Daniel Chaimovitz, president of Ben Gurion University and previous Bonei Zion recipient; Joseph Gitler, founder and chairman of Leket Israel and former Bonei Zion recipient; and MK Elazar Stern, Minister of Intelligence.

The 2022 recipients were chosen by a distinguished panel of committee members and represent excellence achieved in a variety of fields, including: Education; Science & Medicine; Community & Non-Profit; Global Impact; Culture, Art & Sports; Lifetime Achievement; and Young Leadership.

“There is no better way to celebrate the 20th anniversary of Nefesh B’Nefesh than by recognizing the incredible Olim who are continuously building the Jewish state,” said Tony Gelbart, Co-Founder and Chairman of Nefesh B’Nefesh. “The Bonei Zion recipients, and all of our Olim, are perfect examples of how the Zionist dream is thriving. These inspiring individuals serve as an excellent source of motivation to continue our work in facilitating Aliyah, advocating for Olim, educating Jewish people around the world, and celebrating the incredible successes that the Olim are continuing to achieve.”

"This is the ninth year of the Sylvan Adams Nefesh B’Nefesh Bonei Zion Prize, recognizing the tremendous contributions that Olim bring with them to Israel in a variety of fields,” said Minister of Aliyah and Integration, MK Pnina Tamano Shata. “The new Olim are the fuel for our national growth, and each one brings a unique story that adds light to the Israeli landscape. Together with Nefesh B’Nefesh, I cherish the Olim who come here, enhance its development, and continue to strengthen the Land of Israel as the home of the Jewish people. I would also like to thank Co-Founders of Nefesh B’Nefesh, Rabbi Yehoshua Fass and Tony Gelbart, dear philanthropist Mr. Sylvan Adams, and all the partners of the Bonei Zion award for their extensive work in supporting Aliyah and the State of Israel."

The 2022 Bonei Zion recipients include:

  • Rabbi Prof. David Golinkin, President of The Schechter Institutes, Inc. and President Emeritus of The Schechter Institute of Jewish Studies, in the field of Education.
  • Prof. Arthur I. Eidelman, Founder of the Department of Neonatology at Shaare Zedek Medical Center, in the field of Science and Medicine.
  • Pamela and Aba Claman, Co-Founders of Thank Israeli Soldiers, in the field of Community & Non-Profit.
  • Prof. Morris Hartstein, Founding Director of Operation Ethiopia, in the field of Global Impact.
  • Prof. Harry Ben Zion Brand, Architect and Founder of the Israeli Planners Association, in the field of Culture, Arts, & Sports.
  • Asher Fredman, Director for Israel at the Abraham Accords Peace Institute, for Young Leadership.
  • Naomi Tsur, Founder & Chair of the Jerusalem Green Fund and the Israel Urban Forum, with the Lifetime Achievement Award.
  • MK Pnina Tamano Shata, Former Minister of Aliyah and Integration, with the Special Recognition Award.

The following are the details of the 2022 Sylvan Adams Nefesh B’Nefesh Bonei Zion Prize recipients:

Education Award – Rabbi Prof. David Golinkin was born and raised in Arlington, Virginia. He earned a BA in Jewish History and two teaching certificates from the Hebrew University of Jerusalem. He received an MA in Rabbinics and a PhD in Talmud from the Jewish Theological Seminary of America, where he was also ordained as a rabbi.

Rabbi Prof. Golinkin is President of the Schechter Institutes, Inc., and President Emeritus of the Schechter Institute of Jewish Studies in Jerusalem. The Schechter Institutes provide pluralistic Jewish education to over 100,000 children and adults every year. At Schechter, he also serves as Founding Director of the Institute of Applied Halakhah, the Center for Women in Jewish Law, and the Midrash Project. For twenty years he served as Chair of the Va’ad Halakhah (Law Committee) of the Rabbinical Assembly, which writes responsa for the Masorti (Conservative) Movement in Israel.

In June 2014, Rabbi Prof. Golinkin was named by The Jerusalem Post as one of the 50 most influential Jews in the world. In May 2019, he was awarded an honorary doctorate by the Jewish Theological Seminary.

Rabbi Prof. Golinkin is the author or editor of 60 books and over 200 articles, and his current columns, Responsa in a Moment and Aseh Lekha Rav, are published via the Schechter websites. Rabbi Prof. Golinkin is married to Dr. Dory Rotnemer Golinkin, and they have seven children and twenty grandchildren.

Rabbi Prof. David Golinkin made Aliyah from Virginia in 1972.

Science and Medicine Award – Prof. Arthur I. Eidelman, received a BA and BHL from Yeshiva College, an MD from the Albert Einstein College of Medicine, and trained in pediatrics and neonatology at the Yale University School of Medicine. He served in the U.S. Public Health Service as Lieutenant Commander of the National Medical Consultant for the Division of Intellectual Disability. He established the Neonatal Intensive Care Unit at Jacobi Hospital and became the Director of Newborn Services and Assistant Director of Pediatrics at the Einstein College of Medicine.

In 1978, Prof. Eidelman established the first Department of Neonatology in Israel at the Shaare Zedek Medical Center. He is considered the “founding father” of neonatal medicine in Israel, setting the standards for the training and care of newborns. Prof. Eidelman became Chairman of the Department of Pediatrics at Shaare Zedek, Professor of Pediatrics at Ben Gurion University of the Negev and the Hebrew University School of Medicine, and he is a Visiting Professor of Pediatrics at Einstein. He has pioneered the development of care practices for newborns and infants worldwide.

Prof. Eidelman served as International Editor of the Journal of Perinatology and is the Editor-in-Chief of the official journal of the Academy of Breastfeeding Medicine. He is the co-lead author of an AAP Policy that sets the standards of practice for breastfeeding worldwide. Prof. Eidelman currently serves as the scientific coordinator and advisor to the Dream Doctors project of Medical Clowning, where he has pioneered the development of medical clowning as a paramedical specialty within the modern health care system. Prof. Eidelman is married to Arleen (nee Pilzer) and has four kids and nine grandchildren.

Prof. Arthur Eidelman made Aliyah from New York in 1978.

Community & Non-Profit Award – Pamela and Aba Claman are the co-founders of Thank Israeli Soldiers, an NGO dedicated to educating, embracing, and empowering Israel’s soldiers from the beginning of their service through transition into civilian life. Aba is an entrepreneur, attorney, philanthropist, and a graduate of UCLA and Harvard Law School. Pamela is a philanthropist and community volunteer dedicated to developing and supporting programs to help unite and inspire the Jewish People.

The idea for Thank Israeli Soldiers was inspired in 2001 when the Clamans delivered Rosh Hashanah dinner to soldiers on guard duty in their neighborhood. Since then, the organization has grown to include a soldiers’ center in the Old City, which hosts thousands of soldiers annually, as well as numerous strategic programs that have assisted tens of thousands of soldiers throughout their service, including educational programs to connect them with Israel’s history and heritage, care packages, and Shabbat experiences. In 2010, the Clamans created IDF MOMENTUM, a premier transition program that places an emphasis on post-army transition and has reached over 65,000 soldiers. In partnership with IDF Manpower, IDF MOMENTUM facilitated “Back to the Future,” an initiative that was awarded the 2021 Chief of Staff's Award of Excellence for innovative thinking.

Pamela and Aba are founding supporters of the international women's movement MOMentum, an organization that empowers women to change the world through Jewish values. They co-produced several films about the experience of IDF Soldiers, most notably, Beneath the Helmet and When the Smoke Clears. They have piloted an innovative environmental program through the Haredi school system.

Pamela Claman made Aliyah from Missouri in 1997, and Aba Claman made Aliyah from California in 2005.

Global Impact Award – Prof. Morris Hartstein, MD, FACS, is a Clinical Associate Professor of Ophthalmology at TAU School of Medicine, Director of Ophthalmic Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery at Shamir Medical Center, and the Founding Director of “Operation Ethiopia.”

In 2014, at his children’s suggestion, their family of six went to volunteer in the Jewish community of Gondar, Ethiopia. Shocked by the abject poverty and lack of medical care, Prof. Hartstein returned to Ethiopia the next year, and over a dozen times since, to personally provide eyecare to the Jewish community and beyond. He has examined and treated 7,000 patients, overseen 700 sight-restoring cataract surgeries, and distributed thousands of eyeglasses and medications. Prof. Hartstein has brought 18 Ethiopian Ophthalmologists to Israel for advanced training. Together with SSEJ, he established a feeding program for over 500 malnourished children in the Gondar Jewish community.

Prof. Hartstein was invited to join President Rivlin’s delegation of the first Israeli Presidential visit to Ethiopia in 2018 and has addressed several Knesset committee meetings regarding humanitarian suffering

in Ethiopia. In 2020 Prof. Hartstein joined Minister Pnina Tamano-Shata on a Diplomatic Mission to Ethiopia and accompanied new Olim back to Israel on the first Aliyah flight of Operation “Tzur Yisrael”.

A pioneer in his field, Prof. Hartstein lectures internationally, publishes widely, and his broad practice serves patients throughout Israel, including terror victims, Gazans, Hasidic leaders, Sudanese refugees, and more. Prof. Hartstein is married to Elisa, and they have four children, including three IDF soldiers.

Prof. Morris Hartstein, MD made Aliyah from Missouri in 2004.

Culture, Art & Sports Award – Prof. Harry Ben Zion Brand received a BA in Architecture from the University of Witwatersrand in Johannesburg, and later completed his diploma requirements in Town & Country Planning at the University of Durham in Newcastle and University College in London.

Prof. Brand has dedicated over 50 years to industrial development and planning within Israel. His contributions and innovations altered the Israeli architectural landscape, increasing accessibility, environmental protection, and worker productivity. He has played a significant role in the planning and building of some of Israel’s most important developments and infrastructures, including the Osem Headquarters and Logistic Center, Tefen Industrial Park, the Caesarea Business Park, the Jerusalem Technology Park, the Beck Science Center in Jerusalem, Nazareth Incubator Park, and many more.

Prof. Brand founded the Israel Association of Planners, where he served as its first chairman, pioneered the accreditation of architectural schools on behalf of the Council for Higher Education, and served as a professor at the Technion architectural school. Prof. Brand has chaired and served on various committees in the industry, and his architectural and industrial work is displayed in various exhibits around the world. Prof. Brand is married to Eva, and they have four children and ten grandchildren. Prof. Brand is proud of his daughter, Eila, also an architect, who currently runs the office, and her daughter, Kylie, who is an architectural student at the Technion.

Prof. Harry Ben Zion Brand made Aliyah from South Africa, via England, in 1962.

Young Leadership Award – Asher Fredman serves as Director for Israel at the Abraham Accords Peace Institute, a non-profit, non-partisan US organization dedicated to strengthening and expanding the historic Abraham Accords. He holds a BA and MA from Harvard University in Government and Middle Eastern Studies and served as a Lone Soldier in the IDF.

He is the Founder of the Israeli-Emirati Forum, a grassroots platform bringing together Israelis, Emiratis and Bahrainis from diverse backgrounds. He previously founded Gulf-Israel Green Ventures, which focused on connecting the Israeli and Gulf climate-tech ecosystems.

Asher is a Fellow at the Kohelet Policy Forum, specializing in international relations, and a consultant and writer for several of Israel’s senior public figures.

Asher spent nine years in the Israeli Government, as Chief of Staff to Israel’s Minister of Strategic Affairs, Senior Coordinator for International Affairs at the Ministry of Strategic Affairs, and in the National Communications Directorate of the Prime Minister’s Office. In these roles, he worked on strengthening Israel’s public diplomacy and countering the anti-Israel delegitimization and BDS campaigns. He also served as International Affairs Advisor to Israel’s Public Security Minister, where he focused on international cooperation in combatting terror and incitement. Asher is married to Ester, and they have four children.

Asher Fredman made Aliyah from New York in 2008.

Lifetime Award – Naomi Tsur was born in Bristol, England, and received her BA in Archaeology and Classics from the Hebrew University and studied towards an MA in Indo-European Linguistics.

Naomi has led countless green projects within Jerusalem and throughout the country. As director of SPNI Jerusalem, she successfully protected the Jerusalem Hills from unsustainable urban sprawl. Naomi led the campaign to establish Israel’s first nature park, the Gazelle Valley, inaugurated the Railway Park, and established the Sustainable Jerusalem Coalition.

Among her many achievements as Deputy Mayor of Jerusalem (2008 – 2014), Naomi opened up municipal committees to increase public transparency, implemented plans to preserve historical and environmental landmarks, helped design bike lanes in and around the city and promoted dialogue with Palestinians in an effort to treat the sewage flow in the Kidron Basin. Naomi established a new NPO in 2015, the Jerusalem Green Fund, a cooperative philanthropy, as well as the Sustainable Jerusalem Lobby, in which dozens of organizations work together towards a healthier, cleaner and greener Jerusalem.

Since 2014, Naomi has stood at the head of the Israel Urban Forum, working in collaboration with UN-Habitat and the Israeli Government to improve the quality of urban living. In 2021 the IUF hosted the 3rd Akko Convention on Urbanism.

Naomi lectures on urban sustainability around the world. She has received international recognition, including a certificate of appreciation from the Ministry of Education for contributing to building an exemplary society in Israel, in honor of the country’s 70th anniversary. Naomi was married to Haim z”l, a well-known violinist, journalist, and composer, and has four children and fourteen grandchildren.

Naomi Tsur made Aliyah from England in 1966.

Special Recognition Award – MK Pnina Tamano Shata, Minister of Aliyah and Integration, was born in Ethiopia in 1981 and moved to Israel in 1984 during “Operation Moses”. She began her public service in 2000, when she led an initiative to improve the situation of Ethiopian Jews in Israeli society, and among other things became a prominent voice against discrimination and advocating for equality.

In 2016, she was awarded the Unsung Hero Award for over a decade of activism in her role as a Member of Knesset. She was also a recipient of the IFCI award for her leadership in changing policy regarding the reduction of social gaps in Israeli society. In addition, she was recognized as one of the top 100 influential Israelis by The Marker magazine and in 2021 received the Begin Award for Israeli Leadership on behalf of her work for disadvantaged populations in Israel.

With the formation of the 35th government, MK Tamano Shata was appointed Minister of Aliyah and Integration, becoming the first Ethiopian woman to serve as a minister in the Israeli government and subsequently in Israel’s 36th government. As part of her role as minister, she led a variety of unprecedented achievements, including the Olim Habayta operation which rescued over 55,000 Ukrainian and Russian Jews in response to the Russian invasion; Operation Tzur Israel which approved the emigration of 5,000 people in Ethiopian camps; the Aliyah of over 800 men and women from the Bnei Menashe community of India; the removal of significant barriers facing new medical professional Olim; the reform to expand eligibility for Hebrew language learning studios; and the establishment of a support center for Olim in multiple languages. During the pandemic, she also launched an economic emergency program for new Olim.

During her two-and-a-half-year term, MK Tamano Shata was responsible for the Aliyah of 105,000 newcomers from around the world, a historic record in the last two decades of Israel’s history. She is the proud mother of two children and lives in Petah Tikvah.