ACRI’s Board of Directors is elected every two years by ACRI’s members, and includes leading figures from the fields of law, academia, civil society and the media, who represent a range of population groups and constituencies and who volunteer their time and expertise. The Board of Directors meets every four to six weeks and receives progress reports from ACRI’s senior management. The Board shapes ACRI’s policies and strategy, determines policies and priorities for ACRI’s professional staff, provides guidance and feedback on ACRI’s programming, and approves operational guidelines, work plans and budgets. The Board of Directors discusses and approves the organization’s annual work plan and budget. ACRI also has a Finance Committee, comprised of three members, all also unpaid volunteers.
Mr. Sami Michael (President) – A native of Baghdad, Mr. Michael is one of Israel’s most beloved writers and a champion of human rights. As President of ACRI’s Board of Directors, he volunteers his time to represent the organization. Mr. Michael is the recipient of numerous literary prizes and honorary doctorates in Israel and abroad. In 2007, the Prime Minister’s Office and the A.M.N. Foundation awarded Mr. Michael the Emet Prize for Arts & Culture, a prestigious prize for individuals who have made outstanding contributions to Israeli society. For more on Mr. Michael, click here.
Members of the Board
Dr. Gila Stopler (Chair) – Lecturer on Constitutional Law and Human Rights at The College of Law and Business in Ramat Gan. Dr. Stopler received her PhD from New York University, where she wrote her dissertation about the conflict between women’s rights and religion and culture. Prior to that she served for several years as an attorney at ACRI, where she also completed her legal internship.
Dr. Merav Alush-Levron – Lecturer at the Department of Film and Television of Tel Aviv University and at the School of Communication at the Interdisciplinary Center of Herzliya. Dr. Alush-Levron completed her doctoral studies with distinction at the Department of Political Science and Communication of Bar-Ilan University. Her fields of expertise include: representation of different sectors in the media, visual communication, multiculturalism, Israeli cinema, and contemporary political theory.
Ms. Rachel Amram – Feminist activist, and peace & co-existence activist. Ms. Amram is a member of Tarbut, a joint Arab-Jewish movement promoting justice & equality and opposing discrimination and a member of the Israel Association for Feminist and Gender Studies. She was mong the founders of the Coalition of Women for Peace, and of Noga, a feminist quarterly published between 1980 and 2005. Ms. Amram holds a Master’s in Public Policy and Conflict Resolution from a Feminist Viewpoint from the University of Pittsburgh, and a Certificate in Peacebuilding and Human Rights from American University in Washington D.C.
Mr. Zohar Avitan – Director of the preparatory programs at the Sapir Academic College in Ashkelon, and a PhD. candidate in Political Science at Tel Aviv University. He holds a Master’s in Political Science and a Master’s in Public Policy. Mr. Avitan serves as the Chairperson of the Sderot Cinematheque, and as the Chairperson of the national committee of directors of preparatory programs in institutions of higher education. Between 1989 and 2003 he served as a City Council member of the southern town of Sderot, and has been a social activist for many years.
Mr. Elad Benbaji – currently the CEO of a hedge fund. In the past, he was Director of the capital markets, banking and insurance department at the Israel Antitrust Authority. Prior to that, he was a communications reporter for the “Seventh Eye” website, and the legal correspondent for the “Jerusalem” local newspaper. Mr. Benjabi has an M.B.A. and a law degree.
Mr. Roman Bronfman – Former Member of Knesset, former journalist, and an activist for improving immigration absorption. Ukranian-born, immigrated to Israel in 1980. He holds a PhD in Political Science from the Hebrew University in Jerusalem. From 1993 to 1996 he served as a member of the Haifa City Council, and from 1992 to 1996 as Deputy Chairman of the Zionist Forum. He was a Member of Knesset for a decade: representing the Yisrael BaAliyah party from 1996 to 1999, the Democratic Choice party from 1999 through 2003, and Meretz from 2003 through 2006.
Professor Aeyal Gross - Law professor at Tel Aviv University whose research focuses primarily on human rights in the context of the Israeli occupation of the Palestinian Territories, on social rights (and particularly on the right to health), and on discrimination on the basis of sexual orientation and gender identity. Professor Gross is a longtime ACRI member, and served on the Board also from 1998 through 2007. In the past he also served on the Board of Gisha – the Legal Center for Freedom of Movement, and has served on a voluntary basis as the Legal Advisor to the Israeli LGBT Association.
Attorney Zaki Diab – Partner at the law office of Schneorson & Co. where he has specialized in insurance litigation. Mr. Diab has a L.L.B. and an MBA from The Hebrew University in Jerusalem, and holds a LLM degree from the University of Pennsylvania Law School. He also received a Certificate in Business and Public Policy from the Wharton school at the University of Pennsylvania. He serves as a board member of Kav Mashve, a non-profit organization which promotes equal employment opportunities for Arab university graduates within the Israeli business sector. He is also a member of the young partners’ forum of the “Collective Impact” initiative, a group committed to integration of more Arabs into the work force in all sectors of employment.
Dr. Adriana Kemp – Senior lecturer in Tel Aviv University’s Department of Sociology & Anthropology and a Fellow at the Van Leer Institute in Jerusalem. Her research focuses on the sociology of migrant workers, on globalization, and on civil society organizations, and is active in organizations promoting refugees’ and migrant workers’ rights. She served on the board of Kav LaOved – Worker’s Hotline from 2001 through 2004, has volunteered for the Hotline for Refugees and Migrants since 2006, and in 2007-2008 was the academic consultant of the Program for Refugee Rights at Tel Aviv University.
Ms. Etty Kenny – Volunteer with ACRI’s Public Hotline for over a decade. Ms. Kenny possesses vast professional experience in Management Consulting and Human Resources, and has volunteered her time and expertise for a wide range of causes and organizations. She was Director of the Tel Aviv branch of Eran – Emotional First Aid by Telephone and Internet, and was instrumental in establishing an emergency telephone hotline for the Israel AIDS Task Force. She serves on the board of Muzot High School of the Arts for at-risk youth, on the board of the Herzliya Museum, and on the Public Council of the Bat Sheva Dance Company.
Professor Abd ElFatakh Muhammad Nassar – Professor of Ecology at the Beit Berl College. He is also director of the laboratory for the study of water quality and microbiology at the Ministry of Health.
Ms. Ruti Yovel – Senior Figure in the Israeli Press and Media, had held diverse roles in the media and press since 1981. Ms. Yovel was Co-Editor-in-Chief of the daily newspaper Maariv, and served as Editor of “7 Days,” the weekly magazine of the daily newspaper Yedioth Ahronoth. She was also editor of “Ulpan Shishi,” the Friday night edition of the Channel Two news, and editor of the Friday magazine of the Channel Ten news. She currently produces documentary films. Throughout her long career in journalism, she placed particular emphasis on individual rights, due to a belief that the press has a central role in protecting the citizen’s power vis-à-vis the establishment and the rich and powerful.
Mr. Uri Zaki – Israel Advocacy & Public Outreach Consultant at Human Rights Watch. Mr. Zaki has a L.L.B. from the Hebrew University in Jerusalem, and is working on a Master’s of Law in Human Rights Law from the Takkanah L.L.M. Program at The College of Management – Academic Studies in Rishon LeZion. From 2009 through 2013 he was the Director of B’Tselem USA, and was responsible for B’Tselem’s advocacy vis-à-vis Congress, the U.S. Government, human rights organizations, the media and the American Jewish community.