Rabbi Dr. Ari Zivotofsky is a Professor in Bar-Ilan University’s Interdisciplinary Science Program where he studies and lectures on vision and ocular motility, as well as on cognitive sciences including perception, cognitive function, laterality, and ethics. He has also worked for more than 30 years collecting Jewish traditions from far-flung Jewish communities around the globe, and is also considered one of the world’s greatest experts in the laws and traditions of kosher and non-kosher animals. Together with his wife, he was the lead plaintiff in a lawsuit against the US government to recognize Jerusalem a city in the State of Israel. He has also been a tour guide in the City of David for the past ten years.
Laura BenDavid is a writer, photographer and pro Israel social media activist. Formerly the head of social media at Nefesh B’Nefesh, she is now a sought after marketing consultant and director of marketing & new media at Shavei Israel. She speaks to communities around the world concerning the three communities that Shavei Israel helps: the Bnei Menashe in India, the “Hidden” Jews of Poland, and Bnei Anousim in Spain, Portugal and South America. Originally from Monsey, New York, she made Aliyah from Boca Raton, Florida in 2002. Laura is the author of the book, MOVING UP: An Aliyah Journal.
As a rabbi and educator in Boca Raton, Florida, Rabbi Uri Pilichowski created the first teen pro-Israel advocacy group in America, teaching students to advocate in Congress for a stronger US-Israel relationship, work that he continues from Israel via Skype. He is the director of Israel Advocacy for Southern NCSY and teaches high school seniors Talmud, Bible and Israel Advocacy via Skype to Scheck Hillel Community School in Miami, FL.
Rabbi Pilichowski is the author of three books: a book on time management, on the weekly Torah portion and on the Jewish festivals. He has been a scholar in residence in synagogues across America, from Richmond, VA to Santa Barbara, CA.
Ariel Kotler was born in Israel and served in the IDF for 4 ½ years including two tours of duty in Lebanon and rose to the rank of Lieutenant Commander in the Intelligence Infantry. A tireless advocate for the land and people of Israel, Ariel has played a critical role in the development of the Negev as well as the modernization of Israel fire and rescue corps. Ariel regularly lectures around the world on behalf of the Jewish National Fund on issues related to Israeli Arts & Culture, Academic Perspectives on Israel and Jewish History, and Anti-Terrorism and Security.