Presenters

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Over 50 accomplished, exciting and diverse presenters, giving over 70 sessions, will be part of Limmud FSU Canada 2018.
Rami Sherman

Rami Sherman

IDF Commando Officer, team member of Operation Entebbe

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On the ground at Entebbe – a rescue missing like no other

In 1976, when an Air France plane was hijacked with 248 passengers and rerouted to Entebbe, Rami was the Operations Officer of the unit, under the command of Yoni Netanyahu. The operation took place at night. Israeli transport planes carried 100 commandos 4,000 km to Uganda for the rescue operation. Rami was part of the 33 officers and soldiers who freed the hostages at the Entebbe terminal. The operation, which took a week of planning, lasted only 90 minutes. In this session, Rami shares his amazing story and what he learnt about identity, mutual responsibility, and lessons that we can all use today.

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Rami Sherman was born on Israel and grew up on Kibbutz Lehavot Habashan. In 1976, when an Air France plane was hijacked and rerouted to Entebbe, Rami was the Operations Officer of the unit, under the command of Yoni Netanyahu. Along with his team, Rami was involved in both the planning and rescue mission. Upon returning to Israel, Rami continued to serve in the unit, was a Special Operations Commander, and later worked in reserves. Rami is married, has two daughters five grandchildren. He lives with his family on Kibbutz Ma’agan Michael. He studied physiotherapy at the University of Tel Aviv, and has worked as a physiotherapist in various positions, including, among other things, as a physiotherapist for the Israeli Olympic team.
Anat Yahalom

Anat Yahalom

Yom Kipur War veteran, founder of Edgarim and Forum for disabled IDF female veterans

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Rising Back to Life

An incredible life story focusing on leadership and overcoming. On Yom Kippur 1973, out of the blue, a sudden Egyptian air attack tore my body and my life apart… It was the first day of a terrible war. I was an eighteen year old combat soldier who had just graduated from high school, critically wounded fighting to stay alive. Putting my life back together has turn into a gift. Let me share it with you.

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Anat served in IDF as Operations Coordinator for combat forces at the Suez Canal. She was critically wounded in the Yom Kippur War of 1973, was extracted under heavy fire and brought to hospital where doctors fought for her life. Anat lost her ability to walk and was stranded in a wheelchair for many years. She got married and started a family, she has three sons.

Gradually, Anat learned to walk again. Her disability and rehabilitation process introduced her to the world of disabled sports, and she became a professional hand-cyclist. She participates in marathons in Israel and abroad with other pro-cyclists of the Israel National Team.

Anat has a Bachelor of Education and Arts. She is a founding member of Etgarim, Israel Association for the Disabled, and Forum for disabled IDF female veterans, an organization dedicated to fighting for the rights of disabled IDF female veterans. She is a recipient of the prestigious Israel Defense Award for excellence in rehabilitation efforts, 2018.

Yelena Khanga

Yelena Khanga

Journalist, TV Personality, Author

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Secrets of Russian TV from an Insider

Yelena is one of the most famous Russian TV celebrity. Since 1993 she hosted dozens of project at several national broadcast channels. Learn more about “kukhnya” of Russian TV from the insider.

Prime minister of Zanzibar and Khiam Byalik. History of my family 1865-1992

Yelena Khanga is a descendant of american slave, famous Jewish writer Khaim Byalik, prime-minister of Zanzibar and polish Rabbi. Join the amazing journey to history one of the most diverse family in the World.

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Russian journalist of African/Jewish/African-American ancestry raised in Moscow, USSR, who came to the USA in 1990 to write Soul to Soul: The Story of a Black Russian American Family: 1865–1992. Khanga was the moderator of the Russian television talk show The Domino Effect. She also moderated Russia’s first talk show about sex, called About That.
Yishai Fleisher

Yishai Fleisher

Hebron Community Spokesperson, Israeli media broadcaster

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A Settler’s Vision for the Future of Israel

Now that the Oslo process has failed and most Israelis don’t believe in the “Land for Peace” formula – is there a path going forward? While alternatives are out there, they have been repressed by the dominant paradigms and the establishment – but now their moment has arrived. Join a cutting-edge discussion about 5 serious alternatives to the “Two-State Solution”.

Hebron – Ground Zero of the Conflict

On the one hand, Hebron is an ancient and beautiful city, rich with history integral to Jewish identity – here the Founding Fathers and Mothers of Israel lived and died. On the other hand, Hebron is ground zero for the Israel-Arab conflict, with parts of the international community undermine the 3,500-year-old Jewish presence in the city and calling it an “Occupation.” Does history hamper our way forward? Or can the past guide us towards a better future?

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Rabbi Yishai Fleisher is the International Spokesperson for the Jewish community of the Biblical Hebron – the site of Tomb of the Forefathers and Mothers, and a Middle East hotspot. Yishai is also an Israeli broadcaster on the Land of Israel Network and a frequent columnist for Breitbart, Jerusalem Post, and the NYTimes, and has been featured on CNN, Al Jazeera, Fox, Vice, BBC, and more. He holds a JD from Cardozo Law and rabbinic ordination from Kollel Agudat Achim.
Boris Gulko

Boris Gulko

Chess Grandmaster, writer

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Шахматы и Каббала

Связь дерева сфирот, мышления шахматиста и шахматной борьбы. Каббалистические правила чемпионов мира. Каббала шахмат и реальный мир ( на примере шахматных партий).

Мир против евреев (о Холокосте)

Мир свалил всю вину за Холокост на немцев, которые – самые виноватые, но не только они виноватые. Соучаствовали все.

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Boris Gulko is psychologist by education, chess Grandmaster. Boris was champion of Soviet Union in 1977, and champion of the United States in 1994 and 1999. Boris was one of eight candidates for the match with the world champion in 1994, and one of 16 competitors for this title in 2000. He won many national tournaments in the United States and the USSR, as well as international tournaments around the world. Boris has a positive score with great world champion Gary Kasparov: three wins, one loss, and four draws.From 1979 to 1986 Boris was a refusnik. He won the right to leave the USSR after three hunger strikes and months of daily demonstrations with daily arrests (together with his wife Anna, who was women chess champion of Soviet Union and the United States). Boris reflected this struggle for freedom in his book “Writing the Letter Lamed” that became part of the collection “KGB is playing chess” first published in Russia and later translated and published in the United States, Germany and other countries.In 2009 Boris started to write essays on various topics, including modern politics, culture, religion, history, and Jewish philosophy. His selected essays were published in book “The World of a Jew” in Russian. Boris is currently a columnist for several Russian language Jewish newspapers.  
Matthew Bronfman

Matthew Bronfman

Entrepreneur, philanthropist, and Chair of the Limmud FSU International Steering Committee

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Panel: How to become successful by Giving

The concept of Tzedaka, or Charitable Giving, has been the cornerstone of the Jewish tradition for more than 3,000 years. In this panel, Matthew Bronfman and Harry Rosenbaum, two of the most successful entrepreneurs in North America today, will discuss why Giving has been such a big part of their success story. Moderated by Eli Ovits.

Opening Ceremony, Gala

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Matthew is Chair and CEO of BHB Holdings, an investment company. He is a controlling shareholder in Supersol, Israel’s largest supermarket chain and the IKEA franchise in Israel. In addition to Limmud FSU, his philanthropic interests include chairman of the American Jewish Committee; chair of Teamwork Foundation; and a member of the board of the 92nd Street Y. He received a BA from Williams College and an MBA from Harvard Business School.
Bernd Wollschlaeger

Bernd Wollschlaeger

Family physician, author of books on German life in WWII

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A German Life: Against All Odds Change Is Possible

In this intimate talk, Dr. Bernd Wollschlaeger will share his remarkable story of growing up in post-war Germany as the son of a highly decorated World War II German tank commander, recipient of the Iron Cross, personally awarded to him by Hitler. At an early age, Bernd discovered that his parents were concealing their past. Driven by curiosity and interest in finding the truth about the past and the Holocaust, Bernd explored Israel and Judaism through literature, a series of personal encounters with Jews in post-war Germany and finally a journey to Israel. These experiences led Bernd to convert to Judaism and make Aliyah.

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Bernd Wollschlaeger is a board-certified family physician in private practice in Aventura, FL. He received his medical education in Germany and Israel and completed his residency training at Jackson Memorial Hospital, Miami, FL. Dr. Wollschlaeger also serves as a Clinical Assistant Professor of Family Medicine at the University of Miami School of Medicine, The Florida International and the Florida State University College of Medicine.

Dr. Wollschlaeger is also a book author, and his book “A German Life: Against All Odds Change is Possible” describes his struggle growing up in Germany in the shadow of his Father, a highly-decorated WWII tank commander and Nazi officer. He eventually converted to Judaism, emigrated to Israel and served in the Israel Defense Forces as a Medical Officer. In Spring 2013 he will release his novel “Samson’s Shadow” and in Summer 2013 his book “ Stauffenberg: My Live in the Shadow of a Hero.”  

Ben Rosenfeld

Ben Rosenfeld

American Comedian

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Late night comedy show by Ben Rosenfeld

Ben Rosenfeld performs an hour of stand up comedy focusing on his growing up as a young Russian Jew in America

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Ben Rosenfeld creates smarter comedy for smarter people. Ben’s comedy blends his family’s experience as Russian Jewish immigrants in America with his philosophical beliefs, political observations and unique characters. Ben has appeared on FOX’s Laughs, CBS This Morning, National Geographic’s Brain Games, NPR Weekend Edition, SiriusXM Radio, The New York Post, Rooftop Comedy and been featured as TimeOut New York’s Joke of the Week. He has twice headlined at Caroline’s on Broadway, hosted at the Lincoln Center and performs nightly in New York City. Ben has three comedy albums: the iTunes #1 best selling comedy album The United States of Russia (2018 – iTunes – released by Comedy Dynamics), the Amazon Top 5 best selling comedy album The Russian Optimist (2016 – iTunes | Amazon | Google Play – released by Comedy Dynamics / New Wave Entertainment) and Neuro Comedy (2012 – iTunes | Amazon ). Ben also created the illustrated coffee table book, Russian Optimism: Dark Nursery Rhymes To Cheer You Right Up, an Amazon Top 5 best seller in humor books.
Elliott Malamet

Elliott Malamet

Israeli professor, Jewish philosophy and spiritual educator

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Does Morality depend on Religion?

Is morality entirely subjective? If so, can we say anything authoritative about right and wrong, or are good and evil merely a matter of personal taste? Must ethics be grounded in God to be universal? Does Judaism recognize reason as a viable alternative to faith? This session will discuss practical dilemmas in constructing one’s own moral positions, and also in transmitting them to children.

What We Talk about when We Talk about God

The “black box” of religion relates to the question of who God is and how God operates in the universe. Is God aware of human actions? Does God change? Intervene in history? Listen to our prayers? Talk to us daily? Care about the world? Love me? How we envision God will tell us a great deal about how we think God interacts with the world and hence what is the meaning of our spiritual lives. In this talk, we will compare the views of central Jewish thinkers in pursuit of these questions.

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Dr. Malamet is currently the Chief Ideas Officer and Director of Programming at Living Jewishly, a new Toronto based organization that aims to create culture of dialogue, diversity and sophistication for those seeking spiritual and intellectual meaning out of their Judaism.

Dr. Malamet received his doctorate in English Literature from the University of Toronto, has taught Jewish Philosophy in Canadian universities for over 20 years, and was the Department Head of Jewish Thought at TanenbaumCHAT secondary school. He currently lectures in Israel at the Hebrew University of Jerusalem and many other Israeli institutions.

Dr. Malamet’s work in the field of spiritual education has been featured in the leading Canadian newspapers and he has appeared on Canadian radio and television. He has run seminars on teaching Judaism to young people in the United States, Canada, England and Israel and is consulted by people worldwide on the subject of Jewish education.

His rational approach is responsible for creating a sense of emotional and spiritual connection that attracts individuals to lead an informed, meaningful and inspirational life, underpinned with Jewish values.

David Shore

David Shore

Canada Director of Investor Relations for OurCrowd

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OurCrowd in Canada, Israeli innovation success and start-up nation

This session will discuss how OurCrowd, an equity crowdfunding platform built for accredited investors to provide venture capital funding for early-stage startups, is fueling Israeli and global technology innovation. OurCrowd uses equity crowdfunding as its model, where investments into a company’s shares are pooled together from the crowd. David will also compare the Canadian and Israeli tech eco-systems, with lessons for Canadian entrepreneurs.

OurCrowd was started in 2013 in Jerusalem, Israel by serial entrepreneur Jon Medved. Today, OurCrowd is a leading equity crowdfunding platform for investing in global startups. Offering unprecedented access to startup investing, individual investors through OurCrowd are fueling innovations that change the way people work, travel, shop, heal, and conduct business. OurCrowd investors participate in these opportunities alongside VCs and institutional co-investors, at the same terms.

Panel: The Art of Pitching To Investors – Show us what you’ve got!

The investment process can be like being transported to a parallel universe. Not only must you understand the process, but you must deal with someone poking and prodding your baby. Even though having capital is essential to growing your business, the process seems like a distraction from the business. In this workshop, we arm with you the perspectives not only to take on the process but to influence the process to your benefit.

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David serves as Director of Investor Relations in Toronto, breaking new ground for OurCrowd and startup investing in Canada. Prior to OurCrowd, David was a venture capitalist, angel investor and top ranked equity analyst at Mackie Research, CIBC, and Desjardins. As the Managing Director of Terracap Ventures, David developed the firm’s overall corporate strategy. David also served as Head of the Technology Group for Mackie Research Capital in the Equity Research department covering Software & Media sectors. David was consistently ranked as a leading technology analyst (software) in Canada, and prior to joining Mackie Research Capital worked at leading financial institutions, including Desjardins, CIBC World Markets, and First Marathon. David ‘s operational experience includes roles as CFO at several startups including Cavet and Beam Networks. David sits on the Advisory Board of the Canadian Innovation Exchange and also serves as an Advisor to Charity Bids. Additionally, David was a board Director at Sarda Technologies and Helix Medical Systems and recently joined The Next 36 as an advisor.  
Rafi Hofstein

Rafi Hofstein

President and CEO of MaRS Innovation

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Israeli and Canadian Biomedical Innovation and everything in between

In this session, Dr. Hofstein will share his thirty years of experience as a scientist turned healthcare entrepreneur in Israel and in Canada, along with examples of successful (and less so) outcomes. Dr. Hofstein will share his perspective on how Israel became startup nation and why Canada is at the cusp of becoming one, and some observations on how the two countries can rule the international biomedical innovation agenda.

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Dr. Raphael Hofstein is a President and CEO of MaRS Innovation. He is member of the board of directors of Life Science Ontario and of Clinical Trials Ontario, as well as a member of the Organizing Committee of the Public Policy Forum on Venture Capital and Innovation (part of the Quebec City Conference) and part of the Ontario Health Innovation Council (OHIC).

Dr. Hofstein received his PhD and Master of Science degrees in Life Sciences and Chemistry from the Weizmann Institute of Science in Rehovot, Israel. His Bachelor of Science degree in Chemistry and Physics is from the Hebrew University in Jerusalem.

From 1997 to 1999 Dr. Hofstein was President of Mindsense Biosystems Ltd., an Israeli company that develops neuropsychiatric immune assays, as well as Venture Partner at Medica Venture (a leading VC in Israel). From 1999 to 2009, he held the position of President and CEO of Hadasit Ltd., the technology transfer company of the Hadassah Medical Organization in Jerusalem.

Dr. Hofstein was the founder and has served as Chair of Hadasit BioHolding Ltd., a publicly-traded holding company (10 start-ups under management) on the Tel Aviv Stock Exchange (TASE) since 2005. Other directorships held on TASE publicly-traded companies include: Bioline RX (drug development); Exalenz (medical devices); and Evogene (agri-bio).

Dr. Hofstein also served as Chair of BIOMED, Israel’s annual biomedical conference, from 2005 to 2007. In addition, Dr. Hofstein is a Co-Founder and Board Member of ILSI, the Israeli Life Science Industry Organization, and a Co-Founder and Executive in Israel’s Tech Transfer Network (ITTN).

Harry Rosenbaum

Harry Rosenbaum

Honorary Chair of Limmud FSU Canada

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Panel: How to become successful by Giving

The concept of Tzedaka, or Charitable Giving, has been the cornerstone of the Jewish tradition for more than 3,000 years. In this panel, Matthew Bronfman and Harry Rosenbaum, two of the most successful entrepreneurs in North America today, will discuss why Giving has been such a big part of their success story. Moderated by Eli Ovits.

Opening Ceremony, Gala

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Mr. Rosenbaum is the Honorary Chair of Limmud FSU Canada. Mr. Rosenbaum co-founded Great Gulf Group Limited in 1975 and serves as its Chief Operating Officer. He has been instrumental in manifesting such iconic projects as One Bloor East, Toronto. He is a Partner of Ashton Woods Homes. Prior to the creation of the Great Gulf Group of Companies, Mr. Rosenbaum practiced commercial and real estate law at a Toronto law firm.

He serves as an Independent Director of Starlight U.S. Multi-Family Core Fund, as well as an Independent Director of Starlight Investments Ltd. He has been a Director of Ashton Woods USA LLC, since 1997. He served as an Independent Trustee of WPT Industrial Real Estate Investment Trust from 2013 to 2016. Mr. Rosenbaum serves as a Director of various charitable and non-profit organizations including the ACL (Advocates for Civil Liberties) and CZCA (Canadian Zionist Cultural Association). Mr. Rosenbaum holds a Bachelor of Laws degree from Osgoode Hall Law School and a degree in Economics from York University.

Michael Dermer

Michael Dermer

Entrepreneur, speaker, lawyer and author of The Lonely Entrepreneur

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Skills You Need To Be a Better Entrepreneur

In today’s hypercompetitive world passion & grit aren’t enough, we must develop the skills and mindset to be a better entrepreneur each day. From managing the chaos to generating revenue to standing out from the crowd. In this workshop we’ll walk you through top 10 skills you need to be a successful entrepreneur.

Panel: The Art of Pitching To Investors – Show us what you’ve got!

The investment process can be like being transported to a parallel universe. Not only must you understand the process, but you must deal with someone poking and prodding your baby. Even though having capital is essential to growing your business, the process seems like a distraction from the business. In this workshop, we arm with you the perspectives not only to take on the process but to influence the process to your benefit.

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Michael Dermer is an entrepreneur, lawyer, speaker, coach, cofounder and author of The Lonely Entrepreneur – a one stop shop that understand the entrepreneur’s struggle and provides solutions to the business and personal issues we all face as entrepreneurs. Michael founded and sold the first company to reward people for being healthy and is considered a pioneer of the health rewards industry. Michael’s book is based on his experience of watching the company he built from the ground up almost get destroyed overnight by the financial crisis of 2008. Today, Michael’s mission is to help unlock the potential of entrepreneurs worldwide by turning their passion into success.
Katya Katsman

Katya Katsman

Clinical social worker, family therapist and sexologist

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Байки из кабинета сексолога

Я работаю с людьми более 15 лет и за это время скопилось огромное количество ситуаций, примеров и курьезов, на примере которых я поделюсь своими мыслями и знаниями на тему отношений и секса. Местами будет серьезно, местами- весело, но вы точно уйдете с нашей встречи с информацией к размышлению.

Родители подростков должны знать!

Поговорим о том , что должны знать pодители подростков. Какие соблазны и опасности могут поджидать их подрастающих детей. B этот раз я предлагаю разговор с родителями подростков и он не только о сексе. Об эмоциональных переживаемых, гормональных изменениях, желание быть взрослыми, первая любовь , алкоголь, наркотики….

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Katya Katsman is a clinical social worker, family therapist and sexologist. A graduate of Tel Aviv University, Master of Clinical Social Work. Certified family therapist of Israeli association of family therapy. Sexologist (a graduate of Bar Ilan University). Since 2006, Katya manages a private practice – individual, couples and family. In addition, she conducts lectures, seminars and workshops for parents on the topics of parenting and relationships with children, sex education for minors and personal growth. Regular guest of the 9th channel of the Israeli TV and iland.tv.
Dror Burstein

Dror Burstein

Israeli novelist, poet, and translator

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A Short History of Hebrew Literature’s (Hair)styles

It is best to describe the history of Hebrew Literature reading its texts meticulously, but that will take a while. In this short talk, I’ll try to present an overview of Hebrew Literature, focusing on the hairstyles of some prominent authors. Coiffures are products of culture as much as literature, and one can learn quite a lot on literary styles formed inside the heads of authors by observing the hairstyles on their heads.

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Dror Burstein was born in 1970 in Netanya, Israel, and lives in Tel Aviv. A novelist, poet, and translator, he is the author of several books, including the novels Kin and Netanya. He has been awarded the Jerusalem Prize for Literature; the Ministry of Science and Culture Prize for Poetry; the Bernstein Prize for his debut novel, Avner Brenner; the Prime Minister’s Prize; and the Goldberg Prize for his 2014 novel, Sun’s Sister.
Jonathan Kay

Jonathan Kay

Author, reporter, journalist, editor

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Canada’s Cult of the Noble Savage Harms Its Indigenous Peoples

What are the effects of the Government’s and the media’s focus on residential schools, land claims and sacred rituals? Jonathan Kay will look at the history, the present and the future of one of the most controversial topics in Canadian politics today.

Debate: “What Impact has Trump had on Canada?” Canada’s biggest trading partner is its neighbor to the south. It goes beyond economics. Our cultures, our histories and our destinies are intertwined with the Americans. At least so we thought. In this session Jonathan Kay and Irvin Studin will debate the impact President Trump has had on Canada and what’s yet to come.

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Jonathan Kay is a Toronto-based book author and reporter. He is the Canadian Editor for Quillette, and the co-host of the Wrongspeak podcast. His work appears regularly in the National Post, the Washington Post, The Atlantic, CBC.ca, Foreign Affairs, Maclean’s and Foreign Policy. His books include Among The Truthers (HarperCollins, 2011) and Legacy: How French Canadians Shaped North America (Signal, 2016).  
Irvin Studin

Irvin Studin

International policy and public administration expert, professor, author

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The Russia-West Conflict – Why? What? What’s Next? And Can it be Resolved?

Debate: “What Impact has Trump had on Canada?” Canada’s biggest trading partner is its neighbor to the south. It goes beyond economics. Our cultures, our histories and our destinies are intertwined with the Americans. At least so we thought. In this session Jonathan Kay and Irvin Studin will debate the impact President Trump has had on Canada and what’s yet to come.

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Irvin Studin is the President of the Institute for 21st Century Questions, and Editor-in-Chief & Publisher of Global Brief magazine. He has been called one of the leading international policy thinkers of his generation. Studin has been a professor in leading universities in North America, Asia and Europe. He is the co-founder of Ukraine’s Higher School of Public Administration (Kiev). His latest book is Russia – Strategy, Policy and Administration (Palgrave-MacMillan), and his forthcoming book is entitled 10 Theses on Canada in the 21st Century. He worked in the Privy Council Office (Prime Minister’s department) in Ottawa, as well as in the Australian Department of the Prime Minister and Cabinet in Canberra.

Studin was a member of the team that wrote Canada’s 2004 national security policy, and he principal-authored Australia’s 2006 national counter-terrorism policy. He holds degrees from the Schulich School of Business, the London School of Economics and the University of Oxford. His PhD is from Osgoode Hall Law School, where he was a Trudeau Scholar and won the Governor-General’s Gold Medal. Studin lectures and advises around the world, and has written for the Financial Times, Le Monde, Vedomosti, the Globe & Mail, and many other media sources. His other books include The Strategic Constitution – Understanding Canadian Power in the World (UBC Press, 2014), and What is a Canadian? Forty-Three Thought-Provoking Responses (McClelland & Stewart, 2006).

In past, Studin captained York University’s varsity soccer team, played professionally with the Toronto Lynx, and earned two ‘Blues’ with the varsity soccer team at Oxford University.

JUMPLE

JUMPLE

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For sheer exuberance, showmanship, and just plain fun, this band of crazed musical gypsies are simply impossible to beat. With all members of the band hailing from different parts of the former USSR, there is a distinct cultural and musical influence that clearly sets this band apart. It’s very rare to see a live band that can coax a crowd into dancing the way the JUMPLE can – they get people out of their seats and on their feet. Rocking flamboyant costumes, synchronized dance moves and an anything-goes attitude, they put on one of the zaniest and most compelling performances – be it at a festival, a house-party or a charity event; their live shows are always unique and interactive experiences, capturing the hearts of a wide variety of audiences JUMPLE is undeniably one of the most refreshing bands to come out of T.O.
Alex Levin

Alex Levin

Intellectual property and patent portfolio management consultant

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Israel – from oranges to space in 70 years

Israel, through its 70 years of existence, came a long way from agricultural crime-stricken English substituent to be a major innovation and business hub. How it happened, what made it possible and what we can learn from it while being in Canada.

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Alex Levin is co-founder of Levin Consulting Group. He holds an MBA from Schulich S.B. Toronto, P.Eng. electrical and computer science (Israel) with diverse experience in management consulting of technology companies. Alex manages Business Development of Levin Consulting Group and commercialization activities. In IP department, Alex performs patent portfolio analysis and outlines client’s IP strategy, while ensuring it is compatible with overall business strategy. Alex also oversees patent portfolio management activities of LCG clients. Alex frequently lectures about Patent Portfolio Management, Intellectual Property, Competitive Intelligence and everything in between.
Alex Plotkin

Alex Plotkin

Cyber Security and Privacy consultant

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What you did not know about cyber security

The session will talk about latest cyber hacks, who is after you and why, how they do it and how you can protect yourself. If time allows, the session will also touch on the latest security developments in the crypto world.

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Alex Plotkin is a Cyber Security and Privacy adviser. Alex holds MSc in Technology Management from New York University (Polytechnic), and B.Eng. from Coventry University, as well as CISSP and PMP certifications. Alex has more than 20 years of experience and knowledge in different business and technology areas. He held leadership roles from founding number of technology start-up, to leading technology revolution in big corporations like Microsoft, VISA and banks. Alex is a CEO of Plotech Solutions www.plotech.ca that provides software development, and Cyberwall www.cyberwall.ca, that provides Technology and Cyber Security consulting.
Alex Sadovsky

Alex Sadovsky

Small Business Expert – Business and Retail Banking

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Must Know Business Banking Tips for Entrepreneurs who want to Finance and Grow their Business

The Canadian Small Business landscape is booming and the entrepreneurial spirit is at its all-time high. In this session, Alex Sadovsky covers the critical knowledge that each business owner should be equipped with when it comes to financing your idea or business for start-ups or those looking to growing their existing business. Banking relationship tips and the art of selling your idea are also covered with practical guidance that you can apply to your next banking collaboration.

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A seasoned expert in the world of banking, particularly in the area of small business and commercial banking, Alex has over 12 years of experience in working with clients, partners and executives of all levels to bring several high-profile projects to light. A leader in the fast-paced FinTech agile work environment with The Bank of Montreal, Alex’s experience and education has led him to design and develop a brand new, innovative and first to market lending platform that delivers superior client experience for the small business segment. Alex holds an MBA in Strategy and Marketing from the Rotman School of Management and an Honours Science Degree from the University of Toronto. Alex is a big supporter of Junior Achievements of Central Ontario and has been a judge on The Entrepreneurial Adventures Program and a consultant with the Women in Business program, both sponsored by BMO.
Alti Rodal

Alti Rodal

Historian, writer, former professor, UJE founder

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A Journey Through the Ukrainian-Jewish Encounter: From Antiquity to 1914

Presentation and talk of a new exhibit book, A Journey Through the Ukrainian-Jewish Encounter: From Antiquity to 1914, which is based on a community exhibit that traveled throughout Canada in 2015. The 168-page richly illustrated book hopes to present an integrated narrative that looks at the experience of these two peoples together, “in all its complexity–through periods of crisis, as well as, long stretches of normal co-existence and multifaceted cultural interaction,” notes Alti Rodal, exhibit curator, author and UJE co-director.

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Alti Rodal, one of the original founders of the Ukrainian Jewish Encounter and Chair of UJE’s Academic Council, is a historian, writer, former professor of Jewish history, and former official and advisor to the Government of Canada. She was born in Chernivtsi (Czernowitz) in Ukraine and received her early schooling in Israel. She was educated at McGill, Oxford, and Hebrew universities in the fields of history and literature. Her professional experience includes a decade of full-time and sessional teaching at universities in Montreal, Ottawa, and Oxford; research and writing under academic, policy institute, governmental, and other auspices; and over twenty years of senior advisory and management experience with the Government of Canada, including with the Privy Council Office, Royal Commissions of Inquiry, and central agencies. She is the author of a variety of studies and reports for government, as well as scholarly and other writing on aspects of identity, Jewish history and culture, inter-communal relations, and public policy. She has also served on the boards of several national Canadian NGOs/community organizations.
David Ahmann

David Ahmann

Managing partner of Bloomth scientific wellness clinic

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Feed your energy and libido

Fatique and limited sex life can be caused by energy imbalances and other issues which deplete sexual drive. But lifestyle factors, such as eating poorly, smoking, drinking too much alcohol, stress and lack of exercise, can also have a massive impact on sexual health. Eating a variety of foods high in fatty acids and proteins is key to keeping your hormones in check. Your body needs various types of building blocks to improve your sexual life.

Food as medicine

Food as medicine interactive workshop. Discover the way your body really works and reacts to what you eat with our fun interactive experiments for you and your children. Build a mini version of human digestive system and instantly see how your food choices affect your body and well being. Our experiments will be accompanied by easy to understand explanations and answers to your questions.

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David Ahmann is a cofounder and a managing partner of Bloomth scientific wellness clinic. David has an extensive background in investments and strategic planning and management. He is passionate about helping people to be their better and healthier selves.
David Kaufman

David Kaufman

Narrative and solution focused brief therapist, addictions counselor

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How To Talk To Someone You Love About Addiction

Talking to your children about the harms associated with alcohol and drug use is the most effective way to help prevent underage drinking and improper or illegal drug use. Children who have conversations with their parents or guardians about the dangers associated with alcohol and drugs are 50% less likely to use alcohol and drugs, compared to those who do not. Parents need to take a proactive role in learning about alcohol and drugs and in helping kids make the healthiest choices. This hands on lecture was created for parents wanting to learn how to speak in a meaningful and educated manner to their children about alcohol, drugs and other addictive and compulsive behaviours.

The Jews and the Joint: panel discussion

Canada was the first country that legalized Marijuana. During this session, the panelists will discuss and argue on how the Pot Legalization will impact our country and our community. You will also learn about the traditional Jewish view on recreational drugs.

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David Kaufman is a warm and outgoing Narrative and Solution Focused Brief Therapist. He has lectured and taught on a wide variety of mental health topics (trauma, stress management and conflict resolution), philosophic and theological issues (Why good people suffer, Love: Self, Others and God, Religion and Psychology) in Israel and Canada, including York University, Hinks Dellcrest Family Therapy Center, Shaarei Tzedek Hospital in Jerusalem, Maor Aynayim Therapy Center, The Orthodox Union Center, Aish HaTorah College. In 1985 David received the Black Student Union Appreciation Award for his community work in Rochester, N.Y. David and his wife Estair and 2 children moved to Bratislava, after the velvet revolution, working for The Foundation for The Education and Welfare for Jews of Czechoslovakia. Together they established the first Jewish school and educational program in Czechoslovakia since WWII. Assisting in the charity, food, religious services, funerals, etc. for the community. In 1995 he co-founded the Narrative Therapy Center in Jerusalem. In 2003 he was an honorary Staff member at the Hinks Dellcrest Institute as a member of a University of Toronto research project concerning Narrative Therapy techniques. Since that time he has been teaching, working for JACS (An alcohol, drug, co-dependent educational, support group and counseling organization), and maintaining a private practice in Thornhill, Toronto and on Skype.
David Lefkowich

David Lefkowich

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A Magic Night: Celebration of Shabbat through Soulful Music & Stories of the Heart

Join Rabbi Tina Grimberg, David Lefkowich and Debbie Gilbert in joyful song and soul provoking stories. For all ages (**With musical instruments)

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David Lefkowich is a singer-songwriter and lay-cantor who, for the past 25 years, has shared his soulful music with Congregation Darchei Noam in Toronto.
David Nortman

David Nortman

Naturopathic doctor, philosopher

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The Denial of Death as the Origin of Culture and Religion

In his groundbreaking 1973 book, The Denial of Death, Jewish-American cultural anthropologist Ernest Becker proposed that our awareness of our physical limitation and mortality compels us to inhabit a symbolic realm in which we are free to act out as heroes within a personal or collective “immortality project.” Every religion and culture can thus be viewed as a “theatre for heroism” in which people get to act out the heroic strivings of their immortality project, thereby symbolically denying their death and imbuing their lives with positive meaning. I will present Becker’s theory and explore its relevance to contemporary issues, including the psychological underpinnings of the world’s religions and the current environmental crisis.

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David Nortman is a naturopathic doctor and philosopher. He is a graduate of the University of Toronto, Canadian College of Naturopathic Medicine, and Tel-Aviv University where he completed a master’s degree in philosophy. In his clinical practice David combines classical homeopathy with coaching to address a variety of chronic physical and psychological conditions. Outside the clinic he pursues his passion for exploring the organizing principles of human existence, with research interests that lie at the intersection of philosophy, medicine, psychology, and anthropology: What can the commonalities between different systems of spiritual medicine tell us about the structure of reality? Can science in its present form study consciousness and spirituality without reconsidering its foundational principles? What ultimately motivates people across all cultures and religions? David is also a professional classical singer who has performed in North America, Europe, and Israel.
David Silverberg

David Silverberg

Poet, artistic director, producer and journalist

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Jewnique by David Silverberg

David interviews successful leaders in Ontario Judaism to learn more about their connections to Jewish culture, in order to find inspiration in how they embraced Judaism via their own journeys. Among the profile subjects whose stories will be told on stage: Judy Feld Carr, David Buchbinder, Moshe Krause, Judy Perly, Igal Hecht. In Jewnique, David will reveal never-before-presented details about his up-and-down relationship with Judaism and what these Jewish leaders taught him about finding your faith in your community and cultural heritage.

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David is a spoken word poet, arts educator, workshop leader, artistic director, producer and journalist. He founded Toronto Poetry Slam, one of Canada’s largest spoken word events. His first theatre show Jewnique debuted in Toronto in 2018. He has performed across Canada, including at events such as the Luminato Festival of the Arts, Word on the Street, Words Aloud Poetry Festival in Durham, Vancouver Poetry Slam, Saskatoon Poetry Slam, Throw Poetry Slam in Montreal and many more.

David’s debut book of poetry Bags of Wires was published by LyricalMyrical Press in 2007. His upcoming book will be published by ChiZine in 2019. His non-fiction work has been published in the The Washington Post, BBC News, The Globe & Mail, Toronto Star, Vice, Buzzfeed, Ars Technica, NOW Magazine, Quill & Quire, Canadian Business, Canadian Jewish News, Pharmacy Business, Ryerson Alumni Magazine, Raptors Magazine and many more.  

Dyanoosh Youssefi

Dyanoosh Youssefi

Criminal defence lawyer, legal studies professor, writer, social justice advocate

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Is this Justice, Justice? The Canadian Criminal Justice System and the Biblical Concept of Justice & Punishment

“Justice, justice, you shall pursue!” Plenty of ink has been spilled expounding on this commandment. How do you think the Canadian and North American justice systems measure against the Biblical concept? Do you think our system is more lenient, progressive, and forgiving than the one described in the Torah? Is it the other way around? The Canadian criminal justice system is both praised for its fairness and neutrality, and criticized for ignoring the needs of victims, being overly punitive toward offenders, and at times inhumane. The Jewish concept of justice, as described in the Torah, appears to be filled with inconsistencies: great compassion and ruthless punishment live side-by-side in the pages of the Torah. Can the Jewish concept of justice shed light on our adversarial, punitive justice system? How would the biblical portrayal of justice and punishment change the way we do things in Canada and the western world? Is the Canadian system one that upholds “Justice, justice?”

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Dyanoosh Youssefi is a Jewish-Iranian immigrant whose family escaped Iran when she was 11-years-old. She is the Executive Director and founder of All IN, an organization that advocates for inclusive communities. She is a former criminal defence lawyer, a legal studies professor, a writer, and a social justice advocate. Her passion for justice and building community led her to run for Toronto City Council in 2014. For over 30 years, she has volunteered consistently, both at the local and international level, and has served in different capacities (Vice-Chair, Secretary, Governance Chair, Director) on the Board of Directors of RESULTS Canada and Parkdale Activity Recreation Centre.  
Eli Chagaev

Eli Chagaev

Krav Maga instructor

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Use of canines in Israeli security forces

Psychology of self-defense

In this session Eli Chagaev will discuss the psychology and the mindset of self defense. First we will discuss the psychology of the attacker as well as behavioural ques and signs that would allow us to recognize and prepare for self-defense. Secondly, we will explore a set of tips on how to avoid dangerous situations and not to be in a victim position. Psychology is big part of self-defense and does not require significant physical training or preparation. Attendees will learn how to develop situational awareness and how to avoid or deescalate confrontational situations.

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Eli, immigrated to Israel in 1995 from the Caucasus and already in 1996 he won Israel’s Boxing Championship. Eli served in Border Police. In 2003, he began working for the prison guards unit, the Nahshon unit. Eli is also certified K-9 and shooting instructor and trained Prison Guards, K-9 units well as Israeli Police School. Eli is the official representative of Aiki Krav Maga in Canada train students in his own martial arts school in Bradford, and in a martial arts club in Woodbridge.
Eli Ovits

Eli Ovits

Chief Executive of Limmud International

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Creating Community: Strengthening Our Global Jewish Family

Together we will explore some of the worldwide challenges facing the Jewish People and society at large. Has Limmud, and others, developed a proven formula to combat them? To engage people, and create a community fit for our times and common future? This session welcomes innovative minds – seeking to learn and get involved.

What is Limmud?

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Eli Ovits is Chief Executive of Limmud. Representing Limmud in 42 countries, Eli supports the development of Limmud, its programs and volunteers. Eli is a Captain (res) in the IDF Spokespersons Unit and a graduate of Hebrew U. He has lectured and traveled widely working to combat extremism and strengthen our global Jewish community.
Ezer Diena

Ezer Diena

Fellow of the Yeshiva University Torah Mitzion Beit Midrash Zichron Dov

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Temple Tricks: Practical Jokes in Jewish Tradition

While many of us are familiar with modern-day pranks pulled on April Fool’s day, practical jokes are also part of a rich history of Jewish humor. With case studies from 2000 years ago through the modern-era, come and learn about how Judaism values and views pranksters and the tricks they play on others.

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Rabbi Ezer Diena currently serves as a Fellow of the Yeshiva University Torah Mitzion Beit Midrash Zichron Dov, and as Rabbinic Assistant at Beth Avraham Yoseph of Toronto. Rabbi Diena simultaneously received an Honours B.Sc. degree in Chemistry and a Bachelor’s Degree in Education form York University. He spent two years learning at Yeshivas Toras Moshe in Jerusalem. He also served as a Talmud teacher, and a Judaics, Mathematics, and Science supply teacher at Yeshivat Or Chaim, and delivered a weekly parshah shiur at a local synagogue. Rabbi Diena loves to teach Talmud and Jewish Law, as well as text-based Bible study, with a focus on recent commentaries.
Ezekiel Barmasch

Ezekiel Barmasch

Director, Israel's Economic and Trade Mission to Canada

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Israeli Economy and Canadian Collaborative Opportunities Ezekiel will provide an overview of the Israeli Economic landscape and begin by introducing Israel’s Economic and Trade Mission to Canada. A brief highlight of various high-tech sectors where Israel excels the most and am going speak about Canada-Israel business relations including the recently updated Canada Israel Free Trade Agreement (CIFTA) as well as economic opportunities that exist between both nations.

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Ezekiel Barmasch is the Director of Business and Trade Development at Israel’s Economic and Trade Mission to Canada, which is based at Israel’s Consulate General offices in Toronto. He is responsible for helping maintain and direct Israel’s international trade policy. He has a Business Degree (BCom), with Specialized Honours in Marketing from York University and a Law Degree from City Law School, University of London. Ezekiel’s mandate is to promote as well as facilitate trade and exports with Canada, leveraging The Canada-Israel Free Trade Agreement (CIFTA) and encouraging mutually beneficial trade conditions between both nations across a variety of economic sectors. Ezekiel works with Canadian and Israeli business leaders across various industries. His work helps to initiate and facilitate multiple Israeli exports into Canada as well as Canadian investments to Israel.
Galit Baram

Galit Baram

Consul General of Israel in Toronto and Western Canada

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Israel’s Soft Diplomacy – Achievements and Challenges

Classic diplomacy used to be strictly political, and mainly concentrated on bilateral relations between governments and activity in international forums. Today, diplomacy has diversified and also includes cultural exchange, activity in social media, academic exchange and humanitarian aid. Israeli investment in soft diplomacy has expanded over the past few years, as a way to connect with different sectors of civil society. This soft diplomacy has proven successful but brings with it modern-day challenges.

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Galit Baram is Israel’s Consul General in Toronto and Western Canada. A career diplomat since 1994, she served in Moscow, Cairo and Washington DC, and was Director of the Department for Palestinian Affairs and Regional Cooperation at the Israeli Ministry of Foreign Affairs. She is married to a fellow career diplomat and is the mother of two.
Genya Klaiman

Genya Klaiman

Yoga teacher and therapist

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Yin Yang Yoga class

This class blends two styles of yoga; yin and vinyasa, harmonizing the mind and body. For the first half of the class we will engage in creative breath-based movement coupled with pranayama (breathing exercises synchronized with drums). Next we will allow the body to melt through deeply held tension through the yin yoga practice, all while exploring the nature of the mind.

Family Yoga class

Family Yoga is activity designed for the ‘kid’ in us all. In a loving and compassionate environment, enjoy special moments with the whole family. Physical and mind exercises designed for the young and the younger, to connect to your own sense of creativity, wonder and FUN!

Laughter Yoga

Laughter is one of the most important ingredients in our lives. To benefit the most from its healing properties we need to reconnect with our inner child! Laughter yoga is an extraordinary class where you will explore the magic of spontaneous laughter in combination with yogic breathing. This class will help you to become more flexible physically and mentally, gain good moods, improve quality of life and become healthier. Great time for the whole family!

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Genya Klaiman is the owner and director of Indigo Yoga Studio, located in Richmond Hill Ontario. After completing his kinesiology program in Wingate Institute (IL) in 2003, Genya set out on a journey to discover the mind-body-spirit benefits of Yoga.Combining knowledge and experience gained in the past twenty years, he offers a highly integrated approach by fusing elements from Hatha Yoga, Yin Yoga and Qi Gong.

As a yoga teacher and therapist, Genya has assisted in improving the lives of numerous individuals who have reached out to him with a variety of health conditions and life challenges. He is certified in Phoenix Rising Yoga Therapy and has completed 1,500 hours in yoga therapy training.

Ilana (Rubenstein) Kendal

Ilana (Rubenstein) Kendal

Psychotherapist, Jewish educator

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Resilience: Tools to overcome any obstacle

This talk explores the deep connections between psychology and Torah in overcoming our obstacles and rising to new heights. Drawing of classical texts, clinical experience and personal insights, Ilana provides take-home tools to building personal resilience. “I am not what happened to me, I am what I choose to become” – Carl Jung “The righteous individual falls seven times and rises” – King Solomon

Leonard Cohen & Facing the Darkness

This talk explores the Jewish approach to darkness and the path towards light. Through examining the life and work of Leonard Cohen, Ilana draws our attention to the everyday choices we can make and the meaning we find in our struggles. In the words of the late Cohen, “there’s a crack in everything, that’s how the light gets in”.

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Ilana (Rubenstein) Kendal is a therapist, a mother and teacher at The Village Shul and The Yorkville Jewish Centre in Toronto. Her greatest passion is connecting Torah wisdom to our personal paths and struggles. Ilana is part of the Jewish Women Renaissance Project.
Jana Tuhman

Jana Tuhman

Scientific Wellness Consultant

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Feed your energy and libido

Fatique and limited sex life can be caused by energy imbalances and other issues which deplete sexual drive. But lifestyle factors, such as eating poorly, smoking, drinking too much alcohol, stress and lack of exercise, can also have a massive impact on sexual health. Eating a variety of foods high in fatty acids and proteins is key to keeping your hormones in check. Your body needs various types of building blocks to improve your sexual life.

Food as medicine

Food as medicine interactive workshop. Discover the way your body really works and reacts to what you eat with our fun interactive experiments for you and your children. Build a mini version of human digestive system and instantly see how your food choices affect your body and well being. Our experiments will be accompanied by easy to understand explanations and answers to your questions.

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Jana Tuhman is a co-founder and a managing partner at Bloomth Scientific Wellness clinic. Jana’s field of applied expertise is helping people feel better and healthier through nutritional and lifestyle behavioral changes. Jana holds two Master of Science degrees in Biophysics from BIU (one of Israel’s largest academic institution) and Biochemistry from UofT. She has more than 10 years of scientific background with an extensive experience in medical research including the Hospital for SickKids.
Julia Dobkine

Julia Dobkine

Personal Stylist, Image and Colour Advisor

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Brand awareness and Image

Front stage and back stage – Always look appropriate Personal branding focuses on “self-packaging” where success is not determined by individuals’ internal sets of skills, motivations, and interests but, rather, by how effectively you are “branded”- presented. Your image creates a statement of your professionalism and success; it reveals everything about your life, habits, interests and income. When creating a Personal Brand and Image, think about the message you send to the world and how people perceive you. It is important to create a proper memory that describes the total experience of having a relationship with you.

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Julia is a holistic Image Consultant focusing on a personal growth and transformation. By seeing the great potential of each person, she helps clients to realize their significance and recognize the full spectrum of capabilities. Julia is passionate about leading people through a full makeover into the most successful, stylish and powerful version of them.
Julia Segal

Julia Segal

Naturopathic doctor

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Vibrant Women’s Health – blending practical naturopathic understanding, ancient Eastern medicine and Kabbalistic principles

A woman’s journey through life is rich with change, from menstruation to fertility and pregnancy, postpartum and motherhood, menopause and beyond. Today’s world requires us to work at achieving and maintaining vibrant health. We will look through the lenses of naturopathic medicine, Kabbalah and traditional Chinese five elements to outline the essential pillars of women’s health – and how these differ for different women. These include nutritional and herbal supports, social and spiritual awareness, and physical strength and balance. We will identify areas to put our energy towards in order to stay balanced and nourished.

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Julia Segal is a Toronto-based naturopathic doctor who is passionate about nature and natural medicine. She takes a special interest in women’s health, digestive health and immune health, and enjoys using traditional botanical and Eastern medicine approaches alongside nutrition. Since her other love is teaching, Julia often teaches at the Canadian College of Naturopathic Medicine, and she has also developed an online prenatal course for new moms to help them prepare for postpartum, mothering a baby, and the incredible change that’s about to enter their lives. This is inspired by her own journey as a mother that started 2.5 years ago and has opened her eyes to just how much has changed for mothers in recent human history, and how mothers bear the burden for the loss of our “village.” Julia meditated every day for five years before she had her son and is still working on getting that balance back into her life. When she’s not working, Julia can be found hiking with her family, winging it in the kitchen, reading a good book, dancing or doing Pilates.
Kelly Beker

Kelly Beker

Manager of Strategic Partnerships at MedReleaf

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The Business of Cannabis – New Opportunities in a Budding Industry

Kelly Beker will discuss the pre and post cannabis legalization landscape of the Canadian economy. What opportunities exist with the introduction of the new industry? Will the new Cannabis industry be socially responsible?

The Jews and the Joint: panel discussion

Canada was the first country that legalized Marijuana. During this session, the panelists will discuss and argue on how the Pot Legalization will impact our country and our community. You will also learn about the traditional Jewish view on recreational drugs.

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Kelly is the Manager of Strategic Partnerships at MedReleaf Corp, and has been with the company for over three years. She is passionate about educating both the general public, and medical community about the therapeutic benefits of cannabis. At MedReleaf, Kelly has formed strategic partnerships with several Canadian charitable organizations, independent artists, and athletic communities. She executes events for MedReleaf across Canada, to spread education and awareness of the advancing science behind medical cannabis. Kelly is currently involved with the strategy and experiential activations of Aurora’s new recreational brands.She is the appointed representative on the Global Cannabis Partnership Board, an industry association developing best practices and corporate responsibility.
Kesem Frank

Kesem Frank

Mavennet President and Aion Co-Founder, blockchain expert

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Kesem Frank, Mavennet President and Aion Co-Founder is a technology strategy expert specializing in blockchain powered enterprise architecture. Following a leadership position in Deloitte’s Blockchain practice, Kesem co-founded Nuco, one of the earliest enterprise blockchain platforms and a founding member of the Enterprise Ethereum Alliance. In his capacity as COO, Kesem led multiple projects, positioning blockchain at the core of future business platforms for fortune-1000 companies. In 2017, Kesem directed the launch of Aion, a decentralized interoperability network, establishing its position as a globally leading blockchain protocol. Mavennet, founded 2018, leads Aion for Enterprise and pursuesthe goal of making blockchain a mainstream technology by driving adoption by major enterprises.

Kesem is an experienced team leader, having served as a naval officer with the IDF for 5 years, his passion for startups and innovation led him to join UofT’s Creative Destruction Lab as a program fellow. Kesem achieved Cum Laude honors for both his undergraduate degrees of Law (LLB) and business administration (BA) and was awarded multiple scholarships towards his Masters of Business Administration (MBA) at the University of Toronto.

Lana Lior Model

Lana Lior Model

Social worker, psychotherapist

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Between the sheets – Us, Our partners and everything in between

Interactive workshop about the complexity of building a relationship. Who we are and what do we bring to it? How do the fantasies and our perceptions influence our communication with our partner and our relationship as well. What is really needed for a strong and good relationship? Myths vs Reality.

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Lior Model has over fifteen years of clinical experience offering psychotherapy to teenagers and students, adults and families, facing parenting crisis, people, struggling with identity issues, low self-esteem, loss and other challenging transitions in life. Lior is experienced in treating emotional pain, behavioral issues, communicational challenges, anxiety and social problems with teenagers and adults, going through difficult life transitions and existential crises, treating complex issues such as identity crises, internet addiction, obesity and depression. Lior has deep love and compassion for our complicated human nature. She believes that we are much more resilient than we think of ourselves.

Lior is a registered member of Ontario College of Social Worker (RSW, MSW) and a Certified Group Facilitator. She has Master of Social Work from University of Windsor, and Bachelor of Social Work from the Hebrew University of Jerusalem.

Lev Mirlas

Lev Mirlas

IT consultant, author and Jewish educator

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Babylon vs Israel: Ancient and modern split between Israel and the Diaspora

The books of Yechezkel and Yirmiyahu describe the social environment and attitudes that formed within the Jewish society following the first two exiles by Navuchadnezzar, before the destruction of the first temple. The society in Judea was deprived of its major leaders and scholars, while these leaders who were taken to Babylon found themselves deprived of purpose. It is fascinating to observe how these two Jewish communities evolved during the short period that they existed with little or no communication, and how they remerged after the final demise of the Jewish settlement in the land of Israel following the destruction of the first Temple. This talk will give a brief historic overview of the final years of the first temple era, and explore the social parameters prevailing at the time. If time permits, I would like to explore analogies with the modern state situation of Jewish communities in Israel and in the Diaspora.

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Lev Mirlas, P.Eng. studied Engineering at the University of Toronto, where he obtained his B.A.Sc. and M.A.Sc. degrees. In his professional life he was a solution architect at the IBM Toronto Lab, working in the area of electronic commerce, and is the author of dozens of patents, as well as a book: “Multisite Commerce: Proven Principles for Overcoming the Business, Organizational, and Technical Challenges (IBM Press)”. Currently he has a private consulting business in IT and book publishing. Lev has been teaching classes for many years at several Toronto synagogues on such subjects as the Talmud, Jewish Law, and Jewish History. Lev is the author of a book on Jewish Law: “Ateres Mordechai Halacha of the Day”.
Marsha Forchuk Skrypuch

Marsha Forchuk Skrypuch

Awarding-winning Canadian writer

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“Please Don’t Tell the Enemy” – the story of a Jewish family being saved by their Ukrainian neighbours during the Holocaust

Presentation and talk about Please Don’t Tell the Enemy: Canadian award-winning writer Marsha Forchuk Skrypuch discusses her young adult novel about a Ukrainian family that saved their Jewish neighbours during World War II. The novel is based on the true story of the Korpan family; a Ukrainian mother and daughter who were named Righteous Among the Nations. The book is the first of a trilogy about a Ukrainian girl and a Jewish boy.

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Marsha Forchuk Skrypuch is an awarding-winning Canadian writer. Her books follow a general theme — they’re nearly all about young people plunged in the midst of war or oppression. She is best known for her WWII trilogy, Stolen Child, Making Bombs for Hitler, and Underground Soldier. These books have been translated into different languages and have won many awards.
Melissa Lanstman

Melissa Lanstman

Strategic communications leader for federal government and political campaigns

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Becoming a Changemaker: Navigating Canadian Politics as a Russian Jew in 2018

Changemakers are value driven and thrive on purpose. Understanding where you can affect politics is the first step in becoming a changemaker. Melissa will take you through how Russian-Jews and pro-Israel Canadians can participate in the democratic process and build relationships within the Canadian political arena. No matter who you are or where you come from – the future of Canadian Russian-Jewish community is in your hands. In this session, you’ll learn how to navigate, advocate and affect change in your community.

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Melissa Lantsman is an award-winning communications strategist. She currently serves as Vice President of Public Affairs at Hill & Knowlton Strategies Canada and is a frequent media commentator and columnist on the subject of Canadian politics. Most recently Melissa was head of Premier Doug Ford’s 2018 Campaign War Room and served as chief spokesperson for the campaign. Melissa has held senior roles in the 2008, 2011 and 2015 federal Conservative Party of Canada campaign war rooms and served as director of communications for Canada’s ministers of finance, foreign affairs, trade and environment. She is active in community service as a volunteer, board member and mentor with several organizations, serving on the board of directors for the Canadian Jewish Public Affairs Committee (CJPAC) and the Canadian Council of Jewish Affairs (CIJA) in Toronto and Jewish Addiction Community Services (JACS). Melissa is a mentor with Women in Politics (WIP). She is fluent in English, French and Russian.
Nadia Stolpner

Nadia Stolpner

Conscious Dance/Movement Facilitator, Spiritual Counsellor

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Meditation workshop

Find time to pause and awaken to still presence of your being. Find joy of being right here in each moment. We will practice mindfulness meditation to settle home into our bodies, and to be present with thoughts and other experiences as they arise. We will incorporate Jewish wisdom into our practice together to come alive to the Divine presence in each breath, inside us and all around. No experience is needed to participate.

Contemplative movement workshop – “Soul Connect with Movement”

Do you want to move or dance? Do you want to hear wisdom of your own being? In this experiential workshop, we will use meditation, gently guided movement/dance and music to de-stress, connect with our bodies and hearts, and hear the voice of our souls. Jewish wisdom, and options for journaling and drawing are tools to deepen our journey.

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Nadia Stolpner loves combining spirituality and embodiment. She facilitates Conscious Dance/Movement classes and offers Spirit-Centered Counselling in Toronto. A registered social worker, she works as a Counsellor (psychotherapist) at George Brown College with students in the Theatre, Media and Design programs. She studied Jewish Embodied Spirituality with Rabbi Diane Elliot, Simona Aronow, and Julie Leavitt. She brings 8 years of experience in facilitating therapeutic movement/dance and meditation workshops.
Natalia Feduschak

Natalia Feduschak

Journalist, UJE member

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A Journey Through the Ukrainian-Jewish Encounter: From Antiquity to 1914

Presentation and talk of a new exhibit book, A Journey Through the Ukrainian-Jewish Encounter: From Antiquity to 1914, which is based on a community exhibit that traveled throughout Canada in 2015. The 168-page richly illustrated book hopes to present an integrated narrative that looks at the experience of these two peoples together, “in all its complexity–through periods of crisis, as well as, long stretches of normal co-existence and multifaceted cultural interaction,” notes Alti Rodal, exhibit curator, author and UJE co-director.

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Natalia A. Feduschak joined UJE in October 2013. With more than twenty years of international journalism experience, she has spent much of her career covering the former Soviet Union, from the empire’s breakup to the challenges faced by newly independent states. She has written for leading publications in Europe and North America, including the Wall Street Journal Europe, the Washington Times, the Denver Post, and the Kyiv Post. She was a Fulbright Scholar as well as an International Health Fellow with the Henry J. Kaiser Family Foundation in Ukraine, and a Congressional Fellow with the American Political Science Association in Washington, DC. Feduschak holds a bachelor’s degree from George Washington University and a Master of International Affairs from Columbia University.
Natalya Suzdalnitskaya

Natalya Suzdalnitskaya

Expert in effective learning technologies, co-owner of Yes! School

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How to avoid falling Into the trap with your child’s first language

Multilingualism and proficiency in multiple languages has become a phenomenon of the 21st century, as international relations and geopolitical climate have evolved. Therefore, it is crucially important to understand the dynamics of successful developmental milestones of a multilingual child. It all starts with knowledge and proficiency in a native language, followed by gradual acquisition and absorption of various surrounding languages. Therefore, teaching a child how to communicate effectively is every parent’s primary and crucial task. Early childhood education, complete with various techniques, methodologies and strategies, is essential to the development of a child, since children require a play-based environment, a group of peers and a special nurturing language environment.

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Natalya Suzdalnitskaya is a mother of an 8-year-old son, a teacher, a methodologist, a manager, an expert in effective learning technologies and working with bilingual children living with parents in immigration, an author of educational programs for children, classes and distance learning courses for parents. Natalya Suzdalnitskaya was born in Russia to a family of 4 teachers generations. She started working as a kindergarten teacher and progressed to a school principal with 1400 students.

In 2006 Natalya started researching the development of skills and abilities of children. In 2012 together with her husband, she opened Yes! School – Centre for Supplementary Education in Toronto, that specializes in 3 areas: Bilingual Children, Effective Education, and Business Programs for children. From 2015 Natalya hosts a Conference for Parents of Bilingual Children – “I speak Russian”, an online project for Russian-speaking parents. Over 1,500 parents have participated in her programs, this work was marked by an honorary diploma from the mayor of Toronto – John Howard Tory.

Pyotr Schwartzman

Pyotr Schwartzman

Architect, painter and artist

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Jewish influence on contemporary art and architecture

A friendly conversation with the audience about the direction of contemporary art and architecture in the latest decades. Similarities and huge differences between movements in contemporary visual art/music and architecture, by outlining the performance of 3 giants of contemporary architecture: Moshe Safdie, Daniel Libeskind and Frank Gehry. These particular architects are being chose out of many others because of their very proud and well pronounce Jewish heritage as well as the strong connection to Canada.

Watercolor art workshop

This workshop will focus on two main techniques of watercolor art, through painting a simple image to illustrate these techniques.

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Pyotr is a well-known architect, painter and artist in Ottawa circles. Originally from Belarus, Pyotr came to Canada from the former Soviet Union in 1979 with degrees in architecture and fine art.

Pyotr has travelled many corners of the globe and tells the stories of what he sees through his paintings. He uses mainly oils and watercolour. More of his work can be seen in the architecture within various buildings and projects he has been involved in throughout Ottawa. The best example of his art can likely be seen in the form of six large interpretive panels in the Canadian War Museum. Pyotr has been teaching his art skills to children through his school, Peter Schwartzman School of Art.

Rachel Danziger-Sharansky

Rachel Danziger-Sharansky

Writer and blogger, teacher

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Jerusalem, in the Flesh

In a rare personal session, talented writer, blogger, and native Jerusalemite Rachel Sharansky Danziger will talk about how Jerusalem made her life possible – and complicated. Like so many Soviet Jews, Rachel’s father, Natan Sharansky, became a Zionist following the six days war. The famous picture of the paratroopers by the Western Wall inspired his generation to fight for their right to immigrate to Israel, and started the struggle that allowed Rachel to be born as a free Jew in Jerusalem. But life in real Jerusalem isn’t always simple, and the future and the past tend to complicate the present. This session will explore the duality of a city that’s both a symbol and a real place, a source of inspiration – and a place to hang clean laundry….

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Rachel Sharansky Danziger is a Jerusalem-born writer and speaker who’s in love with her city’s vibrant human scene. She writes about Judaism, parenting and life in Israel for the Times of Israel and Kveller, and explores storytelling in the bible as a teacher and on 929 (a platform with daily content centered on basic issues within society, ethical dilemmas, questions of gender and social justice, democracy and governance and other relevant issues – all through the prism of Tanakh, chapter by chapter). She is the daughter of Nathan Sharansky.
Raya Shadursky

Raya Shadursky

Director of Operations at UJE

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A Journey Through the Ukrainian-Jewish Encounter: From Antiquity to 1914

Presentation and talk of a new exhibit book, A Journey Through the Ukrainian-Jewish Encounter: From Antiquity to 1914, which is based on a community exhibit that traveled throughout Canada in 2015. The 168-page richly illustrated book hopes to present an integrated narrative that looks at the experience of these two peoples together, “in all its complexity–through periods of crisis, as well as, long stretches of normal co-existence and multifaceted cultural interaction,” notes Alti Rodal, exhibit curator, author and UJE co-director.

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Raya Shadursky has come from the private and not-for-profit sectors, where she has held senior management positions, including Western Regional Director, Institute of Canadian Bankers, and Canadian Director of the Certified Employee Benefits Specialist program. For the past six years she has held the position of UJE Director of Operations. As part of the senior management team, her responsibilities include overseeing the organization’s day-to-day and project-based activities.
Roman Kogan

Roman Kogan

Executive Director, Limmud FSU

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What is Limmud?

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Roman Kogan was born in Tallinn, Estonia, Roman emigrated to Israel in 1991. A graduate of Hebrew University’s Department of International Relations and Journalism, Roman was a press attaché in the Knesset, headed the press service of the Jewish Agency in St. Petersburg, and represented the Department of Education of the Jewish Agency in the Baltic states. Proficient in Hebrew, Russian, and English, Roman joined Limmud FSU in 2010 as chief operations officer and was promoted in 2014 to executive director.
Ron Mandel

Ron Mandel

Corporate coach and facilitator

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Networking 2.0. The long term value of creating personal emotional connections in your daily interactions

In this interactive session, you will discover that making heartfelt connections is the secret to building meaningful networks. People instinctively know when a person genuinely cares.

Personal Mastery: Discover and use your personal values to achieve greater fulfillment at work

In this interactive session, you will uncover what your most important values are today and how you can leverage them to guide the choices you make. Most of us live our daily lives rushing from activity to activity rules by time / the clock. Values help you prioritize where you focus, like a compass.

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Ron has been a coach and facilitator for more than 30 years where his focus is on building a values-based culture as the cornerstone to organizational success. Ron’s expertise is in leadership development – in reconnecting people to the leader within. In that capacity, he has consulted with multi-nationals in Canada, the US, Europe, China and India. He has lead change initiatives, conducted numerous sessions in Strategic Planning and Team Building, and designed and delivered programs in Performance Management. He has coached people from all walks of life – from executives of major corporations to youth.

Ron is certified in Creative Problem Solving with Synectics in Boston and in numerous leadership development programs. He has interned with University Associates and Esalen in California, the Gestalt Institute in Toronto. These, combined with his undergraduate degree in Engineering and graduate program in Environmental Studies, have laid the foundation for his work in Delivering Happiness at Work.

Ronen Israelski

Ronen Israelski

Documentary filmmaker

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The day I met Hitler

First Hand Accounts of Ordinary People Coming Face-To-Face With Hitler. A compelling combination of archival and up-close and visceral interviews with those who were there, and served the Nazi regime. “The Day I Met Hitler” transcends the written account and the scratchy news reel, bringing the past into a very real and personal present.

Racing against time, weaving together personal narratives of the last remaining people who had direct contact with Hitler. “The Day I Met Hitler” features newly discovered stories and images of the most infamous man in history.

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Ronen Israelski is a documentary filmmaker. Graduated from the prestigious Kent Institute of art in England, Ronen has been involved in the media industry for over 20 years. He was on the creative team who introduced Israel with the famous show “a star is born”. Israelski has been nominated for best documentary for his feature doc “Green eyes”. Several years ago he immigrated to Canada with his family and launched a career in television directing for American and Canadian broadcasters. Israelski has a “cutting edge” approach to documentary and his work receives excellent reviews from critics. His personal biography as a son of a holocaust survivor met his professional ambition with his latest project “The Day I Met Hitler”.
Sasha Sinay

Sasha Sinay

Founder and Artistic Director of SMILE GROUP CANADA

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Performing Arts Workshop

Have you ever tried juggling or using poi? Have you ever seen giant (almost) life size dolls moving on the stage? This highly interactive performing arts workshop will provide you with a unique opportunity to learn about the basics of the performing arts as well as it will allow you to get fully immersed into the magic of performing.

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Sasha Sinay is a Founder and Artistic Director of SMILE GROUP CANADA – Performing Arts Theatre for Kids and Teens in Newmarket, Ontario. SMILE GROUP CANADA performances and shows represent a unique combination of various Performing Arts techniques: Bubble Show, Juggling, Neon and Special Effects, as well as Giant Dolls.

Sasha Sinay and SMILE GROUP CANADA proudly represented Canada at various International Theater Festivals in Italy, Czech Republic, and Toronto International BuskerFest. This December, Sasha is taking SMILE GROUP CANADA on a performing tour to Washington, DC. Sasha Sinay accumulated over twenty years of experience as an Artistic Director, Theatre Instructor, Acting Teacher, Producer and Coordinator at Herzliya Municipal Theatre in Herzliya, Israel, directing and producing countless municipal and community events, as well as national and international festivals. One of her most successful projects was Theater-Group “Sharban” in Tel-Aviv, Israel.

Shai DeLuca-Tamasi

Shai DeLuca-Tamasi

Interior designer, TV personality

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From serving in the IDF to becoming a Canadian celebrity

Shai will take you through his path from serving in the IDF to becoming one of the most watched and followed Interior Design gurus in the country.

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Shai DeLuca-Tamasi is the founder and president of SHAI DELUCA INTERIOR DESIGN, located in what has been described as one of North America’s hottest design hubs, Toronto. SHAI DELUCA INTERIOR DESIGN’s residential practice is known for its distinct combination of contemporary appeal with traditional overtones, providing a classic yet timeless feel in a soothing and warmly understated manner. In 2011 Shai joined Canada’s top design professionals as an Interior Design Expert on Canada’s number one morning show: CityTV’s Cityline.  
Sigal Haber

Sigal Haber

Professor of entrepreneurship at Schulich School of Business, children book author

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A glance at entrepreneurship in Ontario and Israel

Sigal will present findings from a research done about entrepreneurship in Ontario from 2016, where Sigal had been involved in the Israeli team and on 2016 she led the Ontarian one. This research was part of an international longitudinal study that has been running since 1999 and includes over 60 countries. Sigal will present entrepreneurship model, characteristics and trends, followed by a discussion of practical implications, and also discuss how entrepreneurship grew in Israel in the recent years.

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Dr. Haber is an Adjunct Lecturer in entrepreneurship at Schulich School of Business. She earned her Ph.D. from Ben-Gurion University, Israel. She was an associate lecturer in entrepreneurship studies at the School of Management, Ben-Gurion University and at the Faculty of Management, Graduate School of Business Administration in Tel-Aviv University. Her interests include entrepreneurial process and strategy, tourism entrepreneurship, business incubators and family businesses. Her studies were presented in numerous international conferences and published in leading entrepreneurial and tourism academic journals including: J. of Business Venturing, J. of Small Business Management and Annals of Tourism Research.

In addition to her academic activity, she has been a consultant to the Israeli Ministry of Education in developing unique educational programs in Business Administration and Entrepreneurship. Prior to that as Head of the Research Marketing Unit and a member of the Marketing and Strategic Team of the Negev Tourism Development Administration in Israel.  

Tina Grimberg

Tina Grimberg

Rabbi, author, Jewish educator

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A Magic Night: Celebration of Shabbat through Soulful Music & Stories of the Heart

Join Rabbi Tina Grimberg, David Lefkowich and Debbie Gilbert in joyful song and soul provoking stories. For all ages (**With musical instruments)

Passion, Love and Couplehood in a Superficial World

With over 25 years of experience working with couples as a therapist, coach and rabbi, Tina Grimberg will reflect on the essential components of connection we all yearn for. Prepare for an honest look at our deepest desires for fulfilment and meaning in this challenging modern world. David Lefkowich will punctuate this session with stirring heartwarming music.

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Rabbi Grimberg grew up in the Ukrainian city of Kiev. She moved to North America with her family when she was sixteen. Rabbi Grimberg initially trained and worked as a family therapist. She has her rabbinical degree from Hebrew Union College’s Jewish Institute of Religion. She is the first female émigré from the Soviet Union ordained as a rabbi in North America. For the past ten years Rabbi Grimberg has served Congregation Darchei Noam in Toronto.

Her first book of memoirs, Out of Line: Growing Up Soviet, was published by Tundra Press in October 2007 and has won numerous awards. Rabbi Grimberg is a member of the Toronto Board of Rabbis, the Canadian Council for Reform Judaism, and is an associate of the Reconstructionist Rabbinical Association and the Central Conference of American Rabbis.

Yifat Bear Miller

Yifat Bear Miller

JNF Canada’s Education Emissary

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70 Years of Women’s Service in the IDF

The women in the Israel Defense Forces are female soldiers who serve in the Israel Defense Forces. Israel is one of only a few countries in the world with a mandatory military service requirement for women. The following presentation outlines the roles women have taken on in the army throughout the history of the Israel Defense Forces. Women have always taken part in Israel’s growing military, from the founding of the state in 1948 to the modern army of today. In the contemporary IDF, more and more roles are opening up to women as an increasing amount of units see the value in female combat soldiers.

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Yifat Bear Miller is JNF Canada’s Education Emissary. For the past seven years, she served as the Education Officer, holding the rank of Captain, at the IDF Junior Command Preparatory School in Haifa, where she oversaw 200 cadet students and a staff of 30 soldiers from the IDF Education Corps. She holds a master’s degree in Education from Hebrew University of Jerusalem, a bachelor’s degree in social work from Haifa University and a teacher’s certificate. For Yifat Shlichut means building and strengthening the connection to JNF and Israel. She wants to reach out to people across Canada providing Israel-focused programs and workshops with attention to youth programs, serving as a resource for all matters relating to the JNF and to Israel in general.
Quiz, Please!

Quiz, Please!

Intellectual entertainment game

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Квиз, плиз! – это самая массовая и популярная интеллектуально-развлекательная барная игра в России, которая теперь есть и в Toronto. В Квиз, плиз! играют и в Нью-Йорке, и в Тель-Авиве, и в Астане и даже в Петропавловске-Камчатском (где всегда полночь).

Мы приглашаем всех любителей необычного времяпрепровождения, где команды сразятся за право стать лучшей командой!

Your name could be here

Your name could be here

 

Join us as a Presenter at Limmud FSU Canada Conference