The Center for Media and Democracy in Israel, Shomrim (the Guardians) is a nonprofit and non-partisan independent news organization. We empower the public and promote democratic discourse in Israel through investigative journalism and groundbreaking storytelling that sparks action. With our open call for proposals, the center is commited to uncovering the truth and providing the public with reliable and high-quality information on Israeli society and government across platforms and media outlets.
Shomrim was founded in correlation with the global rise of nonprofit media organizations.
Shomrim is committed to partnership and collaboration with existing media. It seeks to support and grow investigative and in-depth reporting skills across news outlets.
The founders of the Center are California-based philanthropists Laura and Gary Lauder; Bloomberg Senior Editor Ethan Bronner; venture capitalist and social activist Oded Hermoni; Prof. Moshe Zviran, Dean of the Coller School of Management at Tel Aviv University; Tamar Prizan-Litani, former deputy editor in chief at Haaretz; Photojournalist Vardi Kahana; and Yoel Esteron, founder and publisher of Calcalist. Esteron was voted to serve as chairman, alongside Hermoni and Laura Lauder. Prof. Zviran and New York-based lawyer Benjamin Zeliger will serve on the center’s audit committee.
Alona Vinograd, formerly the CEO of Israeli non-profit organization the Movement for Freedom of Information, will serve as CEO of the Center for Media and Democracy. Eyal Abrahami, former editor of G Magazine, published by financial daily newspaper Globes, will serve as editor in chief. Doron Sela is the project coordinator.
Several luminaries of Israeli media and journalism have agreed to serve on the organization’s advisory committee. These include Ilana Dayan, host of Channel 12 investigative TV show Uvda; Raviv Drucker, host of investigative television show Hamakor; Amos Harel, Haaretz; Guy Zohar, host of Mehazad Hasheni on KAN 11 channel; Ghada Zoabi, founder of Bokra.net; David Horovitz, The Times of Israel Editor in Chief.
More journalists will soon join.
Among the American senior journalists and media notables who will serve on the advisory committee are ProPublica President Richard Tofel; Bret Stephens, The New York Times; Rick Altabef, former senior legal counsel for 60 Minutes; Robert J. Rosenthal, former executive director of the investigative reporting site Reveal; Vivian Schiller, former president of NPR; Ellen Weiss, E. W. Scripps Company;
More leading figures in media will soon join.
Laura Lauder, one of the Center's founders said: “As the Washington Post masthead says: Democracy Dies in Darkness. We are here to support a strong democracy in Israel by philanthropically adding to the pool of investigative journalism efforts. By shining a light of transparency, we act as guardians of democracy.”
With the launch of the Center’s activity, CEO Alona Vinograd said: “We are not attempting to compete with local newspapers and media organizations, rather support them and empower Israeli media.”
Eyal Abrahami: “We will initiate the kind of projects most news organizations struggle to keep up in the day-to-day news grind and will welcome collaboration with all media organizations and social organizations.”
Alona Vinograd served as CEO of the Israeli non-profit organization The Movement for Freedom of Information from 2011 to 2015. The campaigns she led during her tenure helped bring the issue to the top of the public agenda inspiring greater public transparency and propelling the fight against corruption in education, healthcare, transportation, and other areas of government.
In 2015, Vinograd received the Rappaport Prize for Women Generating Change in Israeli Society, awarded to Israeli women who have accomplished outstanding achievements in public, social, community, or economic fields. Commenting on their selection, the judging committee said that Vinograd "has worked effectively and successfully to promote government transparency in Israel," has "successfully assisted dozens of social organizations in achieving their goals and empowering the populations they represent," and has "promoted the principles of transparency and freedom of information, which thanks to her efforts have become key issues on the public agenda."
From 2017 to 2019, Vinograd led the Center for Democratic Values and Institutions at the Israel Democracy Institute. In this role, she worked to safeguard the independence of Israel's judiciary system, helped bolster government institutions, and increased government transparency as an engine of trust.
Vinograd holds a Bachelor of Law from the Interdisciplinary Center (IDC) Herzliya and a BA in English literature from Tel Aviv University.
Senior journalist Eyal Abrahami has held a number of key reporting and editing roles in Israeli media. He served as a police reporter in Jerusalem, a news editor at the now-defunct Jerusalem weekly Kol Ha'ir, a reporter coordinator at the national daily newspaper Haaretz, and an investigative editor at the weekly magazine Sheva Yamim (seven days), part of the Yedioth Ahronoth media group.
From 2009 to 2018, Abrahami was the editor of G Magazine, published by the financial daily newspaper Globes. Together with the rest of the G editorial team, Abrahami defined a new and outstanding concept for a weekly economic magazine, one that included both news articles and long-form magazine pieces that delved into topics of economy and culture, tied together with unparalleled graphic design.
During his career, Abrahami covered significant news events, including the widespread protest against the Oslo Accords, the assassination of Israeli Prime Minister Yitzhak Rabin, the era of suicide bombings in Jerusalem in the 1990s, and the 2004 Indian Ocean tsunami disaster. Abrahami has written news reports and long-form articles on a wide range of topics, from taxation and economic analysis to vehicles and transportation.
Abrahami holds a BA in political science and international relations from the Open University of Israel.
Ron Schwartz has been a senior editor and writer for nearly two decades in the Israeli media.
He began his journalism career as a website news Editor on the Israeli sports channel, and as Chief Editor of his college student newspaper.
After graduating in 2004, Schwartz was part of the founding team of Globes G Magazine, which brought an innovative and unique mix of content to Israel's magazine scene.
At Globes, Schwartz served as G Magazine Editor in Chief from 2018-2019, overseeing hundreds of stories and special projects.
As the culture and theatre critic at Globes, Schwartz published a high profile weekly column for a decade. These days Schwartz also writes on a weekly basis on culture issues to Mako.
Schwartz is studying for an MA in Communication at the Reichman University. He has a BA in Journalism, Communication and Management from the College of Management Academic Studies. He studied Screenwriting and Play writing, as well as Product Management at the Technion - Israel Institute of Technology.
Before joining the Center for Media and Democracy, Doron Sela served as head of government relations at the Israel Democracy Institute. As part of her role there, Sela was responsible for promoting and implementing the institute's policy recommendations through strategic partnerships with government bodies and local organizations.
Sela holds a BA in journalism and communications and international relations, as well as a Master's degree in international relations from The Hebrew University of Jerusalem.
Between the years 2015-2021 Benny worked at the Israel Democracy Institute as an Administrative Coordinator of the Center for Democratic Values and Institutions and the Center for Religion, Nation and State.
beforehand, Benny worked as an Educational Programs Manager at the Continuing Education Unit of the Technion, in the Jerusalem extension.
Benny holds a Bachelor of Law from the College of Management and a Lawyers certification.
Miki Levi served in sevral editorial and writing positions at Maariv and Globes newspapers. Levi began his career as a columnist for Maariv, went on to the news desk and joined the editorial teams at the weekend supplement and the foreign desk. At Globes, Levi served as deputy editor of G magazine and as editor of the "Puenta" section, which aimed to bring as much information as possible in as few words as possible. As the section evolved infographics, images and digital means were increasingly used in lieu of long text.
Levi holds a multidisciplinary BA (cum laude) in Linguistics, Rhetoric and Digital Studies from Tel-Aviv University.
Shalita served as a reporter for the Globes daily’s G magazine from 2007 to 2020. Previously, she spent seven years as a staff writer for Yedioth Ahronoth’s Shiva Yamim supplement. She completed her military service in the IDF Spokesperson’s Unit and began her career in journalism in 1993 as a legal correspondent for the Yedioth Yerushalayim local newspaper from the Yedioth Communications Group. She then moved on to serve as a researcher for the Shetach Hefker media affairs television program on Channel One. Her feature writing began in 1997 at the Jerusalem-based Kol Ha’ir weekly from the Schocken Group.
She specializes in articles in the fields of politics, law and the media that offer a behind-the-scenes picture of the decision-making processes in Israel, and enjoys sketching a sociological profile of new phenomena in Israeli society. Among her work is a series of articles characterizing the changing electorate of the political parties in Israel.
Shalita holds a bachelor’s degree in psychology and communications and a master’s degree in communications, both from Jerusalem’s Hebrew University. She also has a master’s degree in screenwriting from Tel Aviv University’s School of Film and Television.
Dolev began his way in journalism as a production editor for the news pages of Yedioth Ahronoth and then went on to serve as editor of the front page of Haaretz. Alongside his editorial work, he played a part during this period of his career in the Pulitzer Prize-winning Panama Papers investigation, and also published a series of articles on the eviction struggles in Tel Aviv’s Givat Amal Bet and HaArgazim neighborhoods. Thereafter, Dolev worked as a researcher for Uvda, the investigative television program. From 2017 to 2021, he served as an investigative reporter and legal affairs correspondent for the Walla news site.
Dolev has published investigative reports on a wide range of subjects, including the conduct of the law enforcement system, the work of the Shin Bet security service, the Israel Police, and the State Attorney’s Office.
Dolev holds a bachelor’s and master’s degree in law from Tel Aviv University.
With over twenty years of experience and hundreds of in-depth features and investigative stories on the intersections between society, economy and politics, Shuki Sadeh is one of the most prolific writers and critical voices in investigative journalism in Israel.
Sadeh began his journalistic career in 2000 as a municipal reporter in the "Kol Ba'rama" newspaper in Ramat Hasharon and then in the Jerusalem weekly "Kel Ha'ir." In 2008 he started working for The Marker Weekly Magazine, the weekend supplement of the "The Marker". Over the years, Sadeh published many profile articles on senior figures. Among other stories, Sadeh exposed the network of political connections of lobbyist Boris Krasny; businessman Kobi Maimon; and published investigative reports on the businessman Moshe Hogg. Sadeh also took part in the Pulitzer Prize-winning international investigation "Panama Papers."
Sadeh holds a bachelor's degree in communication and management from the College of Management Academic Studies and a master's degree from the School of Public Policy and Administration at the Hebrew University.
Blau is a veteran investigative journalist with over 25 years of experience conducting complex investigations. His work revealed corrupt practices of top public figures, murky money trails of wealthy businessmen, military-related wrongdoings and more. Blau’s work has been published in Haaretz, BBC, Washington Post, AP, Harper’s Weekly, ProPublica, PBS, Nieman Reports, and other platforms. He is also a member of the International Consortium of Investigative Journalism (ICIJ). Under that capacity he was part of the Pulitzer Prize winning team that produced the Panama Papers, and together with Shomrim worked on Pandora Papers and other projects.
Blau was a 2014 fellow at the Nieman Foundation for Journalism at Harvard, where he researched various models for investigative journalism. In Shomrim Blau will keep conducting investigations, lead cross-border projects and promote Shomrim's cooperation with platforms across the globe.
Singer started her journalistic career as a broadcast journalist for Ynet and then moved on to Haaretz, where she coordinated the news desk reporters, was an editor for the news desk, a consumer reporter, and a crime reporter. She was also the newspaper correspondent in Kenya, Italy, and France. In 2009, she was appointed reporter for Uvda, the investigative TV show that featured her investigations on money and government, police and crime, health and welfare. After four seasons, she was appointed a political and investigative reporter for Calcalist. In 2018, she was a reporter and presenter for the Shetach Hefker investigative journalism documentary TV show for three seasons and conducted a series of investigations on cyber, kashrut, law, and politics. In 2019, her documentary MeToo - Revolution was aired on Kan11. Her work on the intrafamilial homicide of women in Arab society won her an international award from the EVZ Foundation - Remembrance, Responsibility, and Future.
Amun comes from the northern village of Yarka. While still in high school, he began his journalistic career filming news events for various media outlets. During his military service, he served in the IDF Spokesperson's Unit as an Operation Documentarian. In 2021 he joined Haaretz's "Haaretz-21" project, which aims to bring to the general public the diverse voice of the Arab community in Israel, and was one of its first-year graduates. Today he is a part-time photographer at Haaretz.
Amun is in his last year of graduate studies in film, political science, and international relations at the Open University.
Noam Tamari is a graphic designer and art director. Tamari has held various positions in leading media organizations in Israel. Among others, he managed the graphics departments for "Hadashot" newspaper and "Haaretz" newspaper and led them into the digital age. He was also a co-founder of the "Calcalist" newspaper.
The studio he owns specializes in content-richprojects, which include design, concept, and the development of advanced andefficient work processes, both in print and digital.
Laura Lauder is a native of Canton, Ohio, and journeyed to the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill and Seville, Spain for her undergraduate education. In 1992, she joined her husband Gary in their venture capital partnership, Lauder Partners, specializing in Internet and media investment.
Lauder now primarily focuses her efforts on strategic grant-making through the Laura and Gary Lauder Family Venture Philanthropy Fund and in numerous leadership capacities at local and national nonprofit organizations.
Lauder is a nonprofit entrepreneur. She is the founder of DeLeT: Day School Teaching through Leadership, a national Jewish Teach for America program that is a selective fellowship to recruit, train, and retain Jewish day school teachers in the U.S. DeLet is modeled on Lauder’s experience as a fellow in the Wexner Heritage Foundation. She is co-founder of the Jewish Teen Funders Network’s Foundation Board Incubator, which brings the success and impact of Jewish teen philanthropy programs across North America into cities around the world. Laura and Gary co-founded the Socrates Program of the Aspen Institute in 1996, which has convened over 6,000 young leaders worldwide to Aspen to participate in seminars and salons on the most challenging issues of the day. Lauder is the founder of a new gap year program at Duke University that seeks to encourage young people to take a gap year between high school and college to grow, explore, and serve.
Lauder also serves on numerous nonprofit boards. She is chair of the $2.1 billion Jewish Community Endowment Fund of San Francisco, on the board and executive committee of the San Francisco Jewish Federation. She serves on the advisory board of directors of Service Year Alliance, which creates opportunities for young adults to serve their country through a year of full-time community service. She serves on the board of trustees of the Aspen Institute, and the National Constitution Center board of directors. She has previously served on the boards of the National Public Radio Foundation and Spark Networks — an NYSE Amex Company and parent of JDate.
Lauder is active with the Young Presidents’ Organization (YPO/WPO), a global leadership network, and is a fellow of the Council on Foreign Relations. She was named one of “10 Women to Watch” by Jewish Woman magazine in 2004. She has won numerous awards, including Volunteer of the Year from the San Francisco Jewish Community Federation in 2011, the Jim Brooks Achievement Award in 2004, and the San Francisco Bay Area Dinkelspiel Young Leadership Award in 1999.
Laura is an avid cyclist and won a bronze medal in the Maccabi Games in Israel in the cycling time trial in 2009. While she is a political junkie, she hopes to never run for political office but is willing to climb any mountain on a bike. She lives in Silicon Valley with her husband, Gary. They are empty nesters as both of their children have graduated from college.
Gary Lauder is the managing director of Lauder Partners LLC, a Silicon Valley-based venture capital firm investing primarily in information technologies. He has been a venture capitalist since 1985, investing in over 125 private companies. In the 1980s, he worked at the venture firms of Aetna, Jacobs & Ramo Technology Ventures, as well as Wolfensohn Associates.
Lauder serves on the advisory board of Santa Clara University's Markkula Center for Applied Ethics and the Board of Governors of Alzheimer's Drug Discovery Foundation. He is the co-creator of the Aspen Institute's Socrates Society with Laura, his wife. He is a member of the inaugural class of the Aspen Institute's Henry Crown Fellowship Program.
Lauder holds a BA in international relations from the University of Pennsylvania, a BS in economics from the Wharton School, and an MBA from the Stanford Graduate School of Business.
Oded Hermoni's path into journalism began with his military service at the IDF Spokesperson's Unit. Following his release from the military, he took on several writing and editing roles in local newspapers in Jerusalem. One of his earliest published works, in 1996, covered Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu. Other published work later led to several investigations and indictments in the field of real estate and business. Hermoni then joined the team of economic reporters at Haaretz and later, The Marker, as a tech reporter and editor.
In 2006, Hermoni retired from journalism and entered the field of tech and venture capital. He founded and led the Israel Advanced Technology Industries (IATI) organization, and later became a partner at private investment firm Rhodium. Today, Hermoni manages U.S. venture capital firm J-Ventures, which invests in companies in Israel and the U.S. To date, he has worked with dozens of tech companies as an investor, entrepreneur, adviser, and board member.
Among other public roles, Hermoni is a member of the board of the Jewish Community Federation of San Francisco (JCF) and of the executive committee of the American Friends of the Hebrew University.
Hermoni has a Bachelor's degree in history, sociology, and anthropology, as well as an MBA, both from the Hebrew University of Jerusalem. He is a Wexner Fellow.
Yoel Esteron is the founder and publisher of the Israeli economic daily newspaper and website Calcalist.
Esteron began his career as a military and political correspondent for Israeli army radio, Galei Tzahal. He later worked as a broadcast reporter, TV news editor, and as a Washington, D.C.correspondent for Israeli media. Esteron served as editor in chief of the local newspapers Kol Ha'Ir (Jerusalem) and Ha'Ir (Tel Aviv). He was the editor in chief of the now-defunct newspaper Hadashot, and served as managing editor of two of Israel's leading daily newspapers, Haaretz and Yedioth Ahronoth.
Ethan Bronner is a Senior Editor at Bloomberg, where he writes and edits pieces on international politics.
Before Bloomberg, he spent 17 years at The New York Times, where he was Jerusalem bureau chief and deputy foreign editor. Bronner worked previously at the Boston Globe and Reuters. He was Jerusalem bureau chief for both.
Tamar Prizan-Litani has more than 30 years of experience in a variety of editorial roles at Haaretz. In her last role, until 2009, she served as the newspaper’s deputy editor in chief. Prior to that, she edited Haaretz’s op-eds and the weekend edition, served as deputy editor in chief of Haaretz’s weekly magazine, and worked as a news editor and translator.
Following her retirement from Haaretz, Prizan-Litani joined Keter Publishing House as an editor, and taught at the communication department at Sapir Academic College.
In 2010, she joined a volunteer mission to Katmandu, Nepal, where she worked with future work migrants, documented child labor, and taught communication and journalism to local youths.
In recent years, Prizan-Litani joined the board of the Docaviv International Documentary Film Festival in Tel Aviv.
A graduate of HaMidrasha art school, Vardi Kahana is a photographer, lecturer, and curator. She began her career in the early 1980s as a photographer for the now-defunct magazine Monitin, later joining the daily newspaper Hadashot, until it shut down in 1993. Since then, her work has been published by Haaretz, Yedioth Ahronoth, and other publications in Israel and abroad. As a photojournalist and as an artist, Kahana’s portraits express a highly local, socially-minded, and anthropological perspective.
Kahana received the Sokolov Prize in 2011, the first year it was extended to photojournalists. Commenting on her selection the award committee said, “Several of her photographs have become milestones of photojournalism in Israel.”
In 2012, Kahana was honored by the Israeli Ministry of Culture, and in 2019, she received the lifetime achievement award in photography from the Israel Museum, Jerusalem.
Kahana has published two photography books, Israeli Portrait and One Family. Her work is included in the collections of the Israel Museum and the Tel Aviv Museum of Art, as well as in private collections worldwide.
Moshe Zviran is a chair Professor of Information Technology at the Coller School of Management School and served as Dean of the School from 2014 through 2022. He is currently the Chief Entrepreneurship and innovation officer of Tel Aviv University and Head of the Bloomberg Sagol Initiative for City Leadership at Tel Aviv University. He is the director of the Coller Institute of Venture and the Eli Hurvitz Institute for Strategic Management.
Zviran has a B.Sc. degree in mathematics and computer science and an M.Sc. and Ph.D. in information systems from Tel Aviv University. His research interests include entrepreneurship and innovation, and information systems planning. Prof. Zviran has published numerous articles in leading academic journals and authored two books. He is also a consultant for leading organizations in Israel and abroad and serves as a board member in several companies and organizations.
In addition to his academic career, Prof. Zviran launched the idea of conducting comparative compensation surveys as an organization management tool. He founded "Zviran Salary Surveys," focusing on information technology and the tech industry in Israel. Over the years, Prof. Zviran has broadened the scope of his surveys to include a wide range of new industries and has become the leading expert in this field of compensation and executive compensation in particular.
In 1977 Altabef joined CBS, the American television network, where he served as legal adviser to CBS News, counseling 60 Minutes and CBS News' other broadcasts, specializing in investigative reporting. In the three decades in which he served as 60 Minutes' legal adviser, the hard-hitting program never paid out a penny in settlements, judgments or legal claims.
In 2011, after 12 weeks of retirement, Rick became the legal adviser to Univision News, the primary news source for Hispanic Americans. Rick stayed with Univision for seven years, working with award-winning investigative reporters on news stories of particular relevance to a vast Spanish-speaking audience. And again, during this time, Univision News did not pay out a penny in settlements, judgments or legal claims.
Rick was born in the Bronx in 1947, educated in the New York public schools, and attended Columbia College and Columbia Law School.
Ilana Dayan is a luminary of Israeli media, and her work has had a significant impact on public discourse in the country.
Dayan began her career during her military service, as a correspondent, producer, and editor for Israeli army radio, Galei Tzahal. Among other notable achievements, she was the first woman appointed parliamentary correspondent in the station's history. After her release from mandatory service, Dayan continued broadcasting for Galei Tzahal, where she still hosts a weekly current affairs broadcast.
Since 1993, Dayan has hosted Israeli investigative journalism show Uvda on Channel 12 (formerly Channel 2). In 2015, Dayan was awarded the Sokolov Prize. According to the prize committee, Dayan was honored for "a host of thorough, groundbreaking investigations, for her pioneering contribution to televised investigative journalism, for creating a new investigative language, and for serving as a paragon for a new generation of investigative journalists."
In 2009, Dayan received an award from the Movement for Quality Government in Israel, and in 2018, she was honored with a lifetime achievement award by the Israeli Academy of Film and Television.
Dayan holds a PhD in law from Yale University.
Drucker is one of Israel's leading investigative reporters. As the host of investigative television show Hamakor, aired since 2009, he has uncovered multiple cases of injustice and corruption within Israel’s government that resulted in a number of police investigations and indictments. Hamakor is a six-time winner of the Israeli Academy of Film and Television's award for best investigative television show. In 2011, Drucker received the Sokolov Prize, an honor granted to digital journalists. According to the prize committee, Drucker was honored for his collected works "conducted with depth and courage, and for investigations that uncovered alarming flaws and corruption in the Israeli political system in all its forms."
Drucker began his career as a journalist for daily newspaper Maariv. In 1998, he was appointed the political reporter of Israeli army radio, Galei Tzahal. Since 2003, he has held multiple roles at Israeli Channel 10 News (now Channel 13), including political commentator, reporter, and editor. In 2004, Drucker co-founded not-for-profit organization the Movement for Freedom of Information, and served as its chairman until 2016.
Drucker has published two books: Harakiri (2002), which analyzes former Prime Minister Ehud Barak's government, and Boomerang (2005), which he co-wrote with politician and former journalist Ofer Shelah, which investigates the failings of Israel's leadership during the period of the second Intifada.
Drucker has a Bachelor of Law from Tel Aviv University.
In 2012, Horovitz founded news website The Times of Israel, where he serves as editor in chief. The site covers news from Israel, the Middle East, and the Jewish diaspora, and employs an international team of bloggers. The website is available in English, Arabic, French, and Farsi. In 2019, Times of Israel launched a separate Hebrew website.
Horovitz previously served as a correspondent and later editor in chief of The Jerusalem Post. Horovitz has also reported on Israel for newspapers such as The New York Times, L.A. Times, and the Irish Times. He frequently appears as a commentator on international TV and radio newscasts, including on BBC, CNN, and NPR.
In 1995, Horovitz was honored with the B'nai B'rith World Center Award for Journalism. In 2015, the organization honored him with a lifetime achievement award.
Harel is a leading commentator and one of the most distinguished figures in Israeli media. Since 2007, he has served as the military commentator for Israeli daily newspaper Haaretz. For this role, he was awarded the Sokolov Prize for journalism in 2015.
Prior to his current appointment, Harel has served in several reporting and editorial roles at Haaretz, including as a military correspondent and night editor.
Harel has published three books. The Seventh War: How We Won and Why We Lost the War with the Palestinians (2004), co-written with Avi Issacharoff, deals with the second Intifada; 34 Days: Israel, Hezbollah and the War in Lebanon (2008), also co-written with Issacharoff, about the second war with Lebanon; and Te’da Kol Em Ivriya (in Hebrew: Let Every Israeli Mother Know), published in 2013, which deals with how the IDF trains new combat soldiers.
Harel is the editor and host of the Soul Food podcast broadcasted by Tel Aviv Radio, which is dedicated to soul music.
Harel has a Bachelor of Law from Tel Aviv University.
Ellen Weiss has been Chief of Washington Bureau and Vice President of The E. W. Scripps Company since February 2013. She oversees a staff of journalists producing original investigative and long-form documentary stories and series in video and audio.
Before she joined Scripps, Weiss was the executive editor at the Center for Public Integrity. She served as senior vice president of news at National Public Radio until 2011. At NPR, she oversaw the global expansion of NPR News, the creation of an investigative unit, podcasts, and the digital integration of the newsroom. Weiss joined NPR News in 1982. For 12 years, she was executive producer of the daily NPR news magazine All Things Considered.
In 2015, Weiss received her fourth Peabody Award for the Under the Radar investigative series exposing the issue of convicted military sex offenders who return to civilian life. The story led to the passage of a new law closing the military sex offender loophole.
Zohar began his career as a reporter for Israeli army radio Galei Tzahal, and later moved on to print media. In 1993, he became one of the founding members of the Channel 2 News Company. In 2001, he joined then-newly formed Channel 10 News Company, where he went on to assume a variety of roles. Among other things, Zohar hosted the channel’s nightly news show, where he crafted and honed the unique hosting style associated with him until today.
Zohar currently hosts KAN 11 channel’s current affairs show Me’hatsad Hasheni (from the other side), which deals with questions of media bias and the gap between reality and its media representation.
Ghada Zoabi is the founder and CEO of Bokra.net, a popular online news outlet and social platform for Israeli Arabs. Bokra offers a comprehensive and wide range of news, covering local, national, and global stories.
Under Zoabi's management, Bokra.net aims to provide news content that could help connect the local Arab society to the state of Israel. Today, Bokra.net, has a significant influence on the agenda of the Arab community in Israel.
Before establishing Bokara, Zoabi worked at the Israel Broadcasting Authority and at Channel 1 television station. During this time, she also served as a coordinator at a youth movement for Arabs and Jews in Haifa.
Zoabi was born and raised in Haifa and holds bachelor's degrees in journalism and education from Haifa University.
Among her philanthropic work, Zoabi is a member of various organizations promoting awareness of topics such as home safety, breast cancer, and the empowerment of people with disabilities. In recent years, she has focused on advancing co-existence between Arabs and Jews, initiating the first Arab and Jewish shared community center in Nazareth. Zoabi supports various organizations and institutions such as Umm El-Fahem Art Gallery, Celiac Foundation for Arab Sector, the Miriam Foundation for women with breast cancer in Israel, and the Jasmine Organization for women in business.
Richard Tofel was the founding general manager of ProPublica from 2007 to 2012, and served as its president from 2013 to September 2021.
He was formerly the assistant publisher of The Wall Street Journal and, earlier, an assistant managing editor of the paper, vice president, corporate communications for Dow Jones & Company, and an assistant general counsel of Dow Jones. More recently, he served as vice president, general counsel and secretary of the Rockefeller Foundation.
He is the author of several books including: A Federal Offense of the Highest Order: The True Story of How the Joint Chiefs Spied on Nixon, And How He Covered It Up (2019); Speaking Truth in Power: Lessons for Our Sorry Politics from Our Inspiring History (2018); Non-Profit Journalism: Issues Around Impact (2013); Why American Newspapers Gave Away the Future (2012) and Restless Genius: Barney Kilgore, The Wall Street Journal, and the Invention of Modern Journalism (2009).
Dina Temple-Raston is a special correspondent at NPR and the host and creator of "I’ll Be Seeing You,” a series of radio specials for the network about thetechnologies that watch us. Previously, she had been NPR's counter-terrorism correspondent for more than a decade, covering terrorist attacks in the U.S. and abroad, the evolution of ISIS, and radicalization. While on leave from NPR, she independently executive produced and hosted apodcast from Audible about adolescent decision-making called “WhatWere You Thinking?” The Washington Post called it “the podcast every parent needs to hear."
In 2014, she completed a Nieman Fellowship at Harvard University where, as the first Murrey Marder Nieman Fellow in Watchdog Journalism, she studied the intersection of Big Data and intelligence.
Prior to joining NPR in 2007, Temple-Raston was a longtime foreign correspondent for Bloomberg News in Asia and served as Bloomberg's White House correspondent during the Clinton Administration. She has written four books, including The Jihad Next Door: Rough Justice in the Age of Terror, about the Lackawanna Six terrorism case. She is a frequent contributor to the PBS Newshour, a regular reviewer of national security books for the Washington Post Book World, and also contributes to The New Yorker, The Atlantic, New York Magazine, Radiolab, the TLS, and the Columbia Journalism Review, among others.
She is a graduate of Northwestern University and Columbia University's Graduate Schoolof Journalism, and she has an Honorary Doctorate of Humane Letters from Manhattanville College.
Temple-Raston was born in Belgium and her first language is French. She also speaks Mandarin and a smattering of Arabic.
Lee is the founder of EXILE, a media company acquiring and developing original premium content for audiences across the U.S.and Latin America. Previously, Lee served as the chief content officer for Televisa, the leading Spanish media company, and Univision.
For almost eight years, Lee ran the news department at Univision. Prior to this, he founded AnimalPolitico, the leading political and investigative news site in Mexico. He also founded and led PageOne Media, publisher of PODER magazine in the U.S., Mexico, Colombia,Chile, Peru, Venezuela, which was sold in 2006.
At 25, Lee was appointed editor in chief of Cromos, the oldest magazine in Latin America. At 26, he was editor in chief of Semana, Colombia’s most influential magazine.
Lee produced the feature film Paraíso Travel, three seasons of El Chapo for Netflix, as well as the TVE mini-series Operación Jaque, which was nominated for an International Emmy. He made the first deal with Amazon in Mexico and has developed five series for Netflix. Lee has also produced several documentaries, including the award-winning documentary Science Fair (NatGeo), Outpost (HBO), Residente (Netflix), Jaque (NatGeo), and When Lambs Become Lions.
Lee is a board member of the Associated Press, the Committee to Protect Journalists, Columbia Journalism Review, the University of Chicago’s Institute of Politics, and the Hirshhorn Museum. He is an advisory board member for the Peabody Awards and an active member of the Council on Foreign Relations.
Bret Stephens is an op-ed columnist with the New York Times, a position he took in April 2017. He was previously deputy editorial-page editor for The Wall Street Journal and, for 11 years, its foreign affairs columnist. Before that, Stephens was editor in chief of the Jerusalem Post. He has reported stories from around the globe and is the recipient of many prizes, including the 2013 Pulitzer Prize for distinguished commentary, the 2017 Ellis Island Medal of Honor, and three honorary doctorates.
Stephens was raised in Mexico City and holds degrees from the University of Chicago and the London School of Economics. He is a co-founder, with Garry Kasparov, of the Renew Democracy Initiative, and sits on many trustee and advisory boards.
Rosenthal joined CIR as Executive Director in 2008, a position he held until 2017. When Rosenthal joined CIR it had a staff of 7. When he stepped down as executive director, CIR had a staff of over 70 and was widely recognized for the quality and credibility of its journalism and its constant innovation around story telling and distribution.
Rosenthal spent the bulk of his nearly 50-year career in journalism at The Philadelphia Inquirer, starting as a reporter and becoming its executive editor in 1998. He became managing editor of the San Francisco Chronicle in 2002. Rosenthal has worked for some of the most respected newspapers, including The Boston Globe and The New York Times, where he was a news assistant on the foreign desk and an editorial assistant on the Pulitzer Prize-winning Pentagon Papers project. As a reporter, Rosenthal won numerous awards, including the Overseas Press Club Award for magazine writing, and the National Association of Black Journalists Award for Third World Reporting.
Rosenthal is currently on the board of CIR and several other journalism nonprofits, or acting as an advisor. In 2018, Rosenthal was honored for his work as a Fellow of the Society of Professional Journalists for his "extraordinary contribution to the profession of journalism."
Schiller is a longtime executive at the intersection of journalism, media, and technology. She recently joined the Aspen Institute in a new position heading up programs across media, technology, and cybersecurity.
Before joining Aspen, Schiller served as the founding head of the Civil Foundation, an independent not-for-profit committed to the sustainability of trustworthy journalism around the world. She is also a strategic advisor to Craig Newmark Philanthropies.
Over the last 30 years, Schiller has held executive roles at some of the most respected media organizations in the world. She was president and CEO of NPR; global chair of news at Twitter; general manager of NYTimes.com; chief digital officer of NBC News; chief of the Discovery Times Channel, a joint venture of The New York Times and Discovery Communications; and head of CNN documentary and long-form divisions. Documentaries and series produced under her auspices earned multiple honors, including three Peabody Awards, four Alfred I. DuPont-Columbia University Awards, and dozens of Emmys.
Schiller is a member of the Council on Foreign Relations; and a director of the Scott Trust, which owns The Guardian.
In his 20 years at the Financial Times, Robert Shrimsley served as chief political correspondent, news editor and managing editor of its website FT.com. Shrimsley also writes a weekly satirical column for the FT magazine. Before joining the FT in 2000 he spent a decade at the Daily Telegraph as both a general and political reporter.
Shrimsley is a graduate of the London School of Economics.
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