The Forum for Jewish Leadership (FJL) is dedicated to identifying, inspiring and training a new generation of intellectually curious young Jews, providing them with the skills and confidence to be effective, committed leaders of the Jewish community and beyond.

We Believe

In the significance of Jewish ideas applied to all areas of contemporary living whether in the fields of ethics, law or effective leadership.

That engaging the most talented and ambitious young Jews is key to cultivating a strong and dedicated leadership base.

That this level of engagement can only be achieved by offering highly attractive and relevant courses and programmes, that combine meaningful content, mentoring and network opportunities.

Activity Worldwide

As well as our flagship internship programmes, we have a committed alumni base which provide a wealth of experience, connections and opportunities to help young Jews achieve their potential. FJL staff, together with their partners, offer regular events and programmes to continue the exposure and inspiration to engage further.

FJL Team

Ben Thwaites


Ben read Law at University College London before working at Herbert Smith until 2012. He spent four years in higher Jewish learning in Israel, and has been involved in community and leadership projects such as UCL Jsoc President, Ner Yisrael Youth Director, Har Etzion British Alumni Programmes Co-ordinator and informal educator for Immanuel College and Hasmonean. In his spare time, Ben continues to practice law and is the General Counsel for a number of Jewish charities, as well as running a family investment fund.

Effie Kleinberg

Educational Director

Effie grew up in Toronto and received his MA in Jewish Education, Semicha, and Doctorate in Educational Technology at Yeshiva University.

He taught Talmud and Jewish Thought at a number of high schools in New York and Toronto, and served as an OU-JLIC campus educator for University students.

Effie and his family recently moved to Israel, where he will continue his work with Jewish students and institutions around the world.

Daniel Beider


Daniel grew up in London and then went on to study in advanced Jewish learning in Israel, following which he read law at Cambridge University.  Upon graduation, he started his investment banking career at Chase Manhattan as a currency trader, after which he moved over to Corporate Finance roles at ANZ Bank and Royal Bank of Scotland. Eight years later, Daniel and his family moved to Israel, where he now spends his time on many interesting projects. Countless visitors to Jerusalem have been hosted in the Beider home, where they are exposed to Daniel’s unique blend of humour and real life experience, as well as his whiskey collection. Daniel is a popular speaker and understands the needs and aspirations of Jewish students and young professionals as they embark on their adult lives while seeking to reconcile their ambitions with their cultural heritage and identity.

Yael Seruya-Zdanowitz

International Project Co-ordinator

Yael Seruya grew up in Chicago, IL and received her BA from Touro College in Business and Judaic Studies. Fifteen years of working in Jewish education has provided her extensive experience and expertise in the field. Her journey started at NCSY (a Jewish youth organization) as City Director in Kansas City and in St. Louis. She was also the Director of Operations for THRIVE at Hebrew University, a semester abroad program for American students.Over the past decade, she’s served in many different roles at MEOR (a US-based educational program on university campuses), including working on campus at the University of Pennsylvania, conducting alumni followup and YP programming in New York City, and most recently overseeing the Poland trips for all the MEOR campuses. She moved to Israel four years ago and currently lives in Jerusalem.

Sandra Nagioff

UK Project Co-ordinator

Sandra grew up in Essex and has worked in the Jewish charity sector most of her working life.  She organised trips and events for the Community Security Trust and Norwood, working with Jewish community leaders such as Gerald Ronson, Richard Harrington MP and Richard Desmond.  Sandra currently lives in Hertfordshire with her husband and son and is crucial part of the FJL team bringing extensive experience in arranging and delivering FJL programmes.

Avital Bayer

Internship Co-ordinator

As well as working for FJL, Avital is a Venture Scout for Founders Factory and teaches a course at Midreshet Rochel on Female Leadership and morality in the workplace.   She also sits on the board of advisors for both WMN, a coworking space and ecosystem for female entrepreneurs, and Dreame, a technology company. Prior to this, she worked at a venture capital fund 83North (Greylock) where she was Head of Business Development.

Before moving to Israel she lived in London, where she worked for the Israeli Embassy, assisting Israeli companies and start-ups in developing their business strategy, raising capital, and securing clients and partners internationally.  

She holds a BA in Political Science and International Relations from the University of Birmingham.


Partner Educators

As part of FJL’s international network, we work with a number of highly talented and experienced educators.

Ms. Raizy Chechik

Rabbi Moshe Friedman

FJL UK Senior Educator 

Mrs. Shalvie Friedman


Lauren Breslauer

Non-Profit Consultant

Adrian Cohen

Partner, Clifford Chance.

Jonathan Fisher QC

Bright Line Law

Raizi Chechik

Head of Manhattan Day School

Rabbi Joseph Dweck

Senior Rabbi of the S&P Sephardi Community

Clive Freedman QC

Littleton Chambers

Malcolm Hoenlein

Executive Vice-Chairman of the Conference of Presidents of Major American Jewish Organizations

Senator Joseph I. Lieberman

Former US Senator for Connecticut

Dr. Leya Landau

Professor of English Literature NYU London 

Dalia Meshulam


Rabbi Andrew Savage

Director for Germany of the Ronald S Lauder Foundation, Trustee of FJL

Romie Tager QC

Head of Chambers, Selborne Chambers

Rabbi Mitchell Rocklin

Resident Research Fellow at Tikvah Fund

Dr. Alan Mendoza

Co-Founder and Executive Director of the Henry Jackson Society

Rabbi Benjy Levy

Dean of Moriah College (Sydney) and CEO of Mosaic United 

Moe Mernick

Author and Entrepreneur

Rabbi Josh Spinner

Executive Vice President and CEO of The Ronald S. Lauder Foundation

Asher Steene

Management Consultant at BCG, Trustee of FJL

Dr. Kenneth R. Weinstein

CEO and President, The Hudson Institute

Chief Rabbi Lord Jonathan Sacks

Honorary President

Rabbi Naftali Schiff

Vice-President, Trustee of FJL

Chani Hirsch

Chief Operating Officer, Windmill Hill Asset Management 


Forum for Jewish Leadership is a registered charity in England and Wales (no. 1139858) and a company limited by guarantee (no. 07453042)

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