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Alexander Muss Institute and Jewish National Fund

Contact: Rabbi Eric Lankin • Chief, Institutional Advancement and Education, JNF • 212-879-9305 ext. 264 • / • Marni Mandell • CEO, AMIIE • 800-327-5980 •

August 31, 2006 -- New York, NY -- To capitalize on their respective strengths and on new synergies created by working together, Jewish National Fund (JNF) and The Alexander Muss Institute for Israel Education (AMIIE) are pleased to announce a new alliance.

 Long recognized as the leader in academic high school education in Israel for American students, AMIIE, also known by its flagship program, The Alexander Muss High School in Israel (AMHSI), will maintain its own corporate governance structure. JNF will assume responsibility for most of AMIIE’s marketing and technology functions and its operations will be supervised by JNF as part of its education efforts.

AMIIE’s national office will now be located in JNF’s New York headquarters and will be run by a new Chief Executive Officer, Marni Mandell, who joins AMIIE after four very successful years as director for Otzma, a year-long post college program in Israel.

“The alliance with AMIIE dovetails perfectly with the mission of JNF’s Israel Advocacy and Education Department,” said JNF’s Chief Executive Officer Executive Russell F. Robinson. “We have created the mechanism to fulfill the mandated task set forth by the World Zionist Organization ‘to provide Zionist education in the Diaspora.’ Our work that begins on the elementary school level and continues all the way up to the university level brings greater understanding and pride to every Jew for the miraculous achievements of the people and State of Israel and its supporters around the world. Working more closely with AMIIE will allow us to further our fulfillment of that vital task.”

“The future for AMIIE is exciting, both from the perspective of its potential growth and the educational value it imparts to its students,” said AMIIE Board Chair Bob Werner.

AMIIE’s unique approach to education—characterized by classroom education for high school and college credit combined with tiyulim, trips, to historic sites in Israel—will remain based in Hod Hasharon, Israel under long-time executive director Chaim Fischgrund.

Also joining this new alliance is IsraelExperts, a leading provider of informal education tours and other services to many different groups including Taglit birthright Israel. Using a team of in-house educators, tour operators, as well as marketing and IT professionals, IsraelExperts brings an added dimension of the latest high tech approaches to marketing and recruitment.

Joe Perlov, IsraelExperts CEO, is also excited about working with AMIIE and JNF. “Many of us know and have personally experienced the transformative power of an Israel experience in our own lives,” he said. “It can make all the difference in strengthening and deepening the connection of our students to their faith, to their history, to the Jewish people and to the State of Israel.”

AMIIE, JNF and Israel Experts will join forces to expand and enhance the core program, High School in Israel, and the uniquely designed programs offered to day schools partners. New programs are also planned for the future for other target groups, making the three organizations a one-stop shop for many teen and adult education trips. Discussions are also underway for as many as four new AMIIE campuses in Israel, to accommodate a total of 5,000 students each year, starting with a new campus in the Negev as part of JNF’s Blueprint Negev, its campaign to develop the Negev Desert for an additional 250,000 - 500,000 people.

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JEWISH NATIONAL FUND (JNF) began in 1901 as a dream and vision to reestablish a homeland in Israel for Jewish people everywhere. Jews the world over collected coins in iconic JNF Blue Boxes, purchasing land and planting trees until ultimately, their dream of a Jewish homeland was a reality. JNF gives all generations of Jews a unique voice in building a prosperous future for the land of Israel and its people.

JNF embodies both heart and action; our work is varied in scope but singular in benefit. We strive to bring an enhanced quality of life to all of Israel’s residents, and translate these advancements to the world beyond. JNF is greening the desert with millions of trees, building thousands of parks, creating new communities and cities for generations of Israelis to call home, bolstering Israel’s water supply, helping develop innovative arid-agriculture techniques, and educating both young and old about the founding and importance of Israel and Zionism.

JNF is a registered 501(c)(3) organization and United Nations NGO, which continuously earns top ratings from charity overseers.

For more information on JNF, call 888-JNF-0099 or visit


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