We are a team of students from across Harvard University who want to share our passion for Israel with the broad Harvard community.
MAX AUGUST, FOUNDER AND CO-DIRECTOR
Max August is a senior at Harvard College studying Economics. He grew up in New York City and attended the Horace Mann School. Max has always had a deep connection to his Judaism but began getting involved with Israel when he got to college and felt true anti-Israel sentiment for the first time. He is committed to combating the apathy amongst most college students and broadening the reach of Israel programming. He will be starting work full-time in Fall 2020 at General Atlantic, where he will be focused on Israeli technology investments. He has three younger siblings and enjoys playing tennis in his spare time.
SAM SWARTZ, CO-DIRECTOR
Sam will graduate from the Harvard Business School in May, 2020. During his MBA summer internship, Sam worked for General Catalyst, a Cambridge-based VC firm, and focused on sourcing Israeli technology companies. Sam co-led the HBS Israel trek, which was the highlight of his time in Cambridge. Prior to school, Sam spent nearly five years at the Bridgespan Group, a leading social impact advisory firm, working from their New York office.
AIDAN GOLUB, DEPUTY DIRECTOR
Aidan Golub is a first-year student at Harvard College from Westchester, New York. He was instilled with a love for the State of Israel at a young age, attending the Solomon Schechter School of Westchester, a Jewish day school, from Kindergarden through 12th grade. After spending the last semester in Israel, Aidan is excited to be leading the underclassmen efforts of the Summit, looking to continue the growth of this powerful and timely national movement. At the College, he plans to study Applied Physics and is actively involved in theatre and Jewish life outside of the classroom.
SHAI KIVITY, CO-DIRECTOR OF HARVARD KENNEDY SCHOOL PROGRAMMING
Shai A. Kivity is dual Harvard Kennedy School MPA, Wharton MBA student from Israel. Shai served in the Israel Defense Forces for 9 years as part of the prestigious Talpiot elite program. As a Major in the IDF, Shai Won the 2015 Israel Defense Award (associate winner), Israel’s highest security award, as well as several other awards. Shai’s professional experience includes leading highly complex technological projects that require the combination of both policy and technological expertise. Shai also holds a Bachelor's in Physics and Computer science and a Master's in International Relations. His hobbies include hiking and language learning and he speaks five languages, including Arabic and Chinese.
CO-DIRECTOR OF HARVARD LAW SCHOOL PROGRAMMING
Solange Etessami is a 3L at Harvard Law School from Los Angeles, CA. She serves as the president of the Alliance for Israel and as the vice president of the Jewish Law Students Association at HLS. Solange graduated with a BA in Media Studies from Berkeley in 2016.
CO-DIRECTOR OF HARVARD KENNEDY SCHOOL PROGRAMMING
Shahar Brukner is a Harvard Kennedy School MPP student from Israel. Shahar was born and raised in Haifa and served for 3 years in the “Golani” infantry brigade. After the army, Shahar pursued a joint degree in law and economics from the Hebrew University of Jerusalem, focusing his studies on international and administrative law. After graduating and before coming to Harvard, Shahar worked with the Israeli Attorney General, focusing on complex criminal cases and systemic criminal law reforms. During his time in Harvard, Shahar serves as the co-chair of the Harvard Kennedy School Israeli Caucus.
SHIRA SHAMIR, CO-DIRECTOR OF HARVARD LAW SCHOOL PROGRAMMING
Shira Shamir is a third year law student (3L) at Harvard Law School from New York. She is co-President of the Harvard Jewish Law Students Association and a Trip Leader for Harvard Law's Annual Spring Break Israel Trek. Shira completed her B.A. in International Relations at Tufts University in 2014.
SARAH ARATEN, DIRECTOR OF SPECIAL OPPORTUNITIES FAIR
Sarah Araten is a senior at Harvard College concentrating in Chemical & Physical Biology with a citation in Spanish. She first explored Israel through her Judaic studies courses at the Ramaz school, and over the Harvard Birthright trip. She has participated in the Onward Israel program, doing research in a lab at the Hebrew University in Jerusalem that focused on the correlation between specific genes in cancer cells. On campus, Sarah is involved in Jewish life at Harvard Hillel, as well as theater productions and biochemistry research.
CALEB ESRIG, DIRECTOR OF CONTENT
Caleb is a senior at Harvard College studying Economics and Astrophysics. He is originally from New Rochelle, New York, where he attended Solomon Schechter School of Westchester. Caleb loves traveling, and he has studied in Madrid, Spain and worked in Tel Aviv for the Moshe Dayan Center. He is involved with Harvard's First-Year Outdoor Program and The Crimson, Harvard's student-run newspaper.
REBECCA ARATEN, PRESS COORDINATOR
Rebecca is a sophomore studying History and Literature and Women, Gender, and Sexuality. When she's not in the Hillel building, she is most likely singing in the Radcliffe Choral Society or organizing against sexual assault on campuses. She spent the past summer living in Jerusalem, as a journalism intern for the Jerusalem Post.
NAOMI FREILICH, DIRECTOR OF TECH FAIR
Naomi Freilich is a freshman at Harvard College. She grew up in New York City where she attended the Ramaz School. Naomi’s love for and connection to Israel were fostered at a young age through her education at Ramaz and Jewish summer camp. This past year she attended Midreshet Lindenbaum in Jerusalem where she was able to enrich her Judaism and connection to the Land of Israel.
ILAN GOLDBERG, DIRECTOR OF ADVISORY COUNCIL
Ilan is a senior at Harvard College studying Government and minoring in Philosophy, with a language citation in Modern Standard Arabic. He is from Mexico, but his family now lives in Raanana, Israel, and although he has now lived in the US for a long time, he plans on joining his family in Israel after graduation. During his time at Harvard Ilan has been very involved with Israel programming, which has led him to be part of the amazing team behind the Israel summit, for the second time now.
ABIGAIL HUEBNER, DIRECTOR OF EXECUTION
Abigail is a freshman from New York City, where she attended the Ramaz School for 15 years. She has always been very connected to Israel, and spent the past year on a gap year in Israel studying Jewish texts.
GABRIEL KORISH, DIRECTOR OF STUDENT OUTREACH
Gabriel is a first-year student interested in studying computer science and biology. He hopes to spread understanding about all of the different sides of Israel and to inspire students to think for themselves and promote a productive culture of compassion, fairness, and open-mindedness.
BEN RABINOWTZ, DIRECTOR OF FUNDRAISING
Ben is a Junior at Harvard College, where he concentrates in Applied Mathematics with a focus in Economics and is pursuing a secondary in Music. He grew up in New York City, where he attended the Ramaz School. Before college, Ben spent a year at Yeshivat HaKotel in the Old City of Jerusalem, where he studied Talmud and Philosophy. Outside of his involvement with the Israel Summit, Ben is passionate about the intersection between sports and Jewish values, highlighted by the Harvard Jewish Sports Initiative which he recently founded.
Betsey Bennett is a freshman at Harvard College studying psychology and education. She is from New York City, where she attended Horace Mann School. Betsey became particularly passionate about Israel advocacy after competing in the 2017 Maccabiah Games in Israel as a swimmer. She is dedicated to reminding people about all of the positive contributions that Israel has made to the world. In her free time, Betsey enjoys trying new restaurants, exploring art galleries, attending concerts, and spending time with her two younger brothers.
SHLOMO ZACH CAHLON
Shlomo Zach Cahlon is a junior at Harvard, living in Winthrop House, and pursuing a joint degree in Computer Science and Astrophysics with a secondary degree in the Comparative study of Religion. Shlomo came to Harvard after 4 years serving as a Army Technology officer in the IDF. At Harvard, Shlomo is a Grinspoon Fellow, leads the Harvard Israel Trek, is the International Officer of the Harvard College Veterans Club, takes part in the Youth Leadership Club, and is on the editorial board of The Crimson. Shlomo is committed to create a community across campus that makes Harvard feel like home. He has three older siblings and enjoys swimming, hiking and watching comedy shows.
I am a freshman from New York City. At Harvard, I live in Hollis, and I plan to study some variation of economics, history, and government. I am a member of the TAMID group, a consulting club that works with Israeli startups, Harvard Investment Agency, and I am part of the advisory committee for this year’s Israel Summit. In my free time, I enjoy reading, watching the New York Jets, and surfing.
Sabrina is originally from just outside of Poughkeepsie, New York. She is a member of the Class of 2023 and plans on studying Government at Harvard. In addition to serving on the Advisory Committee of the Israel Summit, Sabrina is also a research assistant in the Harvard Government Department, Chair of the Campaigns and Advocacy Program at the Institute of Politics, Co-Vice President of Harvard Democracy Matters, is a member of the Small Claims Advisory Service, and is on the Reform Leadership Team at Harvard Hillel.
Kate Klein is a freshman at Harvard College. She grew up in New York City where she attended the Dalton School. Kate has always placed a high value on her Jewish heritage, but her connection to Israel was strengthened when she had her Bat Mitzvah atop Masada. She is excited to work with the incredible Israel Summit team to provide students with a more complete understanding of Israel. She has one younger brother and loves writing for the Crimson, singing, and playing the ukulele.