Hagai Agmon-Snir, PhD


Hagai has been the director of the Jerusalem Intercultural Center since its establishment in 1999.  In his work at the JICC, Hagai develops and implements models for making Jerusalem a culturally competent city for all its residents. In 1995-1997, Hagai was a researcher at the U.S National Institutes of Health (N.I.H.) and then returned to Jerusalem, where he graduated the Mandel School for Educational Leadership. During this period, he focused on multicultural models that combine different fields, such as political philosophy, conflict management, dialogue, community development and project management. He holds a Ph.D. in Computational Neuroscience, Hebrew University, Jerusalem.

Vardit Nehemia-Haik, MBA

Director of Operations

Vardit has been the Director of Operations since 2011, maintaining the JICC's everyday operations and ongoing administrative support. This includes human resources and budgetary fields, such as staff salaries and welfare, follow-up of personnel processes, implementation, bookkeeping and overseeing the budget. Vardit previously worked as a Human Resources Coordinator at the Yes Satellite Television company, where she oversaw the human resource needs of different and varied populations. She holds an MBA from the Ramat Gan College, with a specialty in Human Resources.

Batul Mohammad Abu Alhawa

Assistant to MiniActive Director

Batul joined the JICC staff in late 2018 as an Assistant to the MiniActive Director, helping to coordinate MiniActive activities throughout the city.  Before coming to MiniActive Batul studied to be a medical secretary and worked at a local HMO.

Mohammed Akeel

Rights Consultant, Attaa

Mohammad serves as the Rights Consultant at Atta'a, helping Palestinian residents of East Jerusalem receive the social, health and educational rights that are guaranteed them by law. Muhammad has been associated with Atta'a since its establishment in 2005, first as a volunteer and then (since 2009) as a reception hours coordinator. Prior to working at Ata'a Muhammad worked at a cellular phone company for two years and as an instructor and exhibit technician at the Bloomfield Science Museum Jerusalem. Muhammad is studying nursing at the Henrietta Szold Hadassah - Hebrew University School of Nursing.

Tal Alafi

Program Associate, Multicultural Activism

Tal joined the JICC in February 2019, helping Jerusalemite initiatives and activists who seek to advance tolerance in the city. Tal is also coordinating Jerusalemite Day of Diversity, which will feature dozens of events, which spotlight numerous cultures, ethnicities and backgrounds, throughout the city on Jerusalem Day. Tal is studying toward her B.A. at the Shalem College in Jerusalem.

Daud Alian

Director, Atta'a

Daud joined the JICC staff as the Director of the Atta'a Assistance Center for the Rights of Palestinian East Jerusalem Residents in 2015. Atta'a was founded in 2004, with a goal to help Palestinian East Jerusalem residents to access basic rights that are guaranteed them by government and other national agencies. Today it operates under the aegis of the JICC. Before directing the organization Daud was an active volunteer. He also directed the Community Schools program in East Jerusalem, which aims to strengthen the connection between local schools and their communities. Daud also directed a center for youth at risk, and worked for a number of human rights organizations in Jerusalem. Daud holds a B.A. in psychology from the College of Academic Studies in Or Yehuda.


Rachelly Ashwall, Ph.D.

Rachelly joined the JICC in January 2020, and is covering the maternity leave of Desk Director Orna Shani-Golan. In addition to her work at the JICC, she is a co-founder and a director of “Agree-Online”, a startup educating conflict resolution in the social-media and digital environment. She is also a professional mediator, a trainer and a facilitator of mediation & negotiation workshops.  In addition, she is a post-doctorate researcher at the Center of Jewish and Democratic Law, At the law faculty in Bar-Ilan University. She holds a PhD in Conflict Resolution, Management and Negotiation from Bar Ilan University. She wrote her PhD on the impact of joint learning programs on the identity-based conflict between Haredi and non-Haredi in Israel. 

Marie Avigad

Project Manager, Cultural Competency Desk

Marie joined the center in 2015 as the project manager for the Santé Israel project, a French-language web site that provides information on all aspects of the Israeli health care system with the aim of serving the French-speaking community in Israel and abroad. In addition to her work at the JICC Marie is a translator and interpreter for various Israeli and international societies. Marie received her M.Sc. in Pharmacy from Aix-Marseille University in France and her M.A. from the Department of Translation Studies at Bar-Ilan University.

Anwar Ben-Badis, PhD

Arabic Language Teacher

Anwar teaches Arabic for communication at various levels to groups of students at the JICC, since 2010. Language teaching, for Anwar, includes the enhancement of cultural knowledge among his students. Anwar believes that learning a new language enables equal reciprocity in interactions between people of different backgrounds.  He also teaches Aramaic at Hebrew University while also working in the field of interpretation. Anwar holds a Ph.D. in Linguistics from Hebrew University and a Masters in Linguistics from Geneva University (HEI)

Ezadeen El-Saad

Director, East Jerusalem Desk

Since joining the JICC in 2009, Ezadeen has been instrumental in developing and implementing community development and cultural competency programs in East Jerusalem. Before that, he worked for over 20 years in community development and cultural management in the Arab sector, including cross-cultural group facilitation/mediation. During this time he was instrumental in establishing and managing community centers in Jerusalem and around Israel, and has initiated processes to advance the Palestinian population. He holds a B.A. from Hebrew University of the Jerusalem and is certified in Group Facilitation by the Zippori Center.

Shira Gilboa

Administrative Coordinator

Shira joined the JICC in 2018, helping Vardit in developing organizational structures and procedures. Previously Shira was responsible for rehabilitation and welfare for the Jerusalem region of the Israel Cancer Association, and continues to work in parallel as a counselor for children with behavior and emotional difficulties, as well as a private tutor. Shira holds a Bachelor's degree in social work from the Hebrew University of Jerusalem and a certificate in group facilitation. In parallel to her work at the JICC, Shira is studying for a certificate in interior design from the Technion Israel Institute of Technology.

Samar Hammad

Assistant to MiniActive Director

Samar joined the JICC staff in late 2019 as an Assistant to the MiniActive Director, helping to coordinate MiniActive activities throughout the city. Previous to MiniActive, Samar worked and volunteered in many organizations, such as a center for early intervention for children, a Center for Rehabilitation and Training of Blinds Girls, and INJAZ, all in Jordan. After finishing high school Samar studied courses in human development, NGO management, human resources, beginners and advanced IT courses, also in Jordan.

Merav Horovitz-Stein

Coordinator, Window to Mt. Zion

Merav joined the JICC staff in 2015 as the Project Coordinator for "Window to Mt. Zion", a joint project with Search for Common Ground in Jerusalem. This project aims to increase awareness to Mt. Zion, deepen the understanding of the people, institutes, issues etc. there, and enhance collaboration among all relevant stakeholders to address religious tensions. Merav is also a professional tour guide, and has guided groups from Israel and abroad for the past ten years. Before coming to the JICC she coordinated tours and educational programs for Yad Izhak Ben Tzvi in Jerusalem. Merav holds a B.A. in Geography from the Hebrew University of Jerusalem.

Nadine Kamar

Health Rights Consultant, Atta'a

Nadine joined the JICC and Atta'a staff in 2018 after a year of volunteering at Atta’a, as the health rights consultant in Atta’a. Nadine helps Palestinian residents of East Jerusalem receive their health rights guaranteed by law, raising the awareness of residents in East Jerusalem of their health rights and the health system in Israel. Nadine writes simplified content about health rights for Attaa’s website and social media, which facilitates the process of learning about their rights and obtaining them. She also helps people with filling out and submitting the required forms. Nadine holds a B.A. in International Relations and German Language and Literature from the Hebrew University of Jerusalem.

Tal Kligman

Director, Deliberative Democracy Desk

Tal directs the Deliberative Democracy Desk, which works to utilize participatory methods to engage residents in becoming active in their communities to advance social change. She is also responsible for the JICC's work with refugees and asylum seekers living in Jerusalem. Tal has been leading JICC activities to foster intercultural understanding and community activism since 2004. Concurrent to her work at the JICC, Tal works as a multi-cultural, conflict and dialogue group facilitator. For the past 15 years Tal has worked as a project manager, trainer and group facilitator in organizations involved in informal education in the fields of Jewish education, dialogue education and program development. She holds an M.A. in Policy and Education Management and a second M.A. in Special Needs Education, all from the Hebrew University of Jerusalem. She has also earned group facilitator certificate from the Zippori Center in Jerusalem.

Intisar Qaraeen, MBA

MiniActive Director in East Jerusalem

Intisar has been directing the MiniActive Network of Palestinian Women in East Jerusalem since January 2014, and has been involved with the project since 2014. During that time she has developed the 1,000-women network, one of the largest volunteer networks in East Jerusalem, engaging members' personal obligation to beautiful and clean environment in their neighborhoods and communities. She organizes and conducts training and personal development courses for the network's members, which today has expanded to include youth as well as women. The highly-successful results on the ground have engendered trust within the community, fueling further success and growth. Before coming to the JICC, Intisar taught mathematics to grades 5-10 at the Promise School in 2012-2013. From 2011 – 2013 she also worked at a school for special needs children as part of the Perach student volunteer project. Intisar holds a B.Ed. in secondary mathematics from the David Yellin Academic College of Education, and an MBA in organizational management from the Ono Academic College.

Hiba Qawasmi

Arabic Language Teacher

Hiba joined the JICC in 2017 as an Arabic Language Teacher. Passionate about languages, Hiba speaks English, Hebrew, French and Turkish. She has taught Arabic in a number of frameworks for non-Arabic speakers, trying to bring the language alive through stories about her culture, life and everyday thoughts, and she encourages her students to do the same. In addition to teaching, Hiba works as a translator and participates in public panels, telling her story about living in Jerusalem as a Palestinian. She holds a B.A in French Literature and Islamic and Middle Eastern Studies, as well as a teaching diploma of Arabic language, from the Hebrew University of Jerusalem.

Naomi Roff Kohn

Resource Development Director

Naomi has been the Resource Development Director for the JICC since 2010, which includes writing and translating reports and proposals, as well as writing content for and maintaining its web site and blog posts. She is also a Senior Writer at the Jerusalem Foundation, writing project reports and proposals since the year 2000. Since 2006 she has specialized in coexistence (both Jewish – Arab and religious-secular Jewish) projects, and community empowerment. Naomi holds an M.A. in Islamic and Middle Eastern Studies from the Hebrew University of Jerusalem, and a B.A. in Middle Eastern Studies from Barnard College of Columbia University, USA.

Shaher Salaime

Facility Manager

Shaher is the JICC Facility Manager, making sure that our beautiful and historical building and garden are clean and in working order. Before coming to the JICC, Shaher worked for 10 years in maintenance at prestigious hotels in Jerusalem. Shaher trained as an auto mechanic, and he worked for the Jerusalem Ford dealership for 17 years, before an injury forced him to switch professions.

Michal Schuster, PhD

Cultural Competency Senior Consultant and Facilitator

Michal is a consultant and facilitator for the JICC’s Cultural Competency in Health Care project since its inception in 2007. As part of the Cultural Competency in Health Care program, Michal trains care providers and consults organizations for culturally-appropriate care and service. She is also a researcher and trainer in medical interpreting and cultural competence in a number of frameworks. She lectures at Bar Ilan University, and specializes in in-service training in community and medical interpreting. From 2006 - 2012 Michal managed the first telephone medical interpreting service in Israel for Ethiopian-Israeli patients and their care providers. Michal received her B.A. in International Relations and Linguistics from the Hebrew University in Jerusalem and her M.A. and Ph.D. from the Department of Translation Studies at Bar-Ilan University.

Aliza Shabo-Hayut

Director, Community Dialogue Program

Aliza joined the JICC staff in 2015, as Director of the Community Dialogue Program. Aliza has 30 years experience in community education, empowerment and development work. She has held senior positions at the Jerusalem Municipality, from Director of Strategic Planning Department to Director of the Department of Early Childhood in the Welfare Department. Since 2005 she has directed her own company, Etgarei Enosh (Human Challenges), which provides organizational consulting, project management, coaching, and more. Aliza holds a master's degree in policy and administration from the Hebrew University of Jerusalem, as well as a master's degree in criminology, also from Hebrew University.

Orna Shani-Golan, MBA

Director, Cultural Competency Desk

Orna became the Director of the Cultural Competency Desk in 2014, but has been working with the JICC since 2006.  In addition to her work at the JICC, she lectures on communication at the nursing schools of Wolfson (Holon), Sha'are Zedek (Jerusalem) and Kaplan (Rehovot) hospitals. She is the former Director of the Community Mediation section of Mosaica, the Center for Conflict Resolution by Agreement, where she worked to make mediation more accessible to the different communities in Jerusalem and to advance multicultural dialogue. She also accompanies the Department for Social Integration in Lod, in assimilating cultural competency in the local Municipality. Orna holds an MA in the Program for Conflict Research of the Swiss Center for Conflict Research at the Hebrew University of Jerusalem, and an MBA from the Academic College of Management.

Suha Taweel – Kadry

Arabic Language Teacher

Suha has taught Arabic for communication at the JICC since 2005. She is an experienced Arabic instructor, teaching all levels of literary and spoken Arabic to groups and individuals. She has taught Arabic for communication for the past 15 years, at institutions and organizations such as: Ha’aretz newspaper, ALYN Rehabilitative Hospital, Machsom Watch, and more. As in the Arabic saying, “Language is a mirror of culture,” Suha has also worked as a Hebrew – Arabic as well as Arabic – Hebrew translator, both in written and in simultaneous translation. Suha sees the natural and indistinguishable connection between language and culture, and strives to combine both culture and language in the learning experience she provides. Suha holds a B.A. in Arabic Language and Literature from the Hebrew University of Jerusalem.

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