On Monday, May 10, we were joined by Ruth Wasserman Lande to discuss her first-hand experience as a woman in Israeli politics and diplomacy, her insider’s perspective on the Arab-Israeli conundrum, and her vision to eradicate violence in Israel.
Ruth Wasserman Levy was born in Israel and raised in Cape Town, South Africa. After arriving in Israel as an adult, she graduated with honors from Bar Ilan University and The Hebrew University of Jerusalem. In 2006, she was awarded a Wexner Fellowship to study for a Masters’ Degree in Public Administration at Harvard University, from where she graduated, cum laude, in June 2007.
Ruth served for three years as an analyst in Israeli Defense Force intelligence, rising to the rank of Captain. Ruth continues to do reserve duty as an analyst in the IDF. Professionally, Ruth served as an Israeli diplomat for 13 years in the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and was appointed to serve for three years, as the political and economic advisor in the Israeli embassy in Cairo, completing her service there as the de facto Deputy Chief of Mission. After graduating from Harvard, Ruth was appointed as Foreign Affairs and World Jewish Affairs’ advisor to former President of Israel, Mr. Shimon Peres.
She served for almost a decade as the Deputy Director General of the Israeli Federation of Local Governments, working with all Israeli Mayors, both Jewish and Arab, throughout the country.
Ruth worked on a voluntary basis, on the promotion and development of one of Israel’s poorest, mixed Jewish-Arab cities in Israel, Lod, where she also lived for a decade with her husband and three children.
She has also founded (2018) and continues to chair the “Hagshama” initiative, a non-for-profit and non-political NGO, for creating real impact on Israeli society via a country-wide initiative to transform one of the Bedouin villages in the North of the country into a model for emulation.
In July 2019, Ruth established her own strategic local and global consultancy which assists a wide variety of bodies and/or individuals -both Israeli and foreign- in identifying their needs, creating policy, establishing objectives and accompanying their accomplishment and fulfillment.
She is also a columnist in one of Israel’s leading dailies, in Hebrew, “Maariv”, and in the English-language “Jerusalem Post”. Ruth also often commentates on Regional and Arab-Israeli Affairs in local and international television channels.
Ruth has been a Member of Knesset representing the Blue and White.