Southern Arizona Jewish community member Billie Kozolchyk shares her thoughts on a broadcast:
I recently watched a discussion entitled “Life in Mixed Cities: What’s Next?” a part of the “Complicated Questions” series. I found it gripping and enlightening; I cried, laughed, and learned. The moderator, Yizhar Hess, a tenth generation Jerusalemite, has a deep connection to our Southern Arizona Jewish community. Yizhar has earned multiple advanced degrees, both in Israel and England, and has had a remarkable professional career, the seeds of which were planted in Tucson. He served as as the Jewish Agency’s community shaliach to Tucson from 2000 to 2003. While here, he attended his first bat mitzvah at Congregation Anshei Israel. In his words, “I left Israel an Israeli and came back from the United States Jewish.” That new identity led to his becoming the Executive Director of the pluralistic, egalitarian Masorti Movement in Israel from 2007 to 2020 and he is now Vice Chairman of the World Zionist Organization. I am proud that I was able to volunteer in activities with him when he was here, which I found to be both a joy and an honor.