• Ilan Wagner was born in New Jersey and moved to Israel in 1986 after years of activity in the Young Judaea youth movement. Upon arriving in Israel, he helped found the Keren Kolot Educational Seminar at Kibbutz Ketura, wrote a text book for teaching English at the high school level, and then went on to be the head of the Education Committee on Kibbutz Yotvata, and supervisor of Civics at the regional high school. In 1996, he worked as an emissary  for college students in North America on behalf of Hadassah. From 2002 until 2004 he directed the Jewish Agency Department of Education's global student activities, and then returned to the United Sates as the Jewish Agency's representative to Hillel and Student Affairs in North America. Beginning in August, 2007 he served as the director of the Jewish Agency's educational efforts in North America and directed MAKOM, the Israel Engagement Network in North America. Ilan returned to Israel in 2009, continuing his work as the Director of the Jewish Agency's North American regional office. He currently directs Onward Israel and serves as the Director of Content and Programing in newly created Unit for Israel Experiences.  Ilan lives In Modiin with his wife Shoshi and two children, Amit and Adi, and their beloved dog, Eddie. If you meet Ilan, be sure to say a kind word about the Boston Red Sox. 

  • Ilan is the Educational Director for Onward Israel. As part of his role, Ilan is continuing to evolve the educational platform of Onward, whilst developing new content, training methods and materials, supporting the local organizers, and running educational seminars and retreats for the groups during the program. Previously, Ilan managed several educational projects for Masa and worked for the Israel Teaching Fellows program for a number of years. Prior to this he trained in London UK, specializing in adult education, where he worked in the field until relocating to Israel in 2010. Shortly after, Ilan helped to found an independent evening school in Tel Aviv that provides skills training, language tuition and support for immigrants from various backgrounds. After standing down as pedagogical director to come and work for Onward, he continues to provide consultancy. Ilan recently finished an MA in Immigration and Social Integration, and currently lives in Tel Aviv. 
  • Liad coordinates  Onward Israel’s operations in Israel. Together with the educational director,  she focuses on building content infrastructure, supporting the implementation of direct Onward Israel programming, and developing the enrichment program for the participants. In addition, she takes the lead on quality control interactions with program organizers. Previously, Liad has worked in the Priority Regions Division and the Scholarships Unit of The Jewish Agency. She has a MA in Educational Management and Policy from the Hebrew University in Jerusalem, and a BA in International Relations, Sociology and Anthropology. Liad is married to Yaniv and a mother to Eithan and Nevo and lives in a Moshav near Jerusalem.
  • Jessica works as the North American coordinator for the Unit of Educational Experiences at the Jewish Agency for Israel, primarily working with partners on marketing, recruitment, and screening for Onward Israel.  Born and raised in New Jersey, Jessica currently lives in New York City.  She received a B.A. in International Relations from Boston University, spending two semesters studying abroad in both London, England and Haifa, Israel as part of her coursework and later a Masters in Public Administration with a focus on Nonprofit Administration from Baruch College of the City of New York.  Jessica worked at the Jewish National Fund in the Israel Advocacy and Education department and later as an events manager with the Greater NY fundraising team.  While at JNF, she had the opportunity to staff several incredible Birthright trips and also participated as a Germany Close Up Fellow.  She is excited to work with the Onward Israel team to bring college students and young professionals on immersive experiences in Israel.