London-based UJIA has appointed Mandie Winston to be its new CEO. Winston is the first woman to hold this high profile communal role. She joins UJIA with more than two decades of programme and management experience strengthening Jewish communities, vulnerable populations around the world, and building ties to Israel and Israeli innovations for humanitarian ends. She is currently a member of the senior professional leadership team of JDC, where she serves as Executive Director of its disaster response and international development arm.
The appointment follows an extensive, global search for a candidate who shares UJIA’s vision to lead the organisation into its centenary year. UJIA Israel Director, Natie Shevel, who has been working as the acting CEO since February this year, will resume his role in Israel, for which he was previously awarded an MBE.
Mandie, who grew up in London and was deeply involved in the community’s Jewish and Israel-focused institutions, was a Mazkira of Liberal Judaism’s Zionist youth movement (now known as LJY-Netzer), a graduate of the Machon programme and, after making Aliya, an educator on gap year programmes for British Jews. At JDC, she took this formative experience and leveraged it to build community development and humanitarian interventions aiding Jewish and non-Jewish people in need, Jewish communities renewing after Communism, and connecting Israel and Israeli social welfare models to these populations.
Among her key accomplishments, she led flagship emergency response and disaster recovery programs in Haiti, the Philippines and Nepal and was critical to aid efforts for Syrian refugees. She played a significant role in the launch of a new cutting-edge international development initiative which addresses poverty among farmers in Africa through access to Israeli agricultural technology and Jewish philanthropy. Mandie also served as JDC’s regional director for Africa and Asia; country director for India; represented JDC’s multi-year efforts in Sri Lanka following the Indian Ocean Tsunami; and was deputy director of JDC Moscow and Central Russia where she helped build emerging Jewish life, external relations efforts and founded women’s health programs. Mandie holds a BA from UCL and an MSc from the New School in international relations.
Winston will be relocating to the UK from Israel in January 2020.