ISRAELI AMERICAN LEADERSHIP

VERED COHEN BARZILAY

Founder Director 
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Vered Cohen-Barzilay is an Israeli-born entrepreneur and tenacious advocate for aviation, space, and science education. Founder Director of "Out of the Box".  Writer, publicist, human rights defender, and advocate for gender equality. 

Cohen-Barzilay is one of only 35 women worldwide to be selected by the United Nations as a mentor for its Space4Women program. In 2012 she won the Global Women in Leadership award  (GCPIT)

in 2021 she was elected to the 1000+ space tech leaders list, published by Space tech analytics. She currently serves as a mentor at Starburst IAI space accelerator.

 
In 2020, Cohen-Barzilay, elected by the US department of state as the #FacesofExchange initiative, highlighted 80 accomplished alumni, their lives, and the impact their exchange program brought to the global community.


Cohen-Barzilay is the founder and former director of Israel’s Women’s Media Center Israel, a hub for gender equality and social justice. She co-led the steering committee for Israeli NAP-UN Resolution 1325 and is co-founder of the Chamber of Women Journalists - chosen 5th of the 100 most influential people in Israeli media for 2014.


Cohen-Barzilay was often invited to appear at hearings of government committees dealing with gender. She speaks at organizations and events around the globe to advance space education, space entrepreneurship, and innovation ( e.g UNOOSA Space4women conference, February 2021, SEEC - Houston Space Educational conference, January 2021) the XXXth General Assembly of the International Astronomical Union Vienna, August 20-31, 2017). she is also a professional moderator. 

 
Cohen-Barzilay is also a Human Rights advocate, she was a board member for Art for Amnesty, a global project which encourages artists of all disciplines to become involved in the effort to raise awareness for human rights issues.  Art for Amnesty members (U2, YOKO ONO, etc) lends their voices to Amnesty International campaigns.

 

At the age of 45, Cohen Barzilay started to pursue her piloting license. Her life motto is: Dare to dream, as she believes there is no age to fulfill dreams and that even the sky isn't the limit...

PROFESSIONAL ADVISORS

Winners Announcement

Dr. JACOB COHEN  

Chief Scientist
NASA Ames Research Center 

Dr. Jacob Cohen is currently the Chief Scientist at NASA Ames Research Center.

In this capacity, Dr. Cohen provides advice and oversight for research programs and serves as the principal Center advisor in the administration of long term, high risk, and creative/inventive research programs.

Dr. Cohen evaluates proposals for new programs, keeps abreast of ongoing work, and establishes priorities to assure that Center research programs contribute effectively to national aerospace and scientific objectives.

Dr. Cohen serves as the chief advisor to the Center Director on all areas affecting the science at the Center. As part of his interest in the utilization of space and aeronautics for scientific and technology advancements, Dr. Cohen facilitates and develops international, inter agency, academic and commercial collaborations to sustain new research initiatives.

Dr. Cohen serves as the Center representative to the Agency Chief Scientist and the NASA Research Council and is the conduit for the Agency Office of the Chief Scientist at the Center.

Dr. Cohen received his Doctorate from New York University in the area of molecular evolution. He then completed a postdoctoral fellowship at Cedars-Sinai Medical Center’s Ophthalmology Research Laboratories in the area of viral host relationships. Dr. Cohen has held various research and management positions. Dr. Cohen has received various NASA and external awards and honors. Mentoring, teaching and inspiring the next generation of scientists and managers are continuous roles Dr. Cohen pursues.

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Mr. SHMULIK BARZILAY

VP Business Development  

Mr. Shmulik Barzilay holds a senior position in the worldwide photonics industry, experienced Executive in Sales Management and Business Development with proven track record in Lasers, sensors, Photonics, Optronics, semiconductors, Metrology and Electro-Optics. Working for lasers instrumentation manufacturers worldwide in the fields of defense, medical, industry, and space.


Mr. Barzilay Holds M.Sc Physics/Geophysics & Planetary Sciences education from Tel Aviv University, and international business negotiations certification from Cambridge University, UK. In conducted researches for the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA).

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Dr. DIANA LAUFER 

Astronomy & Planetary

Dr. Diana Laufer is the Scientific Director of Givatayim Observatory in Israel, leading education and public astronomy and space education programs.

 

Dr. Laufer received her Ph.D. from Tel Aviv University in planetary sciences, as a specialist in cometary ices and icy bodies in the solar system. Laufer worked, till last year, as the head of the cometary ice lab at Tel Aviv University, lecturer and Ph.D. research mentor, currently working in a new nanosatellite project.

 

The most known research project was on Comet 67P/Churyumov–Gerasimenko by the Rosetta mission and member of the Rosetta team scientists. Other research projects focused on cometary activity, icy moons, Mars ices, and Titan’s atmospheric aerosols simulation as a part of Cassini-Huygens space project. In addition to the scientific activity,

 

Dr. Laufer is involved in many educational projects of the Ministry of Science and was a board member of the Ilan Ramon’s Science Olympiad for Junior High School Students of the Department of Science Teaching at the Weizmann Institute and MSc mentor at the Rothschild - Weizmann Program for teachers.

Dr. Diana Laufer is a member of the Israeli Astronomical Association (IAA) and the International Astronomical Union.

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Dr. ROY YANIV

Atmosphere and Satellite 

Roy Yaniv, PhD, is a specialist in the fields of atmospheric and planetary sciences.

 

Dr. Yaniv specialized in Atmospheric physics, remote sensing, and Space weather. Roy's main focus is using airborne remote sensing platforms and ground measurements to understand variabilities in atmospheric and space weather parameters. Dr. Yaniv received his Ph.D. from the School of Geosciences, Tel Aviv University, and finished postdoctoral studies at the R&D center in Ariel University. 

 

In addition, Dr. Yanivis is actively involved in science education with a special focus on space and planetary sciences. Dr. Yaniv and works as a physics teacher at highschool for the past 7 years. Furthermore, he is working with the educational science center in Weizmman institute of science.

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Dr. Reut Sorek-Abramovich

ASTROBIOLOGY AND SPACE MISSIONS SPECIALIST 

Dr. Sorek Abramovich is currently an astrobiologist at The Dead Sea-Arava Science Center. Topics of research in astrobiology: Extremophile adaptations and cross contamination challenges in future planetary exploration. Graduate of Microbial Diversity Course, at MBL Woods Hole (2013), MA.

Head of science education at the Young Astronaut Academy Program, Co-founder and current chairperson of the Israeli Mars Society, former director of the NSW chapter in the Mars Society Australia (2009-2013). Participant in NASA’s Spaceward Bound Field Expedition in South Australia (2009). Former Chief Scientist and Co-founder of D-MARS (Desert Mars Analog Ramon Station), analog astronaut, public speaker. An International Space University core lecturer for the Space Studies Program on Astrobiology.

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Dr. Miri Ben Amram

Evaluation and Statistics

Dr. Ben Amram conducts the evaluation process of Out of the Box programs.
She received her  Ph.D. from Bar Ilan University, Management and Leadership of Educational Systems in Schools of education.  She is the Head of induction year unit. Management of graduate degree. professionals Teaching discipline, Pedagogical instructor of  Mathematics, Lecturer, Managing internship workshops for teacher  interns.

 

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Dana Grinberg 

Aviation and Airline Specialist  

 EL-AL ISRAELI AIRLINES First Officer on Boeing 737/767/777
Master of Science in Management, specialization in Aviation/Aerospace Industrial Management, Embry Riddle Aeronautical University.
Bachelor of Professional Aeronautics with an Aviation Safety Minor degree, Embry Riddle Aeronautical University.
Professional Pilot Program Course, Phoenix East Aviation.