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Executive Board

Executive Board of the Israel Trauma Coalition


Leadership is Key-The Israel Trauma Coalition is fortunate to benefit from the wisdom and experience of Israel’s leading psycho-trauma professionals on its Coordinating Board.

The following individuals give generously of their time and expertise to advance the causes of healing and resilience, amongst a population exposed to perennial sources of trauma on personal, communal and national levels.


Martin Auerbach, Clinical Director, Amcha – Israel Center for Psychosocial Support of Survivors of the Holocaust and the Second Generation


Martin Auerbach, M.D., is a psychiatrist and psychotherapist. He worked for many years in leading positions in community mental health centers in Jerusalem. His professional interests are in trauma therapy, anxiety disorders, different modalities of psychotherapy, and development and provision of community mental health care. Since 1993, Martin has been a psychiatric consultant for AMCHA Jerusalem. In 2007 he became the National Clinical Director of AMCHA.


 Ruth Bar-On, Director, Selah – Israel Crisis Management Center (ICMC)


Ruth Bar-On was born and raised in Tel Aviv. She was active for many years in the world struggle for Soviet Jewry and worked closely with Prisoners of Zion. After serving as the executive Director of the Israel Public Council for Soviet Jewry, in 1993 she established SELAH- the Israel Crisis Management Center. SELAH serves a country-wide address for new immigrants hit by crisis, terror or another life-altering tragedy.



 Dr. Fortu Benarroch, Clinical Director, Center for Post-traumatic Stress, Hadassah University Hospital, Jerusalem


Dr. Fortu Benarroch is a senior child and adolescent psychiatrist. He currently holds the position as clinical Director of the Center for Pediatric Post Traumatic Stress, Hadassah - Hebrew University Medical Center, Jerusalem. Dr. Benarroch has extensive teaching experience including teaching trainees in pediatric clinical psychology, training social workers in crisis intervention and family practitioners in the detection and treatment of pediatric post traumatic stress. He is a member of the Israel Trauma Coalition (ITC) Board and as part of an ITC project Dr. Fortu Benarroch has trained emergency room staff in immediate intervention principles for children following traumatic events and has trained clinicians both in Israel and abroad in the comprehensive psychological treatment of children, adolescents and their families in zones affected by war and terrorism.


Cheryl Fishbein, Public representative


 Orly Gal, Director, Natal – Israel Trauma Center for Victims of Terror and War


Colonel (Res.) Orly Gal, the Executive Director of NATAL joined the organization after a prestigious 25-year career in the IDF. Her last position was Deputy IDF Spokesperson -responsible for the entire Public Relations Department and commander to over 1,000 soldiers. In 2005 Orly represented the Army in the Prime Minister's Office, as a member of the Coordination and Strategy Team, which initiated and developed the information campaign for the disengagement plan in Gaza. She also served as Secretary to the High Command.Additionally, Orly was a Jewish Agency emissary in Columbus, Ohio and in England, and has a Masters Degree in Public Policy. Since joining NATAL in March 2006, Orly successfully led the organization through the Second Lebanon War, the crisis in Sderot and Operation Cast Lead. As a result of her extensive PR experience she has helped to significantly increase NATAL's presence in the national and international media.


 David Koren, CEO, ERAN – Emergency Hotline for Emotional First Aid


David Koren is the CEO of ERAN –Emergency Hotline for emotional First Aid. Before entering this post, he served as the Director of several NGOs, including the Center for Rights of Pensioners and Holocaust Survivors and the National Kibbutz Movement amongst others. Mr. Koren has a long trajectory in the non-profit sector, having served as board member of several NGOs and as a Member of the Presidium and the Board of the Non-profit Sector and Non-profit Associations in Israel. Mr. Koren has a B.A. in Social Work from Haifa University and has attended educational programs in group facilitation and organizational consulting, computer, marketing and management, and mediation and crisis management.



 Prof. Mooli Lahad, President, Community Stress Prevention Center (CSPC)

Prof. Mooli Lahad is a senior medical and educational psychologist who holds the position of Professor of Drama Therapy and Psychology at Tel Hai College, Israel and Roehampton University, United Kingdom. Prof. Lahad is considered one of the world's leading experts on community and public behavior. Currently, Prof. Lahad is the president of the Community Stress Prevention Center (CSPC), an NGO which he established 30 years ago. CSPC is both a training center and an academic institute where models and methods of intervention in mass disasters are developed and tested in the field.


 Talia Levanon, Director, Israel Trauma Coalition


Levanon was born in Switzerland and raised in Nigeria. Talia has an MSW in clinical social work from Bar Ilan University together with degrees in Integrative psychotherapy and a BSW in Social Work from Hebrew University. During the Yom Kippur War in 1973, Talia served as an officer in the Israeli army, working with bereaved families and wounded soldiers. Talia is a supervisor for social workers. She has worked in private practice as well as in a Unit in the Jerusalem Branch of the Israeli National Insurance Institute for Treatment and Rehabilitation of Trauma Widows and Widowers. Currently, Talia Levanon is the Director of the Israel Trauma Coalition (ITC) established in 2001. A collaborative network of over forty organizations committed to a proactive role in policy making and the provision of a systematic continuum of trauma related care and preparedness. As Director of the ITC, Talia is working towards building collaborative partnerships that ensure the provision of lasting care and healing to traum victims in both Israel and abroad. Talia is fluent in English, French, and Hebrew.


Menachem Revivi, MA, public representative


Menachem Revivi received his BA in psychology and sociology from Bar-Ilan University and his master's degree in educational psychology from New York University. For the past thirty years, Mr. Revivi has been a leader in Israeli and Jewish Communal affairs and is recognized for his expertise in the areas of Jewish education and Israel-Diaspora relations. He served as the director of the North American region of the Jewish Agency and as the education delegate to North America. Before his shlichut as director in New York, Mr. Revivi founded the United Israel Office of the UJC and worked for eight years as its first director. Mr. Revivi also held senior positions at the American Jewish Joint Distribution Committee (JDC) and the World Confederation of Jewish Community Centers (WCJCC).


 Miriam Shapira, Director, Mahut – Center for the Development of Coping Skills


Miriam Shapira is a clinical psychologist, )M.A. Bar Ilan University) group facilitator and consultant to educational and community agencies. She holds the position of Director of the Center for Coping in Emergency (Mahut). Miriam is a Member of Besod Siach (Open Discussion Groups, professional consultation and facilitation) and first chairperson and member of Ofek (The Israel Association for the Study of Group and Organizational Processes).




 Major General Gideon Sheffer, President of the Israel Trauma Coalition


Sheffer was born in 1948 in Poland. He served 32 years in the Israel Air Force (IAF), enlisting in 1966 as an electronic technician and retiring in 1998 as a Major General. As an IAF pilot he flew all fighter aircraft, including attack helicopters, in the IAF Fleet. From 1995 until his retirement in 1998, he served as a Major General on the Israel Defense Force (IDF) General Staff as Head of the Manpower Division. Following his retirement from the IDF, Mr. Sheffer served as Deputy Israeli National Security Advisor and a member of the team that established the Israel National Security Council. Gideon Sheffer joined Elbit Systems, Ltd. in 2001, and in August 2009 was appointed as Executive Vice President - Strategic Planning and Business Development - Israel. Mr. Sheffer holds a Bachelor's Degree (with distinction) in Israel Studies from Bar Ilan University and is a graduate of Harvard University's Advanced Management Program. He serves as a member of the Board of Directors of a number of Israeli corporations and organizations and is actively involved in various Mid-East peace initiatives. Mr. Sheffer is married to Shosh. They have four children and five grandchildren.


Yehuda Toonik, adv., public representative


Yehuda Toonik, is a senior faculty member in the law department of Tel Aviv University, and between the years of 1970-1978 he participated in security matters related to the Prime Minister’s Office. Mr. Tooknik has worked in private practice since 1978. He has held various positions including Chairman of the National Mediation Institute of the Israeli Bar Association, Chairman of theCapital Markets Committee of the Israeli Bar Association, member of the licensing, certification, and legislation of the Institute of Internal Auditors and has held various positions in commercial companies. He has also served as the Chairman of the Israel Bar Association.


Dr. Moshe Vardi, Psychiatrist, Loewenstein Hospital and Rehabilitation Center


Dr. Moshe Vardi is the Director of Psychiatric Services in Beit Loewenstein Hospital and Rehabilitation Center, the largest rehabilitation center in Israel, and the Director of the Post Trauma Unit for Child victims of Accident and Terror. He specialized both in general psychiatry and in children and adolescents. At Beit Loewenstein, his main interest and work is in the field of Traumatic Brain Injury Rehabilitation, Neuropsychiatry, Trauma and Post Trauma, in children and adults.

All member organizations of the Israel Trauma Coalition are eligible to be represented on the ITC Board of Directors.

ITC invites Trauma professionals and lay leaders to contact the ITC office for more information.


Our Mission

The mission of the Israel Trauma Coalition (ITC) is to create a continuum of care in the trauma field, response and preparedness, by leveraging diverse resources to initiate, prioritize, and optimize services.

In the past 13 years  the ITC has proven its effectiveness in partnering with over 60 organizations including government ministries and Home Front Command to ensure a comprehensive view of the trauma field, timely delivery of needed services, resilience building at a personal, community and national level and influencing policy.