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“For my children and their generation, to whom we are committed to do all we can to build an exemplary society in which they would want to live and of which they would be proud.”

“The goal is change, and I believe wholeheartedly that it can be achieved.”

Yossi Bachar, 1955 – 2020


The Yossi Bachar Fellowship for Leading Systemic Change in Israeli Society via JDC – Elka was established by JDC – Elka, the Bachar family, and partnering philanthropists from Israel and throughout the world to reflect the spirit and legacy of Dr. Yossi Bachar z”l. The initiative harnesses the experience, knowledge, and abilities of Israel’s senior leadership to help advance discourse and reciprocity between the public and social systems, focusing on initiatives that will improve life in Israel for disadvantaged populations.

The fellowship aims to promote change at the level of government policy that will impact on the quality of life of each and every person living in Israel. Dr. Yossi Bachar strove tirelessly to harness leaders of Israel’s business and public sectors to promote dialogue with the social sector and generate engines for policy change. He believed that only by combining the forces of the three sectors (public, social, and business) could successful resolution of Israel’s complex social issues be achieved.

The prestigious Yossi Bachar Fellowship will be granted annually to an outstanding senior figure who has successfully headed widespread change and impacted on the public, social, and /or business sectors. The Fellowship will enable visionary men and women to bring about real change in Israeli society.

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JDC – Elka

  • JDC – Elka reinforces the public systems’ ability to provide high quality services to Israeli citizens

  • JDC – Elka heads inter-ministerial and inter-sectorial task forces

  • JDC – Elka untangles complexities within the public systems whilst re-establishes processes to resolve challenges

JDC – Elka strives to strengthen the public systems’ ability to efficiently and beneficially provide Israeli citizens with social services.

  • Better systems
  • Better services
  • Better lives

JDC – Elka is an ideal infrastructure for Fellowship recipients.

Dr. Yossi Bachar 1955 – 2020


In the 1980’s Yossi Bachar received an MA, cum laude, in Economics and Accounting from the Hebrew University in Jerusalem. After acquiring a Ph.D. in Business Administration from the University of California, Berkley, specializing in Funding, he served as a lecturer at Columbia University Business School in New York (1986 – 1991).

As CEO of the Ministry of Finance (2003 – 2007) he headed the Bachar Committee which generated a change in the structure of the Israeli capital market to provide better quality of services. The impact of this reform is felt by Israeli citizens to this day.

In 2007, while serving as Chair of Haifa University’s Executive Committee, Yossi received the Knight of Quality Government award from the Movement for Quality Government in Israel for his unique contribution to advancing the Israeli market and Israeli society and improving the quality of public administration. In 2010 he was appointed Chair of Discount Bank, in which capacity he also served as Chair of Mercantile Discount Bank, and Chair of Israel Credit Cards (until 2018). He was then appointed Chair of the Haifa Group (Haifa Chemicals) (2019 – 2020).

From 2014 to 2020, Yossi Bachar held the role of Co-Chair of JDC – Elka’s Advisory Committee. During these years he helped formulate JDC – Elka’s organizational strategy for the benefit of public and social systems, in parallel to forging collaborations between the public, social, and business sectors – collaborations he was highly skilled at creating. He established a committee comprised of senior government representatives, international philanthropists, representatives of Jewish communities around the world, and Israeli representatives.

During his term, Yossi strove to promote a world view that placed involvement in the public sector at the heart of business activity in order to increase the effectiveness of the public system, and emphasized the business sector’s need to engage in social action.

In addition to formulating policies and reforms, a central part of Yossi’s social approach was expressed through one-on-one meetings in which he provided advice and mentoring to men and women who went on to become key players in his spheres of involvement.

Thanks to his charismatic and inspiring personality, Yossi was able to engage a broad circle of colleagues and friends in social action.

During Yossi’s years of activity, JDC – Elka promoted a variety of programs on the national level.

These included:

  • Promoting policies with a regional approach (the Regional Clusters) and decentralizing national government, whilst establishing mechanisms to realize government budgets in local authorities
  • Involvement in myriad government decisions targeting social issues, such as promoting and supporting the government decision for the benefit of East Jerusalem residents and supporting the five-year plan for the Bedouin and Arab sectors
  • Running focused leadership programs to improve the public system in fields such as finance, digitalization, and procurement
  • Promoting a select team of social directors to integrate the business sector into the executive boards of social organizations
  • Launching long-term infrastructures to promote collaboration, training, and networking of senior public leaders of all sectors, while founding spheres and mechanisms for joint action

“The goal is change, and I believe wholeheartedly that it can be achieved.”

Dr. Yossi Bachar’s career was marked by diverse and extensive action, including senior roles in the public and business sectors. Yossi set an example of striving for excellence and achieving goals in every field he was active in while exhibiting accountability, wisdom, commitment, and honest compassion.

During Dr. Yossi Bachar’s term as Co-Chair of JDC – Elka’s Advisory Committee (2014 – 2020) he headed a process which resulted in changing JDC – Elka’s vision from developing leadership as a goal to developing leadership as a means to generate systemic change.

Dr. Yossi Bachar passed away in December 2020 at the age of 65, after battling cancer for years. He is survived by his wife Orit, four children, and grandchildren.

Fellowship components

Philanthropic Partners

Steering Committee

Senior accompaniment by JDC-Elka CEO

International networking

Bachar Family

Bachar Fellow

Joint Elka – Professional team

Joint-Elka infrastructure

“Yossi’s Bus” Club

Entrepreneur in Residence Fellowship of 100K$

Research assistants

רשתות הג’וינט

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The Steering Committee

  • Selecting a Bachar Fellow

  • Supporting the Fellow in drawing up an annual work plan, defining the products, and actual implementation

  • Monitoring achievement of the required products

  • Recruiting partners

  • The Committee will be aided by a forum of senior professionals tailored to the selected Fellow

orit bachar

Orit Bachar

Steering Committee Honorary President

Committee members:

Rani Dudai

Rani Dudai joined JDC-Israel in 2011 as director of the civil society field and of the Center for Lay Leadership. In 2014 he was appointed CEO of JDC – Elka, in which role he headed a significant change in JDC – Elka’s work approach – from a center of training, management, and leadership to partnering with the Israeli government in everything relating to promoting the efficiency of Israel’s public systems.

Rani holds an MBA from Haifa University, specializing in strategic personnel management; an MA in social work from Bar Ilan University, specializing in clinical work; and a BA in social work from Tel Aviv University. He has also completed several leadership programs for senior directors at Harvard Business School.

For over a decade Rani served as CEO of the Gevim Group, which offers consulting services to directors in the fields of mediation, constructing agreements, and negotiation. He is among the founders and entrepreneurs of the Kedem Association for Children and Youth in Israel, which is active in the field of healing justice. Currently he serves as a board member of the Ruppin Academic Center.

In April 2021 he was appointed CEO of JDC – Tevet.

Rani Dudai

Committee Chair

Ori Gil

Ori joined the JDC in 2013, holding several positions within the organization. From 2018 to 2020 he served as Deputy Director General of JDC – Elka and Director of Cross-Sectorial Collaboration. In this role he initiated and headed varied collaborations with the government and civil society to bolster their ability to work together, promote agents of change networks, head processes of innovation in the public sphere, and more. In April 2021 he was appointed Director General of JDC – Elka.

Before joining JDC – Elka Ori served as a strategic consultant for the BDO Group, working with a range of companies in the public and private sectors. Ori holds an MBA from Ben Gurion University of the Negev’s Honors Program, and a BA in philosophy from the Hebrew University in Jerusalem (both cum laude). He served as a combat pilot in the Israel Air Force and serves as a flight instructor in reserves.

Ori Gil

CEO of JDC – Elka

Dana Snierson (Bachar)

Dana Snierson (Bachar)

Representing the Bachar family, Dana is the eldest of Yossi z”l and Orit’s four children, and the mother of three.

Dana designs processes and services and is an expert in developing and implementing design thinking and heading co-creation processes for leading organizations in the three sectors (public, business, and social).

In the Bachar household there were constant conversations regarding the importance of realizing personal potential while harnessing one’s abilities to significantly contribute to society. These values have guided Dana throughout her life and molded her professional outlook. Dana is deeply familiar with the public and social sectors, proficient at forging cross-sector collaborations, and has much experience in working with JDC – Israel, especially JDC – Elka. Dana currently heads the field of Client Experience and User Experience at Deloitte Digital. Previously she directed the public sector unit and headed activities in the social sector at EY Israel.

Dana Snierson (Bachar)

Raanan Dinur

Raanan Dinur

Raanan Dinur was born in Jerusalem in 1952. After 13 years of service in the IDF he was appointed CEO of Telad and director of development at Audionautics. In the late 1980s he was among the founders of Young Entrepreneurs at the Van Leer Institute (the Karev Program) for educational enrichment. In the 1990s he served as Director General of the Jerusalem municipality. In 2003 he was appointed Director General of the Ministry of Industry, Trade and Labor, where he established the Tevet employment program in collaboration with JDC – Israel, and the Mehalev Program (also known as the Wisconsin Plan).

In 2006 he was appointed Director General of the Prime Minister’s Office (PMO), a role he held for three years under Prime Minister Ehud Olmert. In this role he worked to strengthen the PMO’s abilities and was a partner to establishing the National Economic Council, integrating the National Security Council into the PMO, establishing the Policy Planning Division, the tri-sectorial roundtable, and the Authority for the Economic Development of the Minority Sectors.

Dinur laid the groundwork for the government planning guide and determined the way in which ministries were required to plan and report.

Raanan holds an MA in Public Administration and Policy, and as of 2012 he serves as Chair of the Ruppin Academic Center’s Board of Directors. Currently he divides his time between the business sector – in the Taavura Group and Pilat Group (Chair) – and volunteer activities as a social entrepreneur at the Wexner Foundation, the Mandel Institute for Educational Leadership, the Jerusalem Institute for Policy Research, and more.

Raanan Dinur

Shawqi Khatib

Shawqi Khatib

Since 2018 Shawqi Khatib has served as president of the Injaz Center (a professional center for the advancement of local Arab authorities). He has also served as a board member of the Mercantile Discount Bank Ltd.; and between 2012 and 2020 served as Chair of the Alfanar Center – a national program established by the JDC and Yad Hanadiv to implement government programs promoting employment among Israel’s Arab population.

Khativ was appointed Chair of the National Committee for Mayors of Arab Municipalities and Chair of the High Follow-Up Committee for Arab Citizens of Israel in 2001, positions he held until 2008. Between 2009 and 2014 he was responsible for realizing Stef Wertheimer’s vision of his seventh industrial park, the Nazareth Industrial Park. Khativ served as mayor of the Yafa an-Naseriyye local authority between 1990 and 2008.

Shawqi Khatib

Products and goals of the Fellowship term:

  • Networking: a tri-sector network of relationships to help promote change and create collaborations with relevant entities, such as government ministries, the Knesset, voluntary organizations, and promote necessary legislative change
  • Connection to JDC – Elka: generating an infrastructure for continued promotion of change as part of JDC – Elka’s fields of activity
  • Drawing up the change theory, including a policy paper presenting the method of change actualization, together with the legislative adaptions required
  • Striving for actual implementation of the policy paper
  • Long-term guidance in creating an infrastructure for continued promotion of the change and structuring a mechanism to examine the effectiveness of the recommendations after implementation
  • Constructing a knowledge center to head reforms
  • Leading a team of students and scholars

Resources at the Fellow’s disposal:

  • A living stipend during the Fellowship period and a designated budget for consultations, research, and publications
  • Assistance in harnessing partners among leaders in government, civil society, and the private sector through JDC – Elka networks, and comprehensive support to promote action
  • An international research trip to develop international and academic networking in the Fellow’s field of expertise and to foster familiarity with Jewish communities worldwide
  • Research assistants who will accompany the Fellow throughout the scholarship period (students from Israel’s social and geographic periphery)
  • Professional and administrative support provided by JDC – Elka
  • Personal mentorship by the Chair and members of JDC – Elka’s Advisory Committee, JDC – Elka’s CEO, and the CEO of a leading business firm
  • Support from Yossi’s Bus

Mordechai Cohen, 2022 Bachar Fellow


Mordechai Cohen was born and educated in Hatzor HaGlilit, where he studied at the Hatzor Yeshiva High School founded by the religious Mizrahi Tami movement. He completed his high school studies at the Bezeq boarding school in Jerusalem, after which he enlisted to the IDF’s Nahal Brigade and served as a combat medic. Mordechai holds BA and MA degrees in Political Science from the Hebrew University in Jerusalem, as well as an MBA from the University of Manchester.

His social activities began with a program for public activists at the Hebrew University and in the Social Justice Student Cell. In parallel to his studies, Mordechai was a counselor at the Mesilla Institute – a secure care institution for young women at-risk.

In 1999 he enrolled at the Mandel Institute for Leadership in Jerusalem, focusing on an in-depth study of models for decentralization and creating regional education administrations in Israel and around the world. After graduating from the Institute he joined the Tipul Nekudati (Direct Focus) initiative managed by the Prime Minister’s Office. The initiative focused on formulating and implementing comprehensive master plans for several local authorities in the geographical and social periphery. Mordechai coordinated the project’s activities at local authorities in the north.

Shortly afterwards Mordechai joined the Rashi Foundation, serving for nine years as director of the Northern Region and then Vice President of the Foundation. In this role he headed an extensive array of solutions for the benefit of local authorities in the north, especially after the crisis they experienced following the Second Lebanon War. This crisis was the result of severe underperformance on their part and the part of various government bodies. Mordechai headed the plan to reinforce the north in partnership with the government and the third sector, and as a result youth centers, early childhood centers, and warm homes for girls at risk were established, as well as the new Tel-Hai campus, Merom Galil campus, and libraries at Jordan Valley and Tel-Hai Colleges. Programs have also been implemented to streamline and improve local authority management in routine and emergency situations, students were awarded scholarships, and research laboratory centers were developed for students. In 2012, after completing his term at the Rashi Foundation, he was appointed Director of Local Government Administration at the Ministry of the Interior.

At the Rashi Foundation Mordechai spearheaded a series of groundbreaking steps, including establishing and expanding an administrative reserve for local government – local government cadets; establishing regional clusters together with JDC – Elka; transitioning from uniform to differential regulation; and integrating programs for economic development and for enriching the existing human capital in local authorities.

After his appointment as Director-General of the Ministry of the Interior in 2017 Mordechai led a comprehensive organizational change within the Ministry. As a result, the Ministry led the reform of the geographical committees, continued to establish the clusters, and headed the transition from economic recovery programs to financial success. He also reduced the number of local authorities acting through an appointed committee and significantly increased the Ministry of Interior’s budget for weakened authorities.

In parallel, in 2020 and 2021 Mordechai served as Chair of the National Planning and Building Council and Chair of the National Infrastructure Committee. In these roles, too, he sought a careful balance between conserving natural resources and the need to develop infrastructure with an emphasis on a regional view and reducing the gaps between the periphery and the center.

Mordechai has been appointed Chair of a task force to promote the reform promoting regionalism and decentralization of powers to local government. Among the members of the team were the late Dr. Yossi Bachar, who served on the team in his role as Chair of the JDC – Elka Advisory Committee, and other experts in the fields of academia, law, and economics.

Throughout his professional and public career, Mordechai Cohen has been guided by a cohesive socio-economic vision. Its main goal was and still is to bolster Israeli statehood, reduce social gaps in Israeli society, reinforce democracy and social mobility, and improve the functioning of public systems for the population’s benefit.

In his role as Director General of the Ministry of the Interior, Mordechai was appointed Chair of a task force promoting regional reform and decentralizing powers to local government. The late Dr. Yossi Bachar served on this team in his role as Chair of JDC – Elka’s Advisory Committee.

After a complex selection process, the Steering Committee chose Mordechai Cohen as the first Bachar Scholarship Fellow to promote systemic change and fulfill his vision regarding the decentralization of local authority in Israel to improve the quality of life for all Israelis.

Scholarship Theme for 2022

The Cohen-Bachar report presented recommendations for a reform to promote regionalism and decentralization of power from the central government to local and regional government (November 2020). Following the report, in the past six months the Minister of the Interior and the Prime Minister headed a government decision (Resolution 675), in collaboration with JDC ELKA, to decentralize powers from the central government to the local one, the implementation of which has begun these days.

Decentralization is central to the functioning of the government and local authorities in Israel, which is why we have decided the scholarship should focus on this topic.

The decision created a significant opportunity to influence the direction of the decentralization on the one hand, and to reflect challenges and dangers while learning from the experience of other countries on the other hand. Decentralization is a broad systemic move that affects the daily life of Israeli citizens, hence its great importance.

Yossi’s Bus

In a creative and unusual act, Dr. Yossi Bachar initiated ‘Yossi’s Bus tours’. From time to time he would invite leading businessmen, public officials, and friends to join him on a tour of cities throughout the country to expose them, first hand, to the realities of life in the social periphery.
Yossi used to say to his guests: “I cannot believe that people like you and me, who were born in Israel, have never visited Sderot, Yeruham, or even Akko.”

At the joint initiative of JDC – Elka and the Bachar family, it was decided to commemorate and continue this important work by establishing the Yossi Bachar Fellowship and revive Yossi’s Bus encounters. Passengers on the bus can play a significant role in promoting initiatives and assisting in the Fellows’ success through their professional, personal, and financial abilities, in accordance with their personal preferences.

Yossi’s Bus will hold regular activities throughout the year as part of a supportive envelope for the Fellows. Over the years, the club will grow and increase its human capital in order to cope successfully with the significant challenges that lie ahead.

“I truly believe that integrating volunteer work in our regular business activities is both an obligation and a privilege.”
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