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Minister of Aliyah and Integration Pnina Tameno Shete was the keynote speaker at B’nai B’rith World Center-Jerusalem Award for Journalism Recognizing Excellence in Diaspora Reportage in Memory of Wolf and Hilda Matsdorf for 2020 on Nov. 25.

The ceremony took place at the Menachem Begin Heritage Center in Jerusalem. Due to COVID-19 regulations the ceremony was held with a limited participation and streamed live on varioussocial media platforms.

Winners for 2020 are: Branu Tegene and Danny Kushmaro of Channel 12 News and former Haaretz correspondent Dina Kraft. Tegene, a correspondent, and  news anchor Kushmaro received the award in the broadcast media category for a five-part series entitled “Mefotzalim” (Split Up: The Story of the Ethiopian Jewish Community) that follows the lives of Jewish Ethiopians left behind after the community’s mass immigration to Israel, members of their family in Israel and their reunion in Ethiopia. Kraft received the award for print media in memory of Luis and Trudi Schydlowsky for articles on Jewish communities in the United States and Great Britain.

A special citation for Fostering Israel-Diaspora Relations through the Arts was presented to Shalva Band, which rose to fame after entering the finals on the Israeli TV show, “Rising Star.” The program determines the act that will represent Israel in the Eurovision song competition, held in Israel in 2019. The band’s inspiring guest performance at the Eurovision semi-finals brought the band international acclaim and invitations to perform around the world and in Jewish communities. The citation was established in 2014. Former winners are singers and songwriters Nurit Hirsh, David D’Or, Idan Raichel, David Broza and Yehoram Gaon.

In her address Minister of Aliya and Integration Pnina Tameno Shete stressed how important it is that the story of the Jewish people and the Jewish communities around the world will be told and will have a presence in Israeli society. She said “The vision as I see it is to know that there is a covenant between us as a Jewish people, and this is not dependent on where we live and where we are. As it says ‘All of Israel are responsible for one another.’” The minister added “For the Jewish story to be complete it must be told more in the press, in the school system and beyond. We have the obligation and the responsibility to place this at the front of the stage, exactly like this award by B’nai B’rith—an organization that does holy work in strengthening the connection between the Jewish of Israel and the Diaspora.” The minister told that “This Saturday night—in line with the series ‘Split Up’ for which journalists Dany Kushmaro and Brano Tegene won the award—I will fly to Ethiopia and begin the implementation of one of the national tasks that I have set for myself—the immigration of those waiting in Ethiopia. In about a week I will return to Israel with two planeloads of Olim—this is the realization of the Zionist dream in its purest sense.”

CEO of B’nai B’rith International Daniel S. Mariaschin, and the Chairman of the B’nai B’rith World Center Dr. Haim Katz, delivered videotaped greetings on the importance of the Journalism Award, presented for the 28th year, in strengthening the connection between Israel and Diaspora Jewry. Alan Schneider, director of the B’nai B’rith World Center initiated and moderated the event.

Since its establishment in 1992, the B’nai B’rith World Center Award for Journalism has recognized excellence in reporting on contemporary Diaspora Jewish communities and on the state of Israel-Diaspora relations in the Israeli print, broadcast and online media. The award is widely recognized as the most prestigious prize in the Israeli media industry for Diaspora reportage and was established to help strengthen the relationship between Israel and the Diaspora. The award highlights the important contributions the media can make toward strengthening the relationship between Israel and world Jewry by encouraging quality reporting on Diaspora communities and Israel-Diaspora relations.

The distinguished members of the award jury are: Ya’akov Ahimeir, past editor and anchor, Israel Public Broadcasting Corporation and Lifetime Achievement Award winner for 2016; Professor Yehudith Auerbach, School of Communication, Bar Ilan University; Professor Sergio DellaPergola, The Institute of Contemporary Jewry, Hebrew University; Sallai Meridor, former Israeli ambassador to the United States and former chairman of the Zionist Executive and Jewish Agency for Israel; Professor Gabriela Shalev, Higher Academic Council, Ono Academic College and former Israeli ambassador to the United Nations; journalist Yair Sheleg; Asher Weill, publisher and editor of “Ariel” The Israel Review of Arts and Letters (1981-2003).

The awards are presented in memory of the late Wolf Matsdorf, editor of the World Center-Jerusalem’s journal “Leadership Briefing” and a journalist in Israel and Australia, and his wife, Hilda, a pioneer in social work in both Australia and Israel, and in memory of Luis and Trudi Schydlowsky. The award is made possible through donations from the Matsdorf family and B’nai B’rith World Center-Jerusalem board member Daniel Schydlowsky.

For further information contact:
Golan Yossifon, Media advisor, 052-5625135
Alan Schneider, Director, B’nai B’rith World Center, 052-5536441,

You can find media coverage of the award below:

B’nai B’rith International has advocated for global Jewry and championed the cause of human rights since 1843. B’nai B’rith is recognized as a vital voice in promoting Jewish unity and continuity, a staunch defender of the State of Israel, a tireless advocate on behalf of senior citizens and a leader in disaster relief. With a presence around the world, we are the Global Voice of the Jewish Community. Visit