Interview with founder of the NU Campaign
Hometown: South Africa/Israel
Project: NU Campaign is an Israeli clothing brand that supports important Israeli and Jewish charities.
In one sentence, tell us who you are.
I am a proud father, husband, and Jew who is deeply passionate about the Jewish people, homeland, and religion!
What inspired you to embark on the path of an innovator?
I have been involved in informal Jewish education and Israel activism for over ten years. I had a burning desire to create an ongoing sustainable project in Israel that would cater to the hundreds of students that I was interacting with each year from all over the world, and that would combine my passion for the Jewish people and the State of Israel with the need to establish myself in Israel.
What challenges do you foresee in your field?
Firstly launching a new venture is not easy and it requires lots of guts, faith, and staying power. I have had a very good response from people and organizations out there, and the biggest challenge is finding the support to make ideas come to fruition.
Who can you relate to in Jewish history (or in your field of interest)?
I admire so many great leaders throughout Jewish history—people who went against the tide and made great sacrifices for our people. People like King David, Bar-Kochba, Rabbi Akiva, Herzl, Hanna Sennesh, Rav Kook, Yonni Netanyahu, Eli Cohen, Shai Agassi, and so many more!
What is the most valuable thing you have learned from the PresenTense community?
There are many valuable things that I have gained from PresenTense, but if I have to choose one it is the ability to clearly define the exact thing that I am aiming to achieve! This has allowed me to be more focused, cut away the excess, clearly state the business model, and sleep a bit better at night!
Who have you met at PresenTense that has made the most impact on your project?
So far the most inspirational meetings for me were the visit to Better Place and the VIP session with Saul Singer. I have also gained much from the sessions with both Ariel and Aharon. I find the general PT experience of great value—a community of excellent examples and strong support!
What big question are you struggling with right now?
How to bring others on board and share the work load.
If all goes as planned, where will your project be one year from now?
In one year NU Campaign will represent over twenty leading Israeli and Jewish non-profit organizations and will be running a number of successful educational and awareness campaigns for our featured causes, inspiring thousands of young Jews worldwide to get involved with Israel and the Jewish people!
What do you hope to see change / to help change in your field in the next ten years?
I would like to see more innovative ways to reach out to the majority of disconnected Jews in the world. I would also like to see more emphasis on nation building and Jewish unity as the primary message in Jewish education, both in Israel and abroad.
What is your vision for the future of PresenTense?
I really see PT expanding the model to more places worldwide including the UK, Australia, and South Africa. I had a crazy idea for PT that they launch their own Facebook style social networking website—to connect all the fellows and networks both socially and professionally...
David is just one of 16 fellows from the PresenTense Global Fellowship's Class of 2010. Read and learn about the others here.