AS A 116-YEAR-OLD organization, Jewish National Fund (JNF) has established a reputation for bettering the lives of Israelis. JNF has turned barren deserts into thriving cities and sand into thousands of acres of fertile farmland. JNF has helped mitigate Israel’s water crisis, planted millions of trees, built hundreds of parks, and laid infrastructure for housing from the Galilee to the Negev with its groundbreaking Go North and Blueprint Negev initiatives. Most recently, with the generous help of its donors, JNF is on the ground aiding Israel replant, rebuild, and restore following the devastating fires that ravaged the country last November.
Spearheading JNF’s efforts and initiatives locally is Lisa Grier, JNF’s Orange County Director. Lisa lives in Irvine with her husband Andrew, their two-year-old twin daughters Charlotte and Blake, and family French bulldog Tank. Prior to joining JNF, Lisa served as Business Performance Advisor at Insperity, Business Development Manager at Agility Logistics, and Market Development Sales Executive at FedEx. Lisa has always been passionate about the Jewish community and Israel. Amongst her many positions as a lay leader, Lisa was a member of National Young Leadership Cabinet Member and Co-Chair of a mission to Israel in 2012, NextGen (JFFS) Chair, Planning and Funding Committee Vice Chair, and has held many other campaign chairs and has sat on numerous other committees. She has also chaired a young leadership mission to Israel. In addition, Lisa teaches confirmation at University Synagogue in Irvine.
Lisa grew up in Southern California, and attended California State University, Fresno where she earned a Bachelor of Science in Criminology.
“I have been and continue to be blown away by what JNF does in Israel,” said Lisa. “No other organization can say that they impact the lives of Israelis in such a meaningful way a daily bases. It’s amazing that we have a One Billion Dollar Roadmap for the Next Decade, which we are three years into and have already raised over $425 million! I am proud to work at an organization that is rated 4 out of 4 stars on Charity Navigator due to being fiscally accountable with every dollar.”
In her short time with JNF, Lisa has hit the ground running with exceptional events to showcase the work of her organization and re-introduce the community to JNF. In February in recognition of Jewish Disabilities Awareness and Inclusion Month (JDAIM), the OC community hosted one of JNF’s partners, Red Mountain Therapeutic Riding Center (RMTRC) and its project coordinator, Jill Oron. Jill discussed how RMTRC provides horseback riding therapy to nearly 200 children and adults with physical and mental disabilities as well as emotional and behavioral issues in one of the most remote corners of Southern Israel.
JNF also held an inspiring event in Newport Coast in honor of JDAIM. The featured speaker was Yossi Kahana Director of JNF’s Task Force on Disabilities, an umbrella and coordinating body for the range of JNF partnership programs that serve people with disabilities throughout Israel. Yossi ensures that JNF partners and programs are effective, high quality, and fiscally strong. ““More than 10% of Israelis have some form of mental or physical disability. JNF’s vision is to make sure that all Israelis can be part of Israeli society and enjoy life with dignity and belonging,” explained Yossi.
Additionally, Lisa has hosted two other parlor meetings and a JNFuture event in the community. Lisa is looking forward to connecting the people of Orange County to Israel through JNF. “Leaving the for-profit world was the best decision for me to be truly fulfilled. I am thankful to JNF for all that it does and I am thrilled to be a part of this special family!”
JNF’s next community event will be its annual Breakfast for Israel, which will be held on September 14 and feature Pulitzer Prize winner Bret Stephens. For more information and to learn more on how you can get involved, contact Lisa at firstname.lastname@example.org or (949) 260-0400 x986.