Michal Avera Samuel is a seasoned leader with 20 years’ experience pioneering and leading cross-cultural community-building and educational efforts in the Ethiopian Israeli community and the American Jewish community. Experienced in diversity, equity, and inclusion work to meet the needs of modern Jewish communities. Proven track record in fundraising and organizational growth, budget management, team development, hiring and supervising, and working with lay boards.
Michal was born in Gondar, Ethiopia, and walked with her family to a refugee camp in Sudan at the age of 8, from which they were airlifted to Israel in the 1984 “Operation Moses” rescue. Prior to joining University of Wisconsin-Madison as Researcher and Coordinator of Shalom Curriculum Project, she was a senior community shlicha in Ohio.
In Israel, Michal served as the CEO of FIDEL Association, advocating for the successful integration of Ethiopian Israelis and serving on the prestigious national Round Table Panel on Social Issues and research assistant for the Israel Democracy Institute. Michal holds Bachelor’s and master’s degrees in counseling from Haifa University.
She sits on numerous boards and volunteers with organizations. Served as spokesperson and advisor to the Scholarship Fund for Ethiopian Jews. She is part of leadership fellowship as Jewish Women’s Foundation of NY Illuminate – The Collective, Cohort 2, The Jewish Women of Color Resilience Circle – cohort 3, National Council of Jewish Women- Feminist Leaders Fellowship “Connection for Impact” and Training in Educational and social activist leadership.