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Local Leader Speaks at Knesset

February 23, 2012
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Gail Norry

Gail Norry, a Rydal resident and chair of National Women's Philanthropy of the Jewish Federations of North America, recently spoke about the power of female leadership before a Knesset committee during a recent mission to Israel.

She traveled there as part of a Federation "Heart to Heart" mission, which included 153 women from around the country, 34 of them from the Philadelphia area.

During her informational presentation at a subcommittee meeting for Diaspora relations, she told Israeli government leaders about recent studies showing that American women hold more than 50 percent of the wealth in the country and often take charge of household philanthropic decisions.

"We're certainly a power to be reckoned with," Norry, 47, said, adding that Women's Philanthropy raised $160 million nationally last year, accounting for roughly a quarter of the federation system's national campaign.

Norry said she also brought up concerns about recent news reports on ultra-religious communities in Israel attempting to segregate buses and harass women.

"Women here are paying attention and we wanted to see them take swift action to change course," Norry said. "We want to see their citizens treated in as democratic fashion as possible."

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