About Us

The Israel Innovation Fund (TIIF) is a 501(3)(3) non-profit registered in the United States but largely based in Tel Aviv and Jerusalem.

Our vision is to reignite the Zionist spirit and meet the needs of Jewish Civilization in the twenty-first century by connecting people around the world through the vibrancy and creativity of contemporary Israeli culture.

“Start-Up Nation” taught us that Israel’s technological excellence flows from deeper elements of national character. Through cutting-edge contemporary culture, lifestyle and travel young diaspora Jews and non-Jews are discovering new ways to personally connect to the Israeli experience in ways that go far beyond conflict and survival.

The Fund operates as a venture philanthropic fund to develop this “Creative State,” investing and where necessary incubating high-impact enterprises that are capable of sustaining themselves through commercially viable revenue-generating activities. We also use the returns to support Israeli nonprofits that distinguish themselves for their innovation, efficiency and impact.

Our Team

ADAM SCOTT BELLOS

FOUNDER

FOUNDER

Adam is a serial entrepreneur who has worked in the United States, China and Israel. Raised in Cincinnati, he served in the IDF and now calls Tel Aviv home. He received his B.A. in Judaic Studies from the University of Arizona and an M.A. in Middle Eastern History from Tel Aviv University.

DAVID HAZONY

EXECUTIVE DIRECTOR

EXECUTIVE DIRECTOR

David has 25 years experience in writing, development and nonprofit management. His past positions included Vice President for Development at the Shalem Center, Managing Director at The Israel Project, and Editor-in-Chief of Azure and, later, The Tower. He has a Ph.D. from the Hebrew University in Jewish Philosophy and has authored, edited, or translated many volumes of Jewish and Zionist thought. He lives in Jerusalem.

TATIANA HASSON

DIRECTOR OF OUTREACH AND ENGAGEMENT

Director of Engagement and Director of Wine on the Vine

Tatiana was born and raised in Boston, MA. After graduating from Maimonides school she spent her gap year studying, traveling and volunteering in Israel. Tatiana graduated from UMD with a BS in Community Health. Upon graduation, she became a campus coordinator for the David Project. While living in Boston she established a new Moishe house, which hosts events for young Jewish adults to foster a senses of community among youth. She now lives in Jerusalem.

MAYA LISS

DIRECTOR OF RESOURCE DEVELOPMENT

Director of Resource Development

Born in Los Angeles, California, Maya helped launch the pro-Israel movement at UC Santa Barbara while gaining her BA in Communication. Maya moved to Israel in pursuit of her Master’s in Diplomacy and Conflict Studies at the Interdisciplinary Center in Herzliya and subsequently volunteered for IDF service. She assisted in improving the draft process of new Israeli immigrants for which she was granted the Soldier of Excellence award by the commanding general of the Manpower Directorate. After her release from the IDF, Maya has helped establish the Nefesh B’Nefesh Lone Soldier Program and the Tel Aviv Moishe House.

MICHAEL HILKOWITZ

DIRECTOR OF CONTENT

Director of Content

Michael grew up in Philadelphia, PA and has been teaching English and History as well as producing online content in Israel for the last 5 years. A graduate of the Philadelphia High School for International Affairs and Temple University, Michael brings a unique view on historical storytelling to content development.

JOHANN CHACKO

DIRECTOR of STRATEGIC COMMUNICATIONS

Director of Strategic Communications

Johann has previously worked as an independent consultant and open source analyst, and taught political science at Christ University in Bangalore, India. He received his B.A. as well as M.A. in Middle Eastern Studies from the University of Arizona.

DEB HOUBEN

Sommelier and Assistant Director of Wine on the Vine

Sommelier and Assistant Director of Wine on the Vine

Wine on the Vine. A Bostonian-Jerusalemite, Deb earned her B.FA from Carnegie-Mellon University, worked at MIT as media specialist/designer for the materials processing and microphotonics centers, and moved to Israel in December 2007. She has poured wine for the Golan Heights, Galil Mountain, Gvaot, Amphorae, and Jacques Capsouto wineries, sommed at La Regence and the King David Hotel, and acts as Friday sommelier at the Flam winery.

AVI ORLIAN

DIRECTOR OF BUSINESS DEVLEOPMENT

Director of Business Development

Avi Orlian has spent 2+ years in business development and start up consulting roles. He is currently finishing his professional studies in New York. He has a deep rooted passion for Israel stemming from his time in the country.

SOLOMON SOUZA

ARITST IN RESIDENCE

ARITST IN RESIDENCE

Our first Artist-in-Residence is Solomon Souza, who received international attention for his stunning ‘night gallery’ of Zionist portraits in Jerusalem’s Mahane Yehuda market. As part of the program, TIIF provides a living stipend, materials and studio expenses to Israeli artists who have proven success in Israel and embody a fresh artistic message. We promote our artists through events, digital campaigns, and publicity, in exchange for the rights to resell their work and related merchandise.

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