The Team - Israel Story The Team - Israel Story
The Team

Israel Story or Sipur Israeli, is a radio initiative that brings high quality, long-form non-fiction content to, and about, Israel.

We began as a small podcast, meant for family and friends. But what followed exceeded our wildest dreams: Within a few months, the show was picked up by Galey Tzahal, Israel’s leading national radio station, and was offered a primetime slot. Each of our first season’s eleven episodes reached an estimated audience of hundreds of thousands of listeners. The response was overwhelming, and so we’ve kept making stories in Hebrew, and also expanded into English, produced in partnership with Tablet Magazine and PRX!

Israelis, we all know, are a nation of storytellers. So in many ways our task was an easy one – to shine a spotlight on the little (and big!) dramas that comprise Israeli life. Our primary goal is to tell the story of a different, diverse Israel: To amplify voices that are rarely heard on the mainstream media, to showcase and celebrate the plurality of local communities and traditions. By bringing you multi-faceted narratives on thought-provoking themes, Israel Story aims to become a refreshing alternative. We don’t want to talk about Bibi, Lapid or Bennett. We’re kind of tired about hearing about the threat of the Iranian bomb or the Security Council resolutions. Instead, we hope to present a cross-section of ‘Israeliness,’ entering communities that are typically sidelined and silenced, and to tell stories that are not aired anywhere else: These are the stories you’d tell a friend over a plate of hummus on a Friday afternoon, the stories you’d share with your partner at the end of the day – Everyday stories, told by, and about, regular Israelis.

 

 
The Team:
Mishy Harman

Dr. Mishy Harman is the co-founder and host of the show. Following his military service, he studied history at Harvard, archeology at Cambridge and wrote his PhD – a biography of

Dr. Mishy Harman is the co-founder and host of the show. Following his military service, he studied history at Harvard, archeology at Cambridge and wrote his PhD – a biography of the first Protestant missionary in Ethiopia – at the Hebrew University. He lives in Jerusalem, with his wife Federica and their two dogs, Nomi and Golda.


Yochai Maital

Yochai grew up in Haifa, but now can’t imagine calling anywhere but Tel Aviv his home. After eight years as an intelligence officer in the army, Yochai embarked on a

Yochai grew up in Haifa, but now can’t imagine calling anywhere but Tel Aviv his home. After eight years as an intelligence officer in the army, Yochai embarked on a new trajectory, and started studying creative writing at Tel Aviv’s Minshar College for Arts. Ecologically minded, Yochai has built multiple eco-houses, and co-founded Tel Aviv’s first (and still only) organic food Co-Op. He lives with his wife, young daughter and son, and, of course, Trotsky the dog.


Zev Levi

Zev grew up in Perth, Australia, and studied Engineering and English at UWA. Having lived and worked in Perth’s local music scene, he developed a passion for high-quality production and

Zev grew up in Perth, Australia, and studied Engineering and English at UWA. Having lived and worked in Perth’s local music scene, he developed a passion for high-quality production and well-crafted audio. Now living near his old yeshiva in Jerusalem, Zev is involved with religious movements that pursue equality in Israel.


Joel Shupack

Joel grew up in Central Oregon and has been living in Portland for the last eight years. Eschewing popular fear-mongering, his father taught him to always talk to strangers. After

Joel grew up in Central Oregon and has been living in Portland for the last eight years. Eschewing popular fear-mongering, his father taught him to always talk to strangers. After following the classic “punk rocker to folksinger to bicycle mechanic” path, Joel has found his way to audio storytelling. Over the years he’s been a part of a few local radio and podcast projects, most recently a podcast called SquareMile.


Yoshi Fields

Yoshi is from Massachusetts and graduated with a B.A. in ethnography and religion from Hampshire College. In his undergraduate thesis, he wrote about how experiences with mortality affect the lives

Yoshi is from Massachusetts and graduated with a B.A. in ethnography and religion from Hampshire College. In his undergraduate thesis, he wrote about how experiences with mortality affect the lives of hospice workers. While working as a baker, he fell in love with podcasts as a form of storytelling. When he is not working on audio stories, Yoshi can be found camping, sipping smoothies, in silent meditation or strumming the few chords he knows on the guitar.


Skyler Inman

Skyler was born in Houston, Texas. After studying English and nonfiction creative writing at Yale, she packed her bags and headed to the Middle East. Before joining Israel Story, Skyler

Skyler was born in Houston, Texas. After studying English and nonfiction creative writing at Yale, she packed her bags and headed to the Middle East. Before joining Israel Story, Skyler produced a podcast of her own, called Intractable, and pursued her MA in International Development Studies at Hebrew University. In her spare time, when she’s not holding a microphone in someone’s face, Skyler enjoys learning languages, offering her services as a shabbos goy, and eating hummus by the spoonful. She lives in Tel Aviv with her neurotic mutt, Safi.


Rotem Zin

Born in Seattle, Washington, Rotem now lives in Haifa with his wife, four kids, and their dog Billie. Together, they’ve enjoyed traveling the world, trekking in North America, South America,

Born in Seattle, Washington, Rotem now lives in Haifa with his wife, four kids, and their dog Billie. Together, they’ve enjoyed traveling the world, trekking in North America, South America, Europe, Africa, and Southeast Asia. Rotem has been Israel Story’s CFO since 2017, and is passionate about music and Maccabi Tel Aviv FC.


Jeff Umbro

Jeff Umbro comes from digital marketing and publicity departments of the book publishing world. In 2017, he launched The Podglomerate, a podcast company charged with producing, distributing, monetizing, and nurturing

Jeff Umbro comes from digital marketing and publicity departments of the book publishing world. In 2017, he launched The Podglomerate, a podcast company charged with producing, distributing, monetizing, and nurturing podcasts. Currently, The Podglomerate is driving millions of downloads across a slate of original shows and partners that have included NBC Universal, Audible, DAX/Global, Serial Box, CoinDesk, LitHub, and the Daily Dot, among others. The Podglomerate has been working with Israel Story since 2019. You can find more info at https://www.thepodglomerate.com, and can follow Jeff on Twitter @jeffumbro.


Alex Lisogor

Alex Lisogor is originally from Moscow, Russia. When she was a child, her family moved to Israel, then Germany, then back to Russia. This made it impossible for her to

Alex Lisogor is originally from Moscow, Russia. When she was a child, her family moved to Israel, then Germany, then back to Russia. This made it impossible for her to answer the question, “So, where do you come from?” She graduated from the Higher School of Economics in Moscow with a B. A. in Journalism and, after college, moved to Israel (again), where she taught kids with special needs. She’s worked on various radio platforms and is dedicated to give a voice to people that usually “fly under the radar.” Today she lives in Jerusalem which is a perfect place to reconcile the different religious, ethnic, and cultural backgrounds that comprise her identity.


Abigail Adler

Abigail is a native New Yorker who graduated with a B.A. in English Literature and Creative Writing from Yeshiva University in Manhattan, where she became completely enamored with the art

Abigail is a native New Yorker who graduated with a B.A. in English Literature and Creative Writing from Yeshiva University in Manhattan, where she became completely enamored with the art of storytelling. She was the Arts & Culture Editor for the college’s newspaper, and an anchor for the college’s weekly-aired news station, interviewing, engaging, and “becoming one” with the lively locals of New York City. She’s currently pursuing an M.A. in Journalism, Communications, and New Media at Hebrew University. Her addictions include travel, dance, meditation, reading, blogging, and cheesy fries. When she’s not clacking away at her laptop, you can find her tearing up the dance floor on a night out on the town. Apart from being an intern at Israel Story, she runs a humorous, unconventional blog that covers travel, pop culture, and the millennial lifestyle.


Marie Röder

Marie grew up in Berlin, Germany, and holds a B.A. in Middle Eastern Studies and Political Science and is currently wrapping up her M.A. in Government Studies. She came to

Marie grew up in Berlin, Germany, and holds a B.A. in Middle Eastern Studies and Political Science and is currently wrapping up her M.A. in Government Studies. She came to Israel for the first time as a volunteer and right away fell in love with the country and its people. Ever since, she has been moving back and forth between Berlin and Tel Aviv. Besides working as a journalist and interning at Israel Story, Marie likes practicing yoga and enjoys hiking. She is passionate about feminism and social justice issues.


Hannah Barg

Hannah Barg is a St. Louis, Missouri native with a passion for education, radio and storytelling. Hannah graduated from Mount Holyoke College in 2014 with a B.A. in Anthropology. After

Hannah Barg is a St. Louis, Missouri native with a passion for education, radio and storytelling. Hannah graduated from Mount Holyoke College in 2014 with a B.A. in Anthropology. After college, she moved to Chicago to work for a college access program, working directly with low-income, first-generation college-bound high school students. In 2017, Hannah interned at StoryCorps, an American oral history project committed to preserving the stories of everyday people. Hannah’s excited to be back in Israel, the place which sparked her interest in culture and desire to tell complex stories about people and place.


Ari Jacob

Ari is from Melbourne, Australia. In 2017, he finished studying Jazz Composition; said goodbye to his wedding band, students, friends, and family; and came to Israel, finally settling in the

Ari is from Melbourne, Australia. In 2017, he finished studying Jazz Composition; said goodbye to his wedding band, students, friends, and family; and came to Israel, finally settling in the place that had made him melt (from the heat of the sun and the warmth of the people). He’s been making music for as long as he can remember. Since being in Israel, he’s explored the music, people, and food of both Jerusalem and Tel Aviv, getting to know their characters and weaving his own way into their stories. Somehow, somewhere along the way, Ari was sent an incredibly lucky star and found himself in Virginia Beach, on an Israel Story live-show tour, with 10 remarkable people who he hardly knew at the time. And there he was, woven inextricably into the Israel Story story.


Shai Satran

Shai grew up in Jerusalem, a middle brother between two lively sisters. Now he lives in Tel Aviv, where he is in the midst of a master’s program in clinical

Shai grew up in Jerusalem, a middle brother between two lively sisters. Now he lives in Tel Aviv, where he is in the midst of a master’s program in clinical psychology. Shai is an active advocate for women’s rights and volunteers at the Jerusalem Rape Crisis Center, where he dedicates one morning a week to facilitating workshops in Jerusalem high schools on topics ranging from sexual assault to pornography.


Maya Kosover

Maya is originally from Haifa and currently living in Jaffa. She is married to Rotem, and together they raise Noah, their dog. Breathing radio from childhood, Maya later turned her

Maya is originally from Haifa and currently living in Jaffa. She is married to Rotem, and together they raise Noah, their dog. Breathing radio from childhood, Maya later turned her love into a profession. Maya is a veteran in TV and radio- she was the editor of “Anashim Ba-laila” with Kobi Meidan on Galei Tzahal. Today, she teaches at Sapir college and the pre-army academy in Jaffa, and spends most of her time recording, editing and story hunting for “Israel Story”. 


Ro’ee Gilron

Ro’ee is originally from Be’er Sheva. Once he finished his military service, he did his undergrad at Brandeis, and founded a tech start-up with Mishy. After working at a NASA

Ro’ee is originally from Be’er Sheva. Once he finished his military service, he did his undergrad at Brandeis, and founded a tech start-up with Mishy. After working at a NASA Lab conducting experiment in zero gravity environments, he returned to Israel, to begin his PhD in neuroscience at Tel Aviv University. Regardless of what he’s doing, he’s probably cycling to get there. To the great dismay of his friends (and any other normal person), Roee thinks that no distance is too great for a nice bike ride.