(JTA) — David Myers has been named board president of the New Israel Fund several months after stepping down as CEO of the Center for Jewish History following a controversy-marred one-year tenure.
Myers, a Jewish history professor, left the Center for Jewish History in August after right-wing activists said his involvement with liberal organizations such as the New Israel Fund and J Street, as well as his views on the Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions movement targeting Israel, made him unfit to lead the Jewish organization. Myers has said he opposes “most forms of” boycotts of Israel.
He quit the post at the New York center to continue his work at UCLA and be near his wife.
Myers, who has served on the NIF board since 2013, succeeds Israeli attorney Talia Sasson, whose three-year term ends this month.
The New Israel Fund supports progressive causes in Israel. It says it has provided $300 million to over 900 Israeli civil society organizations.
Myers will continue to serve as the Sady and Ludwig Kahn Professor of Jewish History at UCLA, as well as the director of the Los Angeles university’s Luskin Center for History and Policy.
“For those of us who care about Israel’s future as a liberal democracy, there is no better home than the New Israel Fund,” he said in a statement announcing his appointment. “At a time when so many of those in power would undermine Israel’s democratic foundations, the New Israel Fund is leading the movement toward equality and social justice.”