Herbert Block was recently named executive director of the American Zionist Movement.
Are you better off now than you were four years ago?
I am very fortunate, both now and four years ago, to have a wonderful family. My wife and I are the proud parents of three great kids, who go to a Jewish day school and to a religious Zionist Summer camp. I am happy to have started a new position this month as Executive Director of the American Zionist Movement, which is composed of organizations and individuals representing a broad array of Zionist perspectives and engaging in a variety of philanthropic, educational and advocacy activities on behalf of Israel and the Jewish people. And, I was recently reappointed by President Obama to my third term as a Member of the US Commission for the Preservation of America’s Heritage Abroad, an independent Federal agency established to help preserve cultural sites in Eastern and Central Europe associated with the heritage of U.S. citizens. These include synagogues, cemeteries and other historic Jewish places, as well as sites of other faiths, and Holocaust memorials in the region.
Have you ever been the target of discrimination?
Not really myself, especially growing up in NYC and primarily working here, but I have dealt with many people throughout my career who have experienced racism and anti-Semitism. I have also worked closely with many Holocaust survivors and heard their stories of suffering and living under the ultimate discrimination perpetrated by the Nazis.
What was the last television show you binge watched?
I have watched every inning on MLB TV of the Israel baseball team playing in the World Baseball Classic. I have long been a big baseball fan and a strong supporter of Israel and I hope for the growth of the sport there.
What was your favorite vacation from your childhood?
Visiting Israel for the first time with my parents and meeting my cousins there and experiencing my heritage there firsthand. We also stopped in France and Italy. My mom did not like to fly so we crossed the ocean by ship on the legendary QE2 and I remember the great kosher dining room on the boat.