Ohio Chapter

Since its founding in 1995, the Ohio Chapter has sponsored the Reim Sports Outdoor Court Project which is located 2.5 miles from the Gaza Strip. The Chapter has also underwritten two other key projects: a clubhouse at the Navy Base in Rosh Hanikra (sponsored by the Krasney Family), and The Elyakim Clubhouse (sponsored by the Reisman Family).  In addition, the Ohio Chapter has underwritten clubs, mobile gyms, and synagogues all over Israel. In 2010, the Ohio Chapter sponsored 38 IMPACT students.

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Ohio Region | Beachwood, OH | 216-367-0636 | ohio@FIDF.org

Ohio Chapter Upcoming Events

Ohio Chapter Past Events


The Ohio chapter of Friends of Israel Defense Forces has sponsored four men’s missions to Israel, but a trip that took place Oct. 23 to Oct. 30 was special – its first women’s trip to Israel. READ MORE


550 gather for FIDF Ohio Chapter Annual Dinner supporting programs for Israeli soldiers CLEVELAND, Sept. 13 – Some 550 community leaders gathered Sunday for the Friends of the Israel Defense Forces (FIDF) Ohio Chapter Annual Dinner at Executive Caterers to celebrate the brave men and women of the Israel Defense Forces (IDF). The evening featured a keynote speech by CNN regular, Pulitzer Prize-winning Wall Street Journal foreign-affairs columnist and deputy editorial page editor, and the former Jerusalem Post editor-in-chief, Bret Stephens.  READ MORE


CLEVELEAND, June 20– A recording-breaking 403 participants from Cleveland’s Jewish community and across Ohio gathered June 1 at the Beechmont Country Club for the largest-ever Friends of the Israel Defense Forces (FIDF) Ohio Chapter Guys’ Night Out to support the brave soldiers of the Israel Defense Forces (IDF).  READ MORE  CLICK TO SEE PHOTOS


Hundreds of Israeli soldiers on Israel Defense Forces bases across Israel are enjoying Chanukah thanks to support fromthe Friends of the Israel Defense Forces (Midwest region. FIDF’s ambassadors in Israel brought jelly-fi lled doughnuts tothe paratroopers brigade, which the FIDF Midwest region adopted as part of the FIDF Adopt-A-Brigade Program. Seemore Chanukah coverage taking place in our community starting on page 18. READ MORE


Islamic terrorism expert expresses support for Israel at Ohio Annual Dinner

Brigitte Gabriel, a Lebanese Christian journalist, author, commentator and activist, expressed her strong support of Israel and the Israel Defense Forces Oct. 11, 2015, at B’nai Jeshurun Congregation in Pepper Pike.

“The IDF is a beacon of light in a very dark corner of the world,” Gabriel told a crowd of about 500 as the keynote speaker at the Friends of the IDF Ohio Chapter’s annual dinner.   READ MORE

Click Here to see Photos from the Gala


Clevelanders get up-close look at FIDF at work

Lane Schlessel, executive director of the Ohio chapter of Friends of the Israel Defense Forces, proudly talks about the range of support services IDF soldiers receive. Last year, Schlessel led a group of IDF supporters on a mission to Israel so they could see for themselves the day-to-day impact of these programs on the soldiers. It was so successful, he said, that another mission – Ohio FIDF Guys Mission 2015 – was organized for this year. READ MORE


Chicago, IL. Nov. 5, 2015 - Despite the recent resurgence in attacks on Israeli civilians, 40 American supporters of Friends of the Israel Defense Forces (FIDF) sent their own messages of courage by biking the length of Israel last week – from the Galilee hills in the north to the Red Sea in the south.

FIDF’s “Israel on Two Wheels” Cycling Tour of Israel brought this adventurous group on a once-in-a-lifetime journey, visiting Israel Defense Forces (IDF) bases along their route to show support for Israel’s brave men and women in uniform.   READ MORE

Friends of the IDF Casino Night Raises 
more than $100,000 For IDF Soldiers

Cleveland, OH, June 13, 2015 – More than 300 supporters of the Ohio Chapter of Friends of the Israel Defense Forces (FIDF) last night played casino games, held raffles – and used more than $100,000 in proceeds to benefit wellbeing and educational programs for Israeli soldiers.

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IDF soldier makes an IMPACT! at FIDF event

Rachel Cohen, a former medic and unit commander in an IDF Air Force anti-missile unit, was the keynote speaker at the Ohio chapter of the Friends of the Israel Defense Forces Women’s Tea luncheon on May 18th, 2015, at the Mayfield Sand Ridge Club in South Euclid. It was a fundraiser for the FIDF’s IMPACT! Program which provides college scholarships for Israel’s socio-economically disadvantaged combat soldiers.

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FIDF “Christmas Eve in Tel Aviv” Event

Over 250 prominent young professionals from across Ohio gathered to attend the Friends of the Israel Defense Forces (FIDF) Young Professionals Ohio “Christmas Eve in Tel Aviv” winter party this past Tuesday evening, December 24, 2013 at the Paladar Latin Kitchen and Rum Bar in Cleveland, Ohio.

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Ohio Chapter 2013 Gala

The Friends of the Israel Defense Forces (FIDF) Ohio Chapter hosted its Annual Gala Dinner in mid-October where they honored the dedicated soldiers of Israel for their brave commitment to the state of Israel and world Jewry.

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Friends of the IDF “Guys Night Out” Brings Together 300 Supporters to Raise $100,000 For IDF Soldiers

The Ohio Chapter hosted its 2nd Annual “Guys’ Night Out” Event on Thursday, May 30th, at the Beechmont Country Club in Cleveland, OH. Around 300 FIDF supporters from across the Cleveland community came together at the event, which was sponsored by 45 different supporters
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Young Professional Cleveland’s Snow Ball Winter Party

Snow Ball 2012, held at Paladar Latin Kitchen & Rum Bar located in Eton Collection on Chagrin Blvd, offered a fun trendy and social environment. The top notch evening offered delicious Latin Fusion food catered by Chef Yuval along with a special rum bar, dancing, and great company. The guests enjoyed the flavors of Latin America while treasuring time with friends, meeting new people and networking with other young professionals in the community.
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Ohio Gala Dinner - 2012

Over 500 prominent lay leaders and FIDF supporters from across Ohio came together for the Friends of the Israel Defense Forces (FIDF) Ohio Gala Dinner that was held on Tuesday, September 11, at Executive Caterers at Landerhaven.

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Ohio Gala Dinner - September 7, 2011

On September 7, 2011, over 500 supporters of Friends of the IDF Ohio Chapter gathered at Executive Caterers at Landerhaven to show the Cleveland community’s support of the organization and to honor the Weiss Family.
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2010 Ohio IMPACT! Mission to Israel

Members of the Ohio Chapter participated in the 2010 IMPACT! Mission to Israel from November 5-12.
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Ohio Annual Gala Dinner

On October 5, over 450 people attended the Ohio Chapter Annual Gala Dinner, held at Landerhaven. The Gala Dinner was dedicated to the support of FIDF Educational Programs benefiting IDF soldiers. The significance of these programs is grounded in their contribution to the general knowledge of every soldier as well as to the society of Israel as a whole.
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FIDF Mission to Israel


On November 6, 2009, the Ohio Friends of the IDF embarked on what proved to be an unforgettable mission.  The itinerary included many of the must see tourist destinations - the Old City of Jerusalem, the Dead Sea, Tel Aviv nightlife, and Israeli wineries. We also visited the experiential Palmach Museum which brought to life how the underground Hagana defense group contributed to the founding of Israel.
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Ohio Region Chapter Board of Directors

Elie Weiss – Co-Chairman of the Board Jan Moskowitz
Richard Soclof - Co-Chairman of the Board Judy Nisman
Loren Frieder - Vice President Alice Rickel
Marcy Stahm - Secretary Rob Risman
Zev Weiss - Chairman Emeritus Anita Rosenbaum
Yael Cohen - Past President  Marcy Rosenthal 
Shelley Roth – Past President Leo Rosner
Harry Abraham Ileen Rosner
Beth Brody Nanette Ross
Michael Drusinsky Peter Saltz
Barry Freeman Esther Schachner
Lorin Gottlieb Marvin Schaefer
Erica Hartman Horvitz Edia Shai
Judy Kaufman Rabbi Joshua Skoff
Dr. Eric Kodish Rick Tannenbaum
Donna Kurit Betty Trangle
Geula Lando Rabbi Stephen Weiss
Dr. Ronald Lorig Lane Schlessel - Director 
Stacy Maxson
Tamir Oppenheim - Executive Director
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