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The Bernice S. Tannenbaum Prize

Media Contact: Jessica Rosenberg
PR and Marketing Associate, Hadassah
Program Contact: Rabbi Ellen Flax
Director, The Hadassah Foundation

Hadassah Foundation Awards Sixth Annual
Bernice S. Tannenbaum Award To Dr. Yifat Bitton

Recipient Honored for Establishing Tmura—The Israeli Antidiscrimination Legal Center to fight for Israeli women who suffer sexual, physical and economic abuse

Dr. Yifat Bitton, founder of Tmura
NEW YORK, June 9, 2014—The Hadassah Foundation announced today Dr. Yifat Bitton, founder of Tmura, is the recipient of this year’s Bernice S. Tannenbaum Award. The prize honors annually an outstanding young female leader who advances the status of women and girls in Israel or the United States. The Award will be presented at a dinner ceremony in New York City on June 10, 2014.


The Hadassah Foundation is a philanthropic pioneer in the fields of economic security for low-income Israeli women as well as leadership and self-esteem programs for adolescent Jewish girls and young women in the United States. Tmura became a grantee of the Hadassah Foundation two years ago. Dr. Yifat Bitton is the founder, chairperson, and senior attorney at Tmura—The Israeli Antidiscrimination Center, which fights for the rights of women who have suffered sexual, physical, and economic abuse.

Since founding Tmura in 2006, Dr. Bitton, an attorney with degrees from Hebrew University’s Law School and Yale Law School, has impacted both Israeli courts and public policy. Her work has ensured that women who have suffered from sexual violence can have their cases tried in a civil court, and that women whose economic rights have been abused are protected by the legal system. Before the establishment of Tmura, only four rape cases had ever been brought before the civil courts in Israel; now, dozens of such cases have been successfully tried, with unprecedented damages awarded to each victim. In addition to her work at Tmura, which is on a pro-bono basis, Dr. Bitton is an associate professor at the School of Management Academic Studies in Rishon LeTzion and a well-known feminist legal scholar. For the past eight years, she has also sat on the board of the New Israel Fund.

"Dr. Bitton’s work has had a significant impact on the lives of some of Israel’s most vulnerable women,” said Donna Gerson, Chair of the Hadassah Foundation. “Her intelligence and determination make her worthy of recognition and we are excited to bestow the Tannenbaum Award on such an innovative leader.”

“It is a privilege and an honor to be recognized by the Hadassah Foundation as a feminist leader, following in the footsteps of Bernice Tannenbaum,” said Dr. Bitton.

Named in honor of Bernice S. Tannenbaum’s lifetime of service to the Jewish people, the State of Israel, and Hadassah, the Women's Zionist Organization of America, the Tannenbaum Award aims to recognize and inspire those who work to advance the cause of girls and women. The Bernice S. Tannenbaum Prize was conceived and implemented through generous contributions from Joan and Leonard Leiman with additional funding provided by The Philip and Muriel Berman Foundation. Past prize recipients are: Rabba Sara Hurwitz (2013), Dean of Yeshivat Maharat; Ifat Baron (2012), Executive Director of IT Works; Danielle Cantor (2011), Design and Communications Manager, Jewish Women International; Lena Gurary (2010), (former) Director, Supportive Community: Women’s Business Development Center, Israel; and Vardit Dameri Madar (2009), Director, Legal Department, Yedid, Israel.

About The Hadassah Foundation
The Hadassah Foundation, founded in 1999 by Hadassah, the Women’s Zionist Organization of America, is dedicated to refocusing the priorities of the Jewish community through innovative and creative funding for women and girls in the United States and Israel. For more information, visit www.hadassahfoundation.org. The Foundation seeks to augment the work of Hadassah, the Women's Zionist Organization of America, and has awarded grants totaling approximately $6.1 million to more than 70 nonprofit organizations since 2000.

About Hadassah, the Women's Zionist Organization of America
Hadassah, the Women's Zionist Organization of America, is the largest women's Zionist Jewish membership organization in the United States, and was founded in 1912. With over 330,000 members, associates, and supporters, Hadassah is now in its second century, growing our commitment to innovative and life-changing medical care and research, women's empowerment, education, advocacy, philanthropy and building Jewish identity – in Israel, America and around the world. For more information, visit www.hadassah.org.

See more photos from the event

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