U.S. Government Leaders Experience Israel

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The NACo group with the mayor of Netanya
The NACo group with the mayor of Netanya

The America-Israel Friendship League sponsored a mission to Israel with the assistance of the National Association of Counties allowing county leaders from across the U.S. to visit Israel from November 12 -18, 2006.  Additional assistance and cooperation was provided by the Union of Local Authorities of Israel.  Participants included eleven county commissioners, executives and mayors, along with officials from the National Association of Counties.

Colleen Landkamer, former President of the National Association of Counties (NACo), is now the State Director of the USDA Rural Development in Minnesota. Radio stations and other media outlets in Minnesota had the opportunity to interview Landkamer from IsraCast Recording Studios in Jerusalem about the mission experience.

‘The AIFL is dedicated to building friendship and strengthening the ties between the U.S. and Israel and we are deeply grateful to these county leaders and the National Association of Counties for their interest in and commitment to this mission,’ said William Behrer , the AIFL’s Chief Operating Officer.

The group met with peers from a variety of communities in Israel including mayors from the Tel Aviv area, the Mayor of Jerusalem and members of the Knesset. Holy Sites and historical landmarks such as Masada and the Dead Sea were also part of the experience.

‘I am delighted to have been invited by the American-Israel Friendship League to participate in this years Mission to Israel,’ said the former NACo President and Blue Earth County Commissioner (MN) Colleen Landkamer.

Colleen Landkamer
Colleen Landkamer

There is so much we can learn as elected officials by interacting with dignitaries abroad. I am particularly interested in how elected officials there work cooperatively with their citizens to enhance economic development and security in their communities. I am excited about the opportunity and look forward to sharing the experience with NACo members.

Standing (from left to right)
1
Mr. Larry Naake
Executive Director
NACo
2
The Honorable Peter Corroon
Mayor
Salt Lake County, UT
3
The Honorable Colleen Landkamer
NACo President
Commisioner
Blue Earth County, MN
Website
4
Miriam Fierberg
Mayor of Netanya
5
Mr. Edwin Rosado
Legistlative Director
NACo
6
Mr. Bill Kennedy
Yellowstone County
7
The Honorable Valerie Brown
Second Vice President
Supervisor
Sonoma County, CA

Sitting (from left to right)
8
The Honorable Norman Mitchell, Sr.
Commisioner
Mecklenburg County, NC
9
The Honorable Eric Coleman
NACo President Elect
Commisioner
Oakland County, MI
10
The Honorable Sally Heyman
Commisioner
Miami-Dade County, FL
11
The Honorable Ilene Lieberman
Commisioner
Broward County, FL

 

About the AIFL

The America – Israel Friendship League (AIFL) is a non-sectarian, non-political, not-for-profit organization strengthening ties between the people of the United States and Israel ; bridging distances to reveal the beauty, the humanity, and the modern democratic values that define both nations.

About AIFL Missions

The AIFL’s missions to Israel are a vital part of its success in forging closer links between Israel and the United States. Each year, the AIFL sponsors several missions to Israel .  In 2006, this included judges, financial services executives, scholars, and Generation X and Y journalists.  The AIFL also sponsors visits to the U.S. of Israeli students as part of its Citizenship through Sports Exchange and Youth Ambassador Student Exchange programs.

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