Professor Wiesel and Cohen received the award from businessman and philanthropist Leonid Nevzlin, founder of the NADAV Foundation.
The NADAV Jewish Peoplehood Award, in its fourth consecutive year, was established to promote and nurture global Jewish unity and belonging among Jews, a feeling that has been weakened in recent years.
The award is given to individuals and organizations in the Jewish world as an appreciation for their contribution in strengthening global Jewish identity, and deepening the connection between Jews around the world.
Last year, the recipients of the NADAV award were Professor Yehezkel Dror, one of the world’s leading analysts in policy planning and management, for his life’s work of promoting Jewish leadership in Israel and around the world, and Joseph Cedar, an award-winning Israeli film director and screenwriter, for enhancing Jewish pride and strengthening Jewish identity, particularly within the young generation.
Among the recipients of the award in previous years were Ambassador Stuart Eizenstat, former US undersecretary of state, for his exceptional and unique contribution to the Jewish people, and Angelica Berrie, president of the Russell Berrie Foundation and chairman of the Hartman Institute in North America, for her contribution in raising new and pluralistic voices within the Jewish tradition and promoting dialogue between Jews of different backgrounds; and for the video, “We Con The World,” by the Latma Group, following the 2010 flotilla incident.
Elie Wiesel is a writer, journalist, and a human rights activist who is widely acknowledged and decorated for his work. After surviving the extermination camps, he began engaging in global action to commemorate the Holocaust and its lessons, and was awarded the Nobel Peace Prize for his achievements.
Wiesel has authored numerous books that deal with the tragedy of the Jewish People in the twentieth century, as well as Jewish heritage that was a central part of his childhood.
He was the founding chairman of the United States Holocaust Memorial Council until 1986, when he established the Elie Wiesel Foundation for Humanity, whose goal is to fight against racism and intolerance through dialogue and education.
Avishai Cohen is an internationally acknowledged Israeli jazz musician. He served In the IDF military band for two years and his musical career flourished when he was living in New York and began experimenting and collaborating with various musicians, such as Chick Corea.
He served as the artistic director of the Red Sea Jazz Festival, performed worldwide and released thirteen albums so far, among which is his recent album, Duende. His musical creation combines traditional Jewish elements with modern jazz in a rich variety of styles.