Neil Harris, DFI Senior Educator (Israel)

Neil Harris (he/him/his) is the DFI Israel Director. He was born in London in 1956 and studied acting and educational theater before moving to Israel in 1979. He was a founding member and three times General Secretary of Kibbutz Tuval.In 1981, Neil was drafted into the IDF and spent two years as a medic in the First Lebanon War. Following the military, he spent two years working in Community Theater and on programs supporting “youth-at-risk” in the central Israeli town of Rehovot. Returning to Kibbutz Tuval in 1985, Neil started to work in the field of Experiential Education for Social Change, and since then has been facilitating programs on HIV/AIDS Prevention, Jewish/Palestinian-Arab Dialogue, LGBTQ Related Issues, and general democratic dilemmas in Israeli Society. In addition to teaching in the Community Theater Department at the University of Haifa, Neil was a faculty member at the American Dance Festival, teaching “Performance and Activism” for performers interested in being agents of social change. Art and activism continued to be a central theme when in November 2001, Neil completed a walk of over 500 miles from Metulla to Eilat, interviewing Jewish and Palestinian-Arab Israeli citizens on “The State of the Nation” one year into the al-Aqsa Intifada. In the last few years, Neil has appeared professionally in a number of dance-theater productions in both Israel and the USA. Neil joined the DFI team in 2004-2005. He splits his time between living on Kibbutz Tuval and in south Tel Aviv.