Alti Rodal, one of the original founders of the Ukrainian Jewish Encounter and Chair of UJE’s Academic Council, is a historian, writer, former professor of Jewish history, and former official and advisor to the Government of Canada. She was born in Chernivtsi (Czernowitz) in Ukraine and received her early schooling in Israel. She was educated at McGill, Oxford, and Hebrew universities in the fields of history and literature. Her professional experience includes a decade of full-time and sessional teaching at universities in Montreal, Ottawa, and Oxford; research and writing under academic, policy institute, governmental, and other auspices; and over twenty years of senior advisory and management experience with the Government of Canada, including with the Privy Council Office, Royal Commissions of Inquiry, and central agencies. She is the author of a variety of studies and reports for government, as well as scholarly and other writing on aspects of identity, Jewish history and culture, inter-communal relations, and public policy. She has also served on the boards of several national Canadian NGOs/community organizations.
Adrian Karatnycky, one of the original founders and Co-Director of the Ukrainian Jewish Encounter, is a Senior Fellow at the Atlantic Council in the United States and director of its Ukraine-North America Dialogue. From 1993 until 2003, he was President of Freedom House, during which time he developed programs of assistance to democratic and human rights movements in Belarus, Serbia, Russia, and Ukraine, and devised a range of long-term comparative analytic surveys of democracy and political reform. For twelve years he directed the benchmark survey Freedom in the World and was co-editor of the annual Nations in Transit study of reform in the post-Communist world. He is a frequent contributor to Foreign Affairs, Newsweek, the Washington Post, the Wall Street Journal, the Financial Times, the New York Times, and many other periodicals. He is the co- author of three books on Soviet and post-Soviet themes.