Press Release
December 1st, 2013

JIMENA Hires Southern California Program Director

Natalie Farahan, HeadshotSAN FRANCISCO – Natalie Farahan has been named JIMENA’s full-time Southern California Program Director. The San Francisco based non-profit organization, which was created in 2002 to raise awareness to Jewish refugees from Arab countries, is looking forward to its expansion in Southern California.

Gina Waldman, JIMENA’s Co-Founder and President notes that, “After a year-long intensive search, we are thrilled to have found a director to manage and develop JIMENA’s growing Southern California operations. Natalie will carry out JIMENA’s important programming, which includes an eye-witness Speakers Bureau, on-campus Mizrahi and Sephardic programming, Mizrahi Justice advocacy campaigns, Sephardic and Mizrahi cultural engagement and community building initiatives, and a JIMENA Oral History and Digital Experience Project.”

Natalie is a native of Indianapolis, IN and is a first-generation American with grandparents and parents who all emigrated from Iraq, Iran, and Israel. She is passionate about JIMENA’s mission and sees the organization as a vehicle to further the story of the Mizrahi Jewish refugees as well as their contributions to modern day society. “JIMENA fills the gaps of public knowledge in the story of Jewish immigration and their work ensures that the history of Mizrahi Jews remains alive for the benefit of future generations” said Natalie.

Natalie hopes that JIMENA’s presence in Los Angeles will offer a new avenue for communal engagement and a public voice to the Mizrahi Jewish community. “I am honored to join JIMENA and I look forward to the opportunities and partnerships that the Los Angeles area offers.”

Natalie holds a Bachelors degree in Business Administration with a focus in Entrepreneurship from Loyola Marymount University. She recently completed a Masters degree in Public Administration from the University of Southern California and a Masters in Jewish Nonprofit Management from Hebrew Union College. During her tenure as a graduate student, she spent time interning at the Women’s Department of the Jewish Federation of Los Angeles and at the International Relations Department of American Jewish Committee’s Los Angeles chapter.

Natalie can be reached at

For further information, please contact:
Sarah Levin, Director
JIMENA: Jews Indigenous to the Middle East and North Africa
Tel: 415-626-5062

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