Trees of Peace: 2009 Olive Harvest Delegation >

Interfaith Peace-Builders Olive Harvest Delegation Arrives in Israel/Palestine

October 28, 2009

Interfaith Peace-Builders (IFPB) is pleased to announce that our 32 member delegation to Israel/Palestine entered Israel at the Ben-Gurion airport Wednesday morning and is now safely in Jerusalem.

The purpose of this delegation, the 32nd to make the trip since 2001, is to educate North American citizens about the region and deepen their understanding of its conflicts.

The delegation focuses on the Palestinian olive harvest which takes place each autumn. The olive harvest is an occasion of particular cultural and economic importance for Palestinian communities and a time when tensions between Israeli settlers and Palestinian residents of the West Bank run high.

Despite early signs that the Obama administration may shift the focus of US policy in Israel/Palestine, the government's position has won few results and US military aid to the region continues to flow unabated. Participants on this delegation have the unique opportunity to hear directly from Palestinians and Israelis regarding their hopes for peace and the role of the US government in promoting a resolution to the conflict.


A photo of the delegates at orientation in Washington, DC.

The delegation includes the following people:

Cindy Bagley - Manchester, New Hampshire
Jim Bailey - Fostoria, Ohio
Sid Bremer - Green Bay, Wisconsin
Linda Bronstein - West Hartford, Connecticut
Janet Chisholm - Bangor, Pennsylvania
Mike Daly - Washington, DC
Rob and Marie Deegan - Norfolk, Virginia
Mac Deford - Spruce Head, Maine
Pat Fontes - Hopkinton, Rhode Island
Carol Fuller - Santa Cruz, California
Kate G. - Medford, Oregon
Marlene and Bill Johnson - Augusta, Georgia
Scott Kennedy - Santa Cruz, California
Peter Klotz-Chamberlin - Santa Cruz, California
Lorraine LeBlanc - Metairie, Louisiana
Sandra Mackie - Gettysburg, Pennsylvania
Lynn MacMichael - Lafayette, California
Fredrica Meitzen - Gettysburg, Pennsylvania
Maryanne Mott - Santa Barbara, California
Amal Othman - Madison, Wisconsin
Jan Ramage - Kent, Washington
Jerry Rodesch - Green Bay, Wisconsin
Dorah Rosen - Santa Cruz, California
Mary Singaus - Los Angeles, California
Jenny Stormy Staats - Somes Bar, California
Cathy Stentzel - Key West, Florida
Kate Stevens - Shelburne Falls, Massachusetts
Jacquie Talbott - Cleveland Heights, Ohio
Michael Warsh - Burnaby, British Columbia
Tim Zorach - Corralitos, California

The group includes a contingent organized in partnership with the Kirkridge Retreat and Study Center.

Interfaith Peace-Builders believes in the power of eye-witness experience and transformation. Given the opportunity to speak directly with Israelis and Palestinians, delegates return to the United States better informed, more energized, and with a deeper understanding of the possibilities for true justice in the Middle East.

Upon their return to the United States in November, delegates will share their experiences with the public, the media, and their political representatives.

Media interested in interviewing the participants when they return, and groups wanting information about speaking engagements, should contact the San Francisco office of Interfaith Peace-Builders at or 415.240.4607.


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