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Dr. Haim Shaked

In September 1998, the University of Miami announced the creation of the Sue and Leonard Miller Center for Contemporary Judaic Studies and appointed Dr. Haim Shaked as its Founding Director. Dr. Shaked has also served, since 1986, as the Director of the Middle East Studies Institute and is the incumbent of the Dr. M. Lee Pearce Chair in Middle East Peace Studies. Since 1995, Dr. Shaked has been involved in the creation of the first private (not-for-profit) university in Israel: The Interdisciplinary Center, Herzliyya.

Haim Shaked was born in Tel Aviv, Israel (1939). He was educated at the Hebrew University of Jerusalem, where he graduated with a B.A. Cum Laude (1962) and an M.A. Cum Laude (1966) in Middle Eastern and Islamic Studies. In 1969 he was awarded a Ph.D. by the University of Londonís School of Oriental and African Studies (SOAS), on completion of his studies in its Department of History, chaired then by Professor Bernard Lewis.

From 1969-1998, Dr. Shaked was on the faculty of Tel Aviv University where he attained the rank of Full Professor (tenured). He was a co-founder and later (1973-80) Head of the Moshe Dayan Center/Shiloah Institute for Middle Eastern and African Studies. He also served at Tel Aviv University as Dean of the Faculty of Humanities and member of the Board of Trustees and its Executive Committee (1975-80). He took early retirement from the University in Summer, 1998.

From 1981-1983, Dr. Shaked was Interim Director of the Center for Advanced International Studies at the University of Miami, with a mandate to develop it into a Graduate School of International Studies. In 1998 it became the School of International Studies and then, in 2001, the Department of International Studies in the UMís College of Arts and Sciences.

Professor Shakedís academic specialization is in the modern history and politics of the Middle East, Islam as a political force, and Arab-Israeli relations. He was the co-founder and editor of the annual publication Middle East Contemporary Survey (24 volumes published to date). In addition, he founded and edited the first fully computerized, comprehensive bibliography on the Middle East, Mideast File. He has also authored and edited several books and numerous articles about the Middle East.

For over three decades, Haim Shaked has been invited to participate as keynote speaker, lecturer or scholar-in-residence at classes, seminars, panels, lecture series, briefings, colloquia symposia and conferences on the Middle East held in Israel, England, Canada, Mexico, India, Australia, Germany, France, Italy, Greece, Jordan, Puerto Rico and the United States. Professor Shaked has also served as a consultant on the Middle East to private and governmental bodies.

Maxine E. Schwartz

Since April, 1992, Maxine Schwartz has worked with Professor Haim Shaked, first in the Middle East Studies Institute (MESI) of the University of Miami's Graduate School of International Studies and now, since its creation in 1998, at the Sue and Leonard Miller Center for Contemporary Judaic Studies with the title of Director of Development and Outreach. Her responsibilities include fund-raising in all its aspects; planning and budgeting operations; outreach programming such as named lectures, symposia, conferences and partnership programs with other agencies and the editing of materials published and disseminated by the Center. She works closely with Professor Shaked in in all aspects of the Centerís activities.

From 1988 to 1990, Maxine served as the General Campaign Chairman of the Greater Miami Jewish Federation, the first woman to do so in the Federation's fifty year history and the first woman to chair a campaign in a major Jewish community. During her two year tenure as General Chair, over $40,000,000 was raised. She also convinced the Federationís Board of Directors to mount their first mega-mission to Israel, filling two chartered 747 jets in May,1990. Since then, she and her husband, Kenneth Schwartz, have led two additional mega-missions one in October, 1991, and another in November, 1998 - taking over 2000 people to Israel. From 2001-2006, she has been part of a 3 man/1-woman team organizing and leading Solidarity Missions to Israel every January. In May, 2008, she led the Federationís Sixtieth Anniversary Mission. In all, Maxine has lead over 20 missions for the Greater Miami Jewish Federation.

Maxine served as an officer of the Greater Miami Jewish Federation from 1984-94. In 1982, she was appointed to the Federationís Executive Committee, on which she still serves. In 2009, she was elected as a Life Member of the Federationís Board of Trustees. She has served in both the General Campaign and the Women's Division in many leadership positions. In the Womenís Department she served as Campaign Chair (1976-78) and President (1980-82). In the General Campaign, in addition to her service as General Campaign Chair, Major Gifts Chair and Mega Mission Chair. She was the first General Super Sunday Chair, the first Shabbat Across Miami Chair and the only Operation Moses Chair. In 2002, she chaired 70 parlor meetings as part of the Israel Emergency Campaign in which Miami raised an additional $13,000,000 within 7 weeks. In 2007, she co-chaired the Israel Emergency Campaign which raised over $10,000,000 in 6 weeks.

In 1976. the Greater Miami Jewish Federation awarded her the Stanley C. Myers Award, given for outstanding young leadership and in May of 2009, she was elected as a Life Member of the Federations Board of Directors in recognition of her many years of service.

Nationally, Maxine served for 12 years (1983-95) as a member with various portfolios of the National United Jewish Appeal's Women's Campaign,including National Lion of Judah Chair (gifts in excess of $5,000 per year), National Education Chair and National Training Chair.

In March, 2004, Maxine was honored by the Friends of the Israel Defense Forces for her outstanding work on behalf of the Jewish people.

Maxine was Miamiís 2010 Kipnis-Wilson Friedland Award recipient, ďgiven every two years to extraordinary women who have set a high standard for philanthropy and volunteerism. These women have been chosen by their communities as ďwomen of valorĒ with lifetimes of commitment to the Jewish world.Ē (GMJF newsletter)

Maxine attended Cornell University and received a B.A. from Barnard College in October, 1959. She is married to Kenneth and they have 6 children and 7 grandchildren.

Adriana Cassinera

Adriana Cassinera brings to the Center over 15 years of experience in highly demanding professional environments. Her extensive background in office administration and computer systems is of great value to the Center.

Adriana served for 5 years as a volunteer in the public school system where she worked with children with reading disabilities, providing individualized tutorial assistance. She went on to develop a full learning program for children with special needs at a local elementary school and headed fundraising activities to provide financial assistance for the program. Her commitment to helping children is further demonstrated as Adriana became an active member of the National Congress of Parents and Teachers, Dade County Council PTA and was elected vice president and subsequently president for two consecutive years.

Born in Argentina, Adriana has been a resident of Miami since 1978, she is married to Carlos Cassinera and has three children.

Adriana manages the affairs of the Sue and Leonard Miller Center for Contemporary Judaic Studies. She acts as the assistant to the Director of the Miller Center and Feldenkreis Program in Judaic Studies. Serves as liaison with all the UM departments, faculty, deans, students, donors and general public. Adriana handles the Centerís financial administration and human resources as well as major public relations tasks and the coordination of public events.

Mitch Dabach

Mitch Dabach was named as the Executive Assistant to the Director of the Sue and Leonard Miller Center for Contemporary Judaic Studies at its inception in 1998. Previously, he served from 1990-1998 as the Associate Director of the Middle East Studies Institute (under the directorship of Dr. Haim Shaked) of the School of International Studies, University of Miami. During the 1988 U.S. Presidential campaign, Mr. Dabach was the Executive Director of the Florida Jewish Campaign Committee. From 1985-1987, he was the Assistant Area Director for the American Jewish Committee in Miami, Florida.

Mitch Dabach pursued his undergraduate studies at the Hebrew University of Jerusalem, Israel in the Departments of International Relations and the History of Muslim Countries. He is fluent in Hebrew and semi-fluent in Arabic.