Though Benjamin Holzman has been active in social justice causes for ten years, formally studied or worked at six universities and has lived and worked in nine countries, he believes he is just getting started. He began his commitment to social change through his youth movement, Habonim Dror. Upon graduating from the University of New South Wales with a Bachelor of Arts in history and international development, he was selected as an AJWS World Partners Fellow, which took him to Mumbai, India, for six months of work experience in the developing world. After spending a year in Montreal, Canada, for further study at McGill University, he worked as a Project Manager for the Sydney Zionist Council, a multimedia journalist at The Australian Jewish News and as a Research Assistant at Melbourne University. More recently, he completed a master’s in urban policy and international development at LSE and worked for both Mitzvah Day International and Tzedek in London. In January, 2012, he moved to New York to establish a Moishe House in Brooklyn and has just embarked on an internship at the UN coordinating a global youth film festival about multiculturalism and migration.
Though Benji's work has been varied, it all converges around his three core mission areas: promoting diversity, building a more harmonious society and fostering a deep respect for "the other". Using the tools of education, advocacy, media and academics, he has managed to consistently work on inspiring projects that bring people together to create community and inspire cooperation. His project Pedalling For Peace, which saw a Jew, Muslim, Christian and a Bahai cycle over 1,000 km from Sydney to Melbourne to promote intercultural understanding, reached 500 students through educational programs and over 500,000 others through extensive media coverage. A documentary film he produced about the project was officially launched at NSW Parliament House and has screened in Australia, the U.K. and the U.S. Additionally, as a journalist and media producer he has made a film on tolerance toward homosexual public displays of affection and has published essays on marriage equality and photo essays on human rights issues in developing countries. He is currently organizing TEDxDUMBO.
He worked at the World Bank in Washington, DC from 2014 to 2016, where he launched an online course (MOOC) on Citizen Engagement and manages two online practitioner communities for the Parliamentary Strengthening team. He then worked as a multimedia producer at Harding Loevner for almost 3 years, before returning to the World Bank's Global Tax Team.