James Grant-Rosenhead is a founding member of Kibbutz Mishol - the biggest urban kibbutz in Israel.
James was born in Leeds, England, in 1974. He became active as a Jewish Zionist youth leader with Habonim Dror (HDUK) in 1990 after his first visit to Israel. From 1992-3, James spent a year of leadership training in Israel, then returned and directed local branches of the youth movement around London until 1996. He completed his LL.B (Hons) Law degree in 1996, then served as HDUK national secretary until 1998. Concerned for the future of the Jewish world and Israel, and inspired by the first urban kibbutzim, James made aliyah to Jerusalem in 1999 with Kvutzat Yovel, the first Anglo olim to build a thriving urban kibbutz. From 1999-2010 James led a worldwide transformation and renewal of Habonim Dror programs, education and ideology from their traditional kibbutz bases to social activist urban educator kvutzot. The result is a new adult movement of urban kibbutzim in Israel, including olim from around the world, as well as a global revival of the Habonim Dror youth movement.
From 2010-2015, James served as the Joint CEO of ‘Tikkun - A Center for Gathering, Education and Social Change’ (NGO), building HaMachanot HaOlim educators’ kibbutzim in the socio-economic and geographic peripheries, and became a founder of ‘M.A.K.O.M.’ - the National Council of Mission Driven Communities in Israel. From 2015-2017 James was an Israeli Emissary through the Jewish Agency for Israel and the World Zionist Organization, serving as the Habonim Dror North America central shaliach based in New York. In parallel, James was also a mentor for Hazon’s ‘Hakhel’ Jewish Intentional Communities Incubator and a mentor for Hillel International’s Ezra Fellowship. Since 2019, James has been in the central leadership teams running Kibbutz Mishol.
James lives in Kibbutz Mishol in Nazareth Illit with his wife and 3 daughters.