YLC Leadership

The YLC Board of Directors is made up of YLC members who stand out for their commitment to Seeds of Peace. They are the driving force behind the YLC’s schedule of events and programming. Over the years they have grown from like-minded colleagues working towards a common goal to become a close-knit group of friends.


Sana Amanat
Board Member

Sana Amanat first became involved in Seeds of Peace in 2011 when she joined the Peace Market host committee. She is a graduate from Barnard College at Columbia University and has worked in publishing for the last 9 years. She's currently an Editor at Marvel Entertainment, having developed content that has appeared in multiple media outlets including New York Times, CNN, and Reuters. She hopes one day people will start acting like real super heroes.

Zohar Benjelloun

Zohar Benjelloun
Board Member

Zohar Benjelloun started volunteering with Seeds of Peace in 2011, joining the music committee for the YLC’s annual Peace Market. She currently works for Tiffany & Co. as a management consultant, advising on the company's media and branding strategy. She has also worked at Cartier and more recently Optimedia, a media and consulting agency, also as a management consultant on various luxury accounts. Zohar grew up in Montreal and visits her family in Morocco every year. She graduated from the John Molson School of Business in 2010 with a degree in International Business. Her interests include dancing, singing, spinning and music.

Sabrina B

Sabrina Birnbaum
Board Member

Sabrina Birnbaum has been active in Seeds of Peace since joining the host committee for Stand Up for Peace in 2011 and supporting the Development Committee and the Décor Committee of the Peace Market. She was elected to the YLC Board in 2013. Sabrina is a native New Yorker who graduated from New York University and Parsons, The New School for Design. She is an interior designer focusing on residential and hospitality projects.


Samantha Bloom
Board Member

Samantha Bloom joined Seeds of Peace in 2006 as a member of the American Delegation to the Seeds of Peace International Camp in Maine. Since then, she and her siblings, also Seeds Delegates, have remained advocates for the organization. Samantha is an alumnus of the University of Pennsylvania and served as a White House intern in the Obama Administration after graduation. She currently works for a multinational investment banking firm in New York on initiatives that provide both business education to women entrepreneurs globally, and access to capital and management education to small business owners within the United States.

Tilakshani Dias

Thilakshani Dias
Board Member

Tilli Dias started working with Seeds of Peace as part of the 2012 Peace Market Host Committee. She is currently a Vice President in Equity Capital Markets at Morgan Stanley, focused on Latin American and US equity deal origination and execution. Tilli is from Sri Lanka, and has lived in New York since graduating from Brown University in 2005. She is a member of the Brown University Young Leadership Committee and volunteers at the Fifth Avenue Presbyterian Church Homeless Shelter. Tilli spends her free time exploring new cultures through food and travel, and learning about South Asian art.

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Jessie Erwin
Board Member

Jessie Erwin joined Seeds of Peace in 2002 as a member of the American Delegation. Since then, she has been involved in Seeds of Peace in various capacities and is thrilled to be a member of the YLC Board as of 2013. In addition to working in development at a nonprofit, Jessie is a part-time graduate student at Columbia. She enjoys frequent visits to her home state of Maine, music, traveling, reading, and spending time with family and friends.


Matt Freedman
Board Member

Matt Freedman joined the YLC Board in 2013 after attending the Peace Market and serving on the Stand up for Peace Host Committee. He grew up outside of Boston, graduated from Washington University in St. Louis in 2007 and received an MS in Finance from Boston College in 2008. Matt moved to New York in 2009 where he currently works at Novus Partners and lives on the Upper East Side with his wife, dog, and cat.

Adina H

Adina Herman
Board Member

Adina Herman first began working with Seeds of Peace in 2011 when she joined the Host Committee and the music sub-committee for the 2012 Peace Market. She became a member of the Young Leadership Committee in 2012 and co-chaired the 2013 Peace Market. Adina received a BS from the school of Industrial and Labor Relations at Cornell University and received a J.D. and certification in divorce mediation from the Benjamin N. Cardozo School of Law. She began her career working for a New York State Senator on local initiatives and the passage of statewide bills and is currently employed as a Senior Court Attorney for a New York State civil court Judge.

Matt Jung

Matt Jung
Board Member

Matt Jung started working with Seeds of Peace in 2011, joining the development committee for the YLC’s annual Peace Market.  He currently works as an investor and consultant in New York City, focusing on emerging specialty retail and fashion brands.  In the past, he worked for a number of finance firms including AEA Investors, Peter J. Solomon Company and Deustche Bank.  Matt grew up outside of Philadelphia and graduated from Georgetown University in 2003.  His interests include traveling, reading, food, yoga and Georgetown basketball.

Karen Karniol-Tambour

Karen Karniol-Tambour
Board Member

Born and raised in Israel, Karen Karniol-Tambour joined Seeds of Peace in 1999 as a member of the Israeli Delegation at the Seeds of Peace International Camp in Maine. She has been active in Seeds of Peace for over a decade, in both the Middle East and the US, and her involvement has included dialogue sessions, mentoring younger Seeds, speaking about the powerful potential Seeds of Peace offers for the future at forums ranging from CNN and Carnegie Hall to elementary school classrooms in poorer parts of Israel, and of course -- chairing the best annual fundraiser in NYC, the Peace Market, in 2009. Karen graduated magna cum laude from the Woodrow Wilson School at Princeton University in 2006, and since graduation has worked at a large global macro hedge fund based in Westport, CT.


Jenn Lishansky
Staff Liaison

Jenn Lishansky is the External Relations Manager for Seeds of Peace and the staff liaison for the YLC Board. She interned at Seeds of Peace in the Spring of 2010 before becoming a full time staff member in May 2011. Jenn has experience working with young people and teachers, creating curricula and lesson plans for teaching human rights, civic engagement, meditation, and leadership. She graduated from New York University with degrees in Religious Studies and Politics.


Ramy Nagy

Ramy Nagy is the Chairman of the Young Leadership Committee. He first got involved with Seeds of Peace as a "Seed" in 1998. The following year he became a Peer Counselor and was later selected as one of the organization’s goodwill Ambassadors in the Middle East.  Ramy joined the YLC of Seeds of Peace in 2010. He Co-Chaired the 2011 fundraiser "Standup for Peace" and the 2013 "Peace Market". He also led several YLC initiatives, including the YLC Online Network. He continues to lead the YLC Board and its initiatives to support Seeds of Peace. He also serves on a number of Board Committees, including the Communication and Development Committees. Ramy is the Creative Director and CEO of MADEO, a NYC digital creative firm that helps clients achieve impact by design through branding, communication and digital interactions. Ramy is a member of IXDA and the international Sandbox Network of entrepreneurs.  He is a graduate of Bard College, and serves on its Junior Committee for supporting the college's Music Festival.


Grishma Parekh
Board Member

Grishma Parekh joined the Seeds of Peace YLC Board in 2011. She has been closely involved with several events including Stand-Up for Peace and Peace Market. Grishma is currently a Principal at The Carlyle Group which she joined in 2007. She is responsible for deal origination, investment evaluation and execution and portfolio management. Prior to Carlyle, Grishma spent five years in the Leveraged Finance practice at J.P. Morgan Securities. Grishma is a member of the Board of Directors of Targus Group International and Combined Systems. Grishma received a BS from the Stern School of Business at New York University. Her interests include cooking, painting, traveling, dance, design and décor.

Uptin S

Uptin Saiidi
Board Member

Uptin Saiidi has been involved with Seeds of Peace since 2011 when he served on the Music Team and Host Committee for the Peace Market. He's currently co-chair of the Music Team for the 2013 Peace Market. He grew up on the West Coast and attended The George Washington University where he studied Finance, International Business, and Communications. He currently resides in New York City and works at MTV News. He loves the great outdoors, traveling and participating in half-marathons.

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Matthew Slovik
Board Member

Matthew Slovik has been involved with Seeds of Peace since 1994 and joined the Junior Board in September 2010. He graduated from Duke University in 2004 and currently works in Morgan Stanley's Global Sustainable Finance team, focusing on environmental finance. When not at work, Matthew can be found cooking eating, or playing outdoors with his dog, Rebel.

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Eric Tanner
Board Member

Eric Tanner first visited Seeds of Peace's International Camp in 2004 to participate in "sports day." After the visit he decided to apply and was accepted to be an American Seed in 2005. He returned in 2006 as a Peer Support Camper, interned in the New York City office in 2007 and was Programming Director at camp in 2010. A graduate from Dartmouth College, Eric worked at GE Capital and went on to found Tripwing, a travel website. He joined the board in 2012 and enjoys playing drums, skiing, golfing, and eating lobster rolls in Maine.

Jacob Toll

Jacob Toll
Chair of Executive Committee

Jacob Toll is Chairman of the Executive Committee for the Seeds of Peace Junior Board. After re-establishing the organization's Young leadership Committee through its main event, the Peace Market in 2008, Jacob broadened exposure to Seeds of Peace through additional smaller events and other outreach opportunities. When not focusing on development, he has served as the Waterfront Director at the Seeds of Peace International Camp in Maine. Before becoming a real estate developer in Brooklyn, he earned an MSW (Social Work) from New York University in 2008.


Hamza Usmani

Hamza Usmani attended the Seeds of Peace International Camp in 2003 as a member of the Pakistani delegation. Since then, he has been actively involved with Seeds of Peace through the South Asia program, the Graduate Seeds program, and the YLC. Based in New York City, Hamza is currently an Associate at private equity firm H.I.G. Capital. Prior to that, he was an Analyst at investment bank Jefferies & Company. He graduated from Middlebury College with a degree in Computer Science and Economics. Hamza founded Enlightened Pakistan, a small NGO primarily based in Pakistan, in 2007. Enlightened Pakistan has conducted projects focused on education and promoting tolerance in the society. Hamza is also a Strategy Adviser for Rabtt, another education focused, Seeds of Peace alumni run non-profit organization based in Pakistan.

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Matt Weinbaum
Board Member

Matt Weinbaum started working with Seeds of Peace in 2012, joining the Music Committee for the YLC’s Annual Peace Market. He is a corporate lawyer and investigator in New York City. Originally from Pittsburgh, Matt has degrees from the University of Michigan, the London School of Economics, and Case Western Reserve University. He is an avid participant in CrossFit and enjoys travelling, attending concerts, and playing basketball.