By Rebecca Davis
Feature article in the Australian Jewish News
March 3, 2020
NSW Jewish Board of Deputies CEO | Husband | Father | Grandfather
Q: What was the last book you read?
With All Due Respect by former US ambassador to the UN Nikki Haley. Three points struck me. First, she is an exceptionally articulate individual whose worldview is informed by the racism she endured as a Sikh child growing up in a part of the US where her skin colour was held against her. Second, she managed to navigate between representing her country in the toxic forum of the UN while at the same time distancing herself from her boss, the President, at critical moments. Finally, the book is an eloquent summation of her position on key issues and could well be the first shot in her campaign to run for the Oval Office in 2024. A worthwhile read by a forceful character.
Q: What is your ultimate holiday destination?
Rhodes Island. Apart from the fact that it is a magnificent island, it’s the epicentre of my family’s story. We were expelled from Spain by the Inquisition and lived on Rhodes for almost 500 years. The Jewish community was decimated in the Holocaust, when 1673 Jews were deported to Auschwitz, where the majority – including 151 Alhadeffs, including my paternal grandparents – were murdered. In a remarkable twist, my father was told his fiancée had perished and she believed he had perished. Fast-forward half-a-century; my father overheard his fiancée’s name; she had survived and was a grandmother living in Brussels and he a grand-father living in Johannesburg.