Ilan Wagner is the director of Onward Israel and the Unit for Educational Experiences in Israel of The Jewish Agency for Israel. He was born in the United States, where he was active as a youth in Young Judaea, participating in the Year Course program in 1980-1.
In 1986, Ilan moved to Israel, living until 2000 on kibbutz in the Arava Desert where he worked as a high school teacher and helped establish the Keren Kolot Seminar at Kibbutz Ketura. In 1996 he served as emissary sent from Israel to work with university age students on behalf of Hadassah. After returning to Israel, he joined The Jewish Agency for Israel, initially serving as the personal aide to the Director-General of the Department of Education and then assuming responsibility for The Agency’s global student agenda.
In 2004, he was sent once again to North America where he served as the Central Emissary for Hillel and helped create the campus based Israel Fellows program. In 2007, he relocated to New York as the North American representative of the Department of Education and Director of Makom in North America. In 2009, he returned to Israel and helped create the Onward Israel program in 2011, of which he is currently the director.
In 2014, he became the head of the Unit for Educational Experiences in Israel, focusing on creating policy and fostering initiatives in the field of experiences in Israel. He is married, with two children, and lives in Modiin. Important to note, he is an avid Boston Red Sox fan.