Israel’s expanding international presence and its opportunities

Major. Gen (Ret) Matan Vilnai, Former Ambassador to China, Former Israeli Government Minister and
Member of Knesset



About the speaker:

Matan Vilnai is an Israeli politician and the former Israeli Ambassador to China, and a Major-General (Ret.) in the Israel Defense Forces.

Vilnai was born on May 20, 1944 in Jerusalem during the British Mandate of Palestine. In 1966, Vilnai was drafted into the Israel Defense Forces where he would begin a long and distinguished military career, serving in the Sayeret Matkal, the special forces unit of the Israeli infantry corps.

During the Yom Kippur War, Vilnai was commander of a task force in the Sinai Peninsula and, in July 1976, he was tasked as the deputy commander for the Entebbe rescue mission, Operation Thunderbolt. Promoted to the rank of Major General in 1994, Vilnai served as Deputy Chief of the General Staff for three years following which he retired from the IDF.Vilnai earned a Bachelor's Degree in History from Tel Aviv University and in 1998, for the year after his retirement, he served as a fellow at the Johns Hopkins University in Washington, DC.

First elected to the Knesset in 1999, Vilnai served as an MK and a Chairman of key Knesset Committees and in Government positions. In January 2005, he was appointed Minister in the Prime Minister's Office; in August 2005, Acting Minister of Science and Technology; and in November 2005, Minister of Science and Technology. From July 2007 until March 2009, Vilnai served as Deputy Minister of Defense and in April 2009 he was reappointed Deputy Minister of Defense in the newly elected government of Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu. In January 2011, he was appointed Minister for Home Front Defense, a position he held until August 2012 when he left Israel to serve as Ambassador to China.

He is married and the father of three and grandfather of three.


Event Details

Event date: 10-23-2019
Event End Date: 10-23-2019
Cut off date 10-23-2019
Individual Price Free
Time 6:30PM - Networking Reception
7:00PM - Introduction by Inon Elroy, Economic Minister to North America, Ministry of Economy and Industry, Israel
7:05pm - Presentation and Q&A
Location Mayer Brown LLP
1221 Avenue of the Americas - 14th Floor
New York, NY 10020
Event Language Event will be conducted in English
Event registration is closed
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