Al Teich Takes the Helm: First President of the AFBSF Board

“Although I’m not a scientist, per se, I’ve spent my whole career around science – it’s been an interest since I was very young and it’s an important part of my life.  My undergraduate degree is in physics and my PhD is in political science, with a strong focus on the relations of science, government and society,” said Albert H. Teich, researcher, science and technology policy expert and noted author.  Al was elected president of the Friends of the United States-Israel Binational Science Foundation (AFBSF) in April 2012 and sees his new role as an exciting challenge.

Photo taken by Al Teich while in IsraelAl was a natural candidate to see the new AFBSF through its beginning phases as a charitable organization.  He is an active member of the Board of Governors of the U.S.-Israel Binational Science Foundation (BSF).  In that capacity, he worked closely with fundraising professional Gary A. Leo (now Executive Director of AFBSF) as together they raised funds for the BSF.

Said Al with a chuckle, “At the end of last year I retired as director of Science and Policy Programs at the American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS) in Washington, DC.  I have been perhaps busier this year than ever before.  Besides my commitment to the AFBSF, I also serve as Research Professor of Science, Technology and International Affairs in the Elliott School of George Washington University and am now studying how U.S. visa policies for foreign scientists, engineers and students are affecting American science and technological competitiveness.”

He continued, “My professional career in the non-profit sector has prepared me for the effort ahead at the AFBSF.  I plan to work side by side with each board member as we seek gifts from individuals and foundations.  I believe deeply in the goals of the AFBSF and I hope my faith in the organization will inspire donors to join us in our efforts.  Even in this challenging economic environment I am confident that we will be successful raising private sector funds to increase the critical research supported by the BSF.”

Al grew up in a Zionist household.  His mother took her first trip to Israel (Palestine at the time) in 1930, when she was a young Polish woman in her 20s.  His father, who grew up in Austro-Hungary, was involved in organizations that supported Israel and fulfilled a life-long dream when he finally had an opportunity to visit Israel two years before he died.  “So,” mused Al, “helping to foster collaboration between Israeli and American scientists and strengthening science in both countries is a role that is almost custom-made for me.”

Husband, father and grandfather, Al is an avid swimmer, a serious amateur photographer, and a frequent traveler.  He looks forward to building a loyal and generous cadre of donors who understand the value of the BSF and its collaborative scientific exploration melding the enormous talent of researchers in Israel and the United States.

Learn more about Al Teich