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    8 Israelis Who Made Us Proud In 2014

    Welcome, world - Israeli Vibe is on Buzzfeed! We're kicking off our channel and the new year with this awesome list of Israelis from 2014. With such a fantastic year behind us, who knows what great achievements 2015 will bring?

    1. Gal Gadot: Wonder Woman

    Warner Bros

    2014 was a great year for Israeli model and actress Gal Gadot, who was told she would be playing the role of Wonder Woman in the upcoming Batman vs. Superman movie. Gadot served for two years in the Israel Defense Forces, has a passion for motorcycles, and lives in Gan Hahashmal, ranked by Thrillist as the world's second sexiest neighborhood. We can definitely see why!

    2. David Blatt: Basketball Wizard

    In May, Maccabi Tel Aviv basketball coach David Blatt led Israel to victory in the Euroleague final. Although labelled as the underdog, his team came from behind and claimed the championship against Real Madrid! For his Euroleague win, Blatt was named the the competition’s Coach of the Year. After his sensational triumph on behalf of Israel, it’s no surprise that the NBA hired him to be the head coach of the Cleveland Cavaliers.

    3. Nof Atamna-Ismaeel: Master Chef

    Facebook

    Last April, this amazing Israeli was crowned the winner of Master Chef, Israel’s top cooking show! Atamna-Ismaeel, an Arab-Israeli and mother of three with a PhD in microbiology, plans on using her prize money to open an Arab-Jewish cooking school. She says winning the 2014 competition was “the most exciting moment of her life.” We can’t wait to see what she accomplishes next year!

    4. Leslie Lobel: Deciphering Disease

    The outbreak of Ebola made 2014 a pretty tough year, but this awesome Israeli is dedicating his life to finding a cure. During the past year, Dr. Lobel has been doing incredible research focusing on survivors of the disease. His work has helped scientists better understand the epidemic and treat those suffering from it.

    5. Tarif Bader: Saving Syrian Lives

    Mitch Ginsburg/Times of Israel / Via timesofisrael.com

    As the chief medical officer of the IDF’s Northern Command, Colonel Dr. Tarif Bader oversees the military’s amazing life-saving efforts on the Syrian border. Under Dr. Bader’s command, Israeli soldiers have treated over 1,200 patients injured in the Syrian civil war. Bader, a member of Israel’s Druze minority, says he’s proud to help wounded Syrians brought into Israel. “I am honored to do this work, both as a physician and a citizen of Israel," he recently told the IDF website.

    6. Ester Rada: Diva of the Year

    In 2014, this Israeli singer rose to international fame when she released her awesome single “Life Happens.” The song even earned her a nomination for Best Israeli Act at the MTV Europe Music Awards. Ester, an Israeli of Ethiopian descent, describes her music as a "cross-cultural sound [and] a deep reflection of the Israeli-born Ethiopian's heritage." Her songs are a dynamic combination of Ethiopian jazz, funk, soul and R&B, containing mixed undertones of black grooves.

    7. Marta Weinstock-Rosin: Prized Physician

    The list wouldn’t be complete without at least one recipient of the prestigious Israel Prize. In 2014, one of the prizes went to the truly remarkable Marta Weinstock-Rosin – a holocaust survivor, Orthodox Jew and scientist who developed Rivastigmine, one of the most commonly-used treatments for Alzheimer’s and Parkinson’s. Even at age 80, Weinstock-Rosin is helping patients worldwide. She continues to perform medical trials used to develop new treatments for people with degenerative diseases.

    8. The Israeli Spirit: Swimmers with a Cause

    Size Doesn't Matter

    In 2014, this outstanding team of six Israelis broke the world record for longest relay swim! The team includes Udi Errell, Ori Sela, Oded Rahav, Ben Enosh, Luc Chetboun, and Doron Amosi, who swam from Cyprus to Israel in order to raise awareness for ocean pollution.

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