joannwebsitepicJo-Ann Mort, the founder and CEO, has a diverse strategic  communications background in philanthropy, the Jewish community, electoral and progressive politics and elsewhere. She founded ChangeCommunications  in 2006.

Among ChangeCommunications clients are, or have been, the Union for Reform Judaism, Physicians for Human Rights Israel,  the American Federation of Teachers, Service Employees International Foundation, the Charles and Lynn Schusterman Foundation,Tel-Hai College in Israel, Appleseeds Academy (Tapuach) Israel, Rawabi (a new Palestinian city) and Rawabi Foundation, Paltel Foundation, the Jerusalem Season of Culture, Congregation Beit Simchat Torah, the Wohl Foundation, the Carnegie Corporation, the Ford Foundation, and more.

Jo-Ann was a special advisor to the president of the Union for Reform Judaism and the director of communications for the Jewish Funders Network. She created and directed the Communications Department for the U.S. Programs of the Open Society Institute, now the Open Society Foundations of the Soros foundations network, where she oversaw the communications and public education work and assisted grantees in their communications work. Prior to that, Jo-Ann was director of communications and an advisor to the president at UNITE Union and the Amalgamated Clothing and Textile Workers Union for 13 years, the predecessor unions to Workers United, an affiliate of SEIU.

As associate director of communications for the American Jewish Congress in the early 1980s, she was also the founding director of the Women’s Commission, working with prominent feminist leaders in the U.S. and Israel including Betty Friedan,  Bella Abzug, Alice Shalvi and others to promote global women’s rights and to engage issues of anti-Semitism and anti-Zionism in the global UN arena and elsewhere.

Jo-Ann was the director of the Democratic Agenda project, which promoted a progressive social and economic agenda inside the Democratic Party and was founded by noted social activist Michael Harrington (author of The Other America).  Background also includes press secretary for Carl McCall’s campaign for New York State Lt. Governor, and senior staffer for two members of the New York State Assembly. She also worked in communications and publicity for Sarah Lawrence College and Farrar, Straus & Giroux publishers.

As a freelance journalist, Jo-Ann brings a particularly acute lens to work with journalists and editors. She is especially known for her writing and analysis about Israeli domestic life and Palestinians, and has reported from Israel, the West Bank and Gaza for the Chicago Tribune, the Forward newspaper, The American Prospect, the LA Weekly, the Los Angeles Times, JTA, Foreign Policy magazine and more. More recently, her reporting and analysis has included Poland, for Foreign Policy magazine and Dissent magazine. A frequent contributor to national newspapers and magazines in the U.S., U.K. and Israel, Jo-Ann was also a regular contributor to, one of the most trafficked and well-regarded political blog sites on the web. She is a member of the editorial board of Dissent magazine.

The co-author of Our Hearts Invented a Place: Can Kibbutzim Survive in Today’s Israel? (Cornell University Press) and editor of Not Your Father’s Union Movement: Inside the New AFL-CIO (Verso) and a contributor to numerous publications and anthologies, she has spoken widely at universities and in public forums in the U.S., Israel and Europe, for the Israel Women’s Network, the Socialist Group of the European Parliament, the Central European University Jewish Studies’ program, and more.

A resident of Park Slope, Brooklyn, Jo-Ann is a member of the board of Americans for Peace Now and a member of the committee on Israeli economic development of the Jewish Peoplehood Commission of UJA Federation of New York. She is also an advisor to the Sarah Lawrence College Hillel. She is a former trustee of Congregation Beth Elohim and remains active in the congregation. She is also active in the NY UJA Federation in commitee work that promotes and supports minority populations and marginalized populations in Israel.

She is a graduate of Sarah Lawrence College where she studied poetry writing, literature, and philosophy. For her poetry publications and background, go to