This morning was magical.

I went to an OurCrowd special Passover breakfast gathering at the Waldorf Astoria in Jerusalem.

Above:  OurCrowd’s Jon Medved delivers a fact-filled, impassioned story about Israel’s startup and innovation economy.  The impact of Asia, the continued increase in new R&D centers, what it means to have no less that ten- $1 billion exits, and a some other great insights.  The video is 12 minutes.  Please watch and inspire others to learn….

We got a sneak peak at the latest in Israeli technology, a look at two new companies, and a whole lot more….

  • ElMindA CEO Ronen Gadot, creator of the ground-breaking Brain Network Activation technology, shared his company’s innovative approach to neuroscience and management of brain disorders.
  • Syqe CEO Perry Davidson revealed the future of medical cannibis with a a 3D Printed, WiFi enabled medical marijuana inhaler.
  • The latest in Adtech Technology was on display via BIScience, competitive intelligence for the $140B digital advertising market.
  • Keynote speaker Dr. Tal Becker, Principal Deputy Legal Advisor at the Israeli Ministry of Foreign Affairs, gave deep insight into questions surrounding the Iranian nuclear threat and the future of Israel U.S. relations.
  • The breakfast convened with a call to action to support Israeli non- profit, Toldot Yisrael, which is documenting Israel’s 1948 generation, the founding fathers of the Jewish Homeland.

On a personal note, I crossed paths with a gentleman in 70’s who had just moved to Israel. He and his son were at the same table where I sat, and they told me that they were involved in OurCrowd as a way to invest in cool companies from here.

I met a couple from Oakland who also keep a residence just outside of Jerusalem.  They were here for the Passover holiday visiting friends, family, and yes, taking care of business.

All my life I was raised to invest in one form or another Israel.

As children, we did it by planting trees, buying Israel Bonds for our friends’ Bar and Bat Mitzvahs, and being involved in the JNF – Jewish National Fund.  As we grew up, we also had some form of involvement in our  local Jewish Federations in Dallas where I grew up.   I even made a trip to Cuba with Jewish Federation of San Antonio, where I am based, seven years ago.

Even though I have been to several OurCrowd events, and I have covered the evolution of Jon Medved’s vision over the last two years, this event was… well it was just different.

It was different because it was a crossroads of people from all walks of life, from all over the planet, who came here with a sense of higher purpose.

Sure, this is business and all, but my sense is that everyone in the ballroom who gathered this morning at the Waldorf Astoria were not just looking for great investment opportunities, but to invest in companies that are helping to advance humanity.

Now let’s mosey on over to Austin, Texas for a spell…

During the breakfast, I was thinking about about having the chance to spend some time with OurCrowd’s Zack Miller, Head of Investor Community/Partnerships and Leah Stern, who is building the narrative for the company as its Chief Story Teller, during the SXSW Interactive Festive four weeks ago.  (Zack was a speaker at SXSW. You may view his talk here.)

Over some wonderful BarBQue at the County Line, and really awesome Tex Mex at Chuey’s, walking the trade show floor, and walks up and down 6th Street for some serious people watching, Zack and Leah both shared the evolution of their own roles in the company.

Leah is a masterful journalist.  If you watch her in action at an OurCrowd event, she’ll always have a camera or video equipment in hand.

Zack shared the news about his launching a free angel investing course that comes to you in 8 short emails with powerful links.  I love it and have gained new insights and tips from it.  I highly suggest you sign up, learn and profit from it. Click here to sign up.  P.S. My favorite link – 40 Epic Resources for Investing in Startups.

In recent weeks OurCrowd also launched their Education Center, available here. Dozens of articles, webinars, interviews and more are available to enrich your investment experience and deepen your knowledge. Content can be filtered by topic and media type, making it easily navigable according to your preferences.

In my view, OurCrowd is evolving beyond simply being a way to invest in and leverage the power of the crowd.   They have created a unique franchise and breaking ground in a new form of venture capital.

Finally in the spirit of Passover, I want to share a wonderful piece of educational investing from Zack Lessons from Passover, the Four Sons of Angel Investing,.”  

Sure it’s the last day of the holiday, but given that we’ve been doing this for several thousand years, Zack’s words of wisdom apply now, and into the future.

And what a great future we have ahead of us, indeed.