Lovie Malespin has been a Marksmanship Instructor in the Israel Defense Forces, a fitness trainer, and a model and sales rep for various firearms dealers around the world.
JF: Tell the readers about your background? How did your love of weaponry and your career in modeling come about? Did your parents raise you in a Zionist home? Talk about that a bit for our readers. What does it mean to be a Zionist today? What lessons did you learn growing up in Israel?
LM: I was born in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania USA! I was raised in Ohio up to the age of seven in a very Christian Zionist house that had a huge heart for Israel and the Jews. My dad is Jewish and he decided that were giving up on everything and moving to the Holy Land. When I came here I was exposed to soldiers walking around freely with their weapons, and it caught my eye. My older brothers also served in combat units and used to come home with their guns and tell us Army stories. I was hooked and knew I wanted to have a job serving in the IDF as a shooting instructor. When I finished the army a gun company contacted me and offered me to work for them as a gun model. Soon other gun companies also wanted to work with me and loved that my mother tongue is English- so I could promote them in other countries as well. A Zionist to me is not just living in Israel, its knowing and living the history of this land. It’s taking part in the holidays and the Sabbath, really understanding these people and what they’ve gone through and what we go through. Being a part of one big family and serving this country! I’ve learned a lot living here for almost 20 years. It’s not easy to get by and it is not easy to make money here- but there’s so much about this land that is worth staying and fighting for.
JF: What was your function in the Army? LM: I served for two years as a shooting instructor where every week I would be sent to different bases and different units to train them on their specific weapon.
JF: What were you interested in during high school? LM: In high school I majored in agroecology, sociology, and criminology. It was in high school that I was exposed to terrorist attacks, the mafia, and so on and it really interested me to get more deeply into their mindset.
JF: Have your interests changed as you get older? LM: Not really, it may sound boring but I really love what I do and I’ve noticed that I love the same things since I was a little girl! If it is music because I come from a musical family, and if it is sport because my siblings and I are all athletic. And of course if it is guns because I live in a country where you need to serve and you are exposed to it everywhere.
JF: What are your goals in 5 years and in 10 years? LM: This is a tough one because currently I’m a free soul. I do so many things at once and I just see where life takes me. I have some ideas but I’m not sure which direction to take 100%. In 5 years I would like to have a unique studio with my type of combat training in Israel, or move to America and do the same thing there plus work as a shooting instructor and a gun model. In 10 years I would like to be married and settled down in a Moshav in Israel with two beautiful kids! I have no idea what job I will have at that time. I’m hoping I’ll have my own business that will have to do with being a spokeswoman for Israel Fitness and coaching.
JF: Where is the most interesting place you have been and where do you still want to go? LM: Honestly Israel is the most interesting place I’ve been to! I love the ancient sites, the history, and the beautiful desert. The North of Israel and the culture make me fall in love with the land every single time. I’m still planning on traveling the world. Next on my list is Brazil, Colombia, Mexico and hopefully the Philippines.
JF: What do you love the most about living in Israel? LM: The people in Israel make me feel like I’m part of one big family, they have a very warm and welcoming culture. I love that about them. I feel free to be who I am, and do what I want without being fake. I’m absolutely in love with the food! It is so delicious and healthy. I can go on and on about Israel and how I love this country.
JF: Did you face obstacles in the Army because of your physical appearance? Particularly in a fairly “macho” Israeli culture which puts emphasis on the physical prowess of combat soldiers and fighters? LM: It was not easy training male combat soldiers as a shooting instructor. Sometimes I felt that I would have to be more strict to prove my position as their Commander. Most of the time I was treated very respectfully, and did not get into any uncomfortable situations. The soldiers honored me, and knew that they cannot mess around or else they would be severely punished.
JF: Have you had interactions with American Jewish women who grow up in a culture completely foreign to your experiences? What do they think about a Jewish woman who models and carries advanced assault rifles? LM: People from America and abroad are very surprised at my jobs and my experience with weapons. I always get the shocking questions about it! I think that everywhere in the world serving your country should be mandatory. Service is not just to “Die For Your Country”. It is a lifetime lesson that makes you so much more mature when you finish. You learn and experience things that day to day life won’t teach you. I’m very proud to be one that has served my country and am going to continue to encourage other women to do the same.
JF: What is the biggest misconception people have of you? LM: A lot of people think sometimes that I’m snobbish. Because when I’m walking around or minding to myself I think a lot. I am very serious about what I do and about my goals. From the outside I seem to be snobbish but when you approach me you will see that I am the most lovable, funny and happy person.
JF: What is one thing about you that very few of your Instagram fans would ever know? LM: I’m addicted to tahini! It’s an Israeli dressing, and everyone has to try it. I put it on literally everything. And even with all the outer appearance that I present in my social media or in day-to-day life, inside I’m a very sensitive girl.
Instagram and Facebook: Lovie Malespin