Israel was born in the Mayan village of San Antonio in the southern part of the Cayo District in Belize. Yucatec Maya is his native language, though he also speaks English, Spanish, Creole and Mopan Maya. As a child Israel was in constant contact with nature, and he derives great delight in sharing this lifelong passion with visitors to his native country. Israel's enthusiasm for tourism has led him into continuing levels of higher education in the fields of natural history and ecosystems of Belize, bird anatomy and physiology with Massachusetts Audubon, and Mayan archeology, which he studied with Dr. Arlene Chase of the University of Central Florida. As a tour guide in his Belizean homeland for more than 15 years, Israel leads natural history tours, multi-sport tours (mountain biking, kayaking and jungle trekking), and birding tours. As an active member of a tour guide association in Belize, Israel spends his free time exploring local regions with fellow tour guides, and mountain biking.