The Board of Trustees unanimously elected Prof. Arie Zaban as Bar-Ilan University’s next President. Prof. Zaban will assume the presidency in October 2017 when outgoing President Rabbi Prof. Daniel Hershkowitz completes his term of office. Veteran BIU trustees Jane Stern Lebell and Romie Tager were elected Vice Chairpersons of the Board of Trustees.
Born in 1961 Prof. Zaban served in the Israel Air Force as a Phantom pilot in the early 1980s before going on to earn a BSc in Chemistry (summa cum laude) and a PhD in Electrochemistry (with highest distinction) from Bar-Ilan University. Following his post-doctoral studies at the National Alternative Energy Laboratory in Denver, Colorado, Zaban returned to Bar-Ilan as a senior lecturer and served as founding director of the Bar-Ilan Institute of Nanotechnology and Advanced Materials (BINA). He is currently the BIU Vice President for Research.
Prof. Zaban has published hundreds of articles in leading scientific journals and has garnered numerous awards for his scientific achievements. His research, mainly in the field of energy, has brought about the establishment of four start-up companies implementing eight of the patents he developed.
“The academic world is changing both in terms of teaching and research, and we at Bar-Ilan view this change as a historic opportunity to advance to the forefront of academia on all levels,” said Zaban upon being appointed president. Prof. Zaban thanked outgoing President Hershkowitz for his contribution to the university.
Board Tribute to President Hershkowitz
During a special Board tribute to President Hershkowitz, moderated by BOT Honorary Chairman Dr. Mordecai D. Katz, farewell remarks were made by both the Chairman of the Council of Trustees Dr. Lipa Meir and longtime BIU trustee Dr. David Jeselsohn. Dina Berniker read an original Hebrew poem, and a unique gift – the “Jerusalem Cube” giving expression to the face of Jerusalem in antiquity as well as in contemporary times – was presented to the President (pictured on right) by Alan Zekelman and Prof. Izak Yohai.
Officiating at his first Board meetings, BOT Chairman Michael Jesselson (left, below) welcomed into the ranks two newly elected Vice Chairpersons: Jane Stern Lebell, who has long been active in the Bar-Ilan community serving as Honorary President of the AFBIU and in many different leadership positions over the years; and Romie Tager, Chairman of the British Friends.
to Prof. Yaakov Neeman
During the plenary sessions, a special memorial tribute was held for the late Prof. Yaakov Neeman, former Israeli Justice and Finance Minister who served for many years as Chairman of Bar-Ilan University’s Board of Trustees Executive Council. In 1998 Bar-Ilan University awarded an honorary doctorate to Prof. Neeman for his unique contributions to Israeli society, and in appreciation of his vigorous efforts to maintain and promote Jewish unity, and in strengthening Israel-Diaspora relations.
The tribute was led by past Council of Trustee Chairman and mentee of Prof. Neeman, Dr. Joshua Rosensweig, who spoke of Bar-Ilan’s profound gratitude to Yaakov Neeman “for a lifetime of devotion and action on our behalf: as a founder of the Faculty of Law, as a professor who taught there, as a legal scholar ….as a lawyer who offered counsel, as a government representative who supported university studies, as a forceful and beloved chairman who succeeded in bringing about necessary transformative changes at Bar-Ilan – in all of these roles, he was dedicated to the wellbeing and prosperous future of the university.”