Grapevine: TAU chairman

An assortment of this week's Israel news that escaped your radar.

Jacob A. Frenkel, 2007 (photo credit: SHACHAR AZVAN/WIKIMEDIA)
Jacob A. Frenkel, 2007
■ TEL AVIV University’s board of governors elected Prof.Yaakov Frenkel to serve a second term as its chairman. The vote by a significant majority was on the recommendation of the search committee headed by Prof. Haim Ben Shachar.
Frenkel, a former governor of the Bank of Israel and an Israel Prize laureate in the field of economics, currently chairs JP Morgan Chase International and the G-30 Board of Trustees.
Frenkel noted that he would continue to work toward enhancing TAU’s global reputation as a leading academic institution.
■ THE TECHNION Alumni Association is holding a reunion – not in Haifa where members gained the qualifications for their various professions, but at Trask on the Tel Aviv Port.
The date is Friday, June 23 at 10 a.m. Participants will partake of a sumptuous breakfast on the patio overlooking the sea.
One of the commendable activities of the Technion alumni is the provision of scholarships for talented youngsters who may not have the financial means to attend the Technion and realize their potential. The alumni will be awarding such scholarships at the reunion.
Participants will be entertained by Sandra Sadeh in a scene from Madame Bovary; poetry by Nurit Zarchi; a recital by Leonid Patashka, named by Cambridge University as top keyboardist; and a stand-up comedy routine by Adir Miller. Further information: (04) 829-3710.
■ A SPECIAL screening of the documentary Remembering Dr. Melvile Edelstein – the Life and Death of a Good Man, written and produced by Kevin Harris, will take place on Thursday, June 15 at 7 p.m. at Beit Hatfutsot – The Museum of the Jewish People on the TAU campus.
On June 16, 1976, Melville Edelstein, a sociologist who preached against apartheid education, was brutally murdered by a crowd of enraged students on the first day of the Soweto Uprising in South Africa. Edelstein was a victim of a system that socialized South Africans to judge one another on the basis of skin color. Edelstein was stoned to death by a mob who did not know of his anti-apartheid work; he was killed simply because he was a white official in the wrong place at the wrong time. Edelstein was a practicing Orthodox Jew who was a pacifist and dedicated to serving the good of mankind. The documentary has been broadcast on South African television.
To register: (03) 745-7915.
■ BAR ILAN University physics Prof. Shlomo Havlin has been awarded the Order of the Star of Italy, one of Italy’s highest civilian honors. It was presented to him by Italian Ambassador Francesco Maria Talo, who explained that it is conferred upon those who have acquired special merit in the promotion of friendly relations and cooperation between Italy and other countries.
Talo attributed Havlin’s success to his ability to “not only to understand science, but also to make others understand his own discoveries; not only to write scientific papers but also for them to be readable by others.” The strength of Havlin’s international collaborations is underscored by the fact that he is the second most cited Israeli scientist ever (with an h-index ranking of 119, with close to 70,000 citations in total).
In thanking the ambassador, Havlin credited his success to the large number of students and collaborators, who brought forward his line of research and spread his scientific methods. He made particular mention of some of his former students, such as Prof. Reuven Cohen, Dr.
Ronny Bartsch and Dr. Amir Bashan, who are now BIU faculty members in the departments of mathematics and physics, as well as current members of his group, including Italian citizen Ivan Bonamassa, who is enrolled in BIU doctoral studies.