Ben-Gurion Day to honour Jewish state’s founding father, host of Israeli achievers

November 9, 2021 by JNS
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The Ben-Gurion University of the Negev will commemorate Ben-Gurion Day on Nov. 10 with an awards ceremony attended by Israeli President Isaac Herzog on the BGU Marcus Family Campus.

The graves of first Israeli Prime Minister David Ben-Gurion, and his wife, Paula, near their residence in Sde Boker in the Negev Desert.                                                                Credit: David Shankbone/Wikimedia Commons

On the same day, Americans for Ben-Gurion University will host an interactive virtual tour of David and Paula Ben-Gurion’s retirement home in Sde Boker in the Negev Desert.

The day is an Israeli national holiday that celebrates the life and vision of Israel’s founding father and first prime minister, David Ben-Gurion.

Before the live virtual tour, BGU’s annual Ben-Gurion Awards will be presented to 10 Israelis, including alumni from government, industry, education and Beersheva Theatre.

Herzog will also be briefed about BGU’s Chaim Herzog Center for Middle East Studies and Diplomacy, named after his late father and former Israel president.

Those receiving awards include Dr. Efrat Bron-Harlev, CEO of Schneider Children’s Medical Center of Israel; Adv. Mina Kalman-Haddad, a member of the Beersheva city council, head of the Volunteering Department and founder of the Gesher movement; Reda Masarwa, vice president of Fab Construction Engineering of the Intel Corporation; former Knesset member Shuli Moalem-Refaeli, an educator and advocate for Israel Defence Forces’ widows and orphans; Yosef Mizrah, professor emeritus in the life-sciences department who imported and adapted exotic fruit trees to Israel’s climates; Professor Bracha Rager, former chief scientist of the Israel Health Ministry, one of the founders the Faculty of Health Sciences and a noted measles researcher from the department of microbiology and immunology; Dr. Ron Sabar, founder of Sabar Health-Home Hospital, the largest home hospital service in Israel; and Maj. Gen. (res.) Amos Yadlin, former head of IDF Military Intelligence and a decorated fighter pilot.

The late Gabriel Tamman, a benefactor of educational initiatives in Israel and abroad, will also be honored, and one of the university’s gates is to be renamed in his memory.

The Beersheva Theatre was founded in 1973. CEO Shmulik Yifrach will accept the prize on its behalf.

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