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AFTAU Connections: May 2018



Alibaba CEO Jack Ma Receives TAU Honorary Doctorate
His inspiring remarks describe Israel as a country that "never gives up." more


Koret Foundation TAU-Bay Area Collaborative Initiative Established
Dr. Anita Friedman looks to the future of collaboration on smart cities and bioinformatics. more


Why Diversity Programs Promoting Women and Minorities in Management Fail
Current tools that "force-feed" diversity engender bias and rebellion, TAU and Harvard University researchers say. more


Moderate Decline in Violent Attacks Against Jews, But Attacks Are Becoming More Brutal
European Jews harbor increasingly "grave concerns for their security," annual TAU Kantor Center study reports. more


Tel Aviv University Announces Early-Stage Venture Fund to Invest in Student Innovation
TAU Ventures similar to funds at universities such as MIT, UC Berkeley and Stanford. more


How Advanced Nanotechnology Can Improve Cancer Care
TAU, Harvard University researchers discuss untapped potential of targeted nanocarriers to revolutionize cancer therapy. more


Antidepressants May Prevent Hospitalization Relapses in Bipolar Depression Patients
Study finds apparent benefits of addition of adjunctive antidepressants to mood stabilizers, TAU researchers say. more


Koret Foundation Funds $10 Million Collaborative Initiative between TAU, Stanford University, and UC Berkeley
Grant designed to advance breakthroughs in medical and information technology. more


Eastern Mediterranean Summer Will be Two Months Longer by End of 21st Century
Climate changes will cut winter in the region by half, TAU researchers say. more


Having a Sibling Makes You More Empathetic, Study Finds
Younger and older siblings uniquely contribute to each other's development of empathy, TAU researchers say. more





Dear Friends,

I was walking around the TAU campus during the Board of Governors last week when I was struck by such a bolt of pride. There were so many new buildings ... and so many different kinds of people. Of course, there have always been people from the Middle East and Europe and North America. But now there's a huge Asian population, as well. I talked to some students who made it very clear that TAU is now an international destination for a first-rate education. I feel like a parent who watched my child go from being completely dependent to someone who is better educated and more globally savvy than me. Ouch!

TAU Board Chairman Prof. Jacob Frenkel did the best job of articulating this extraordinary growth. He talked about the '60s, when the university was basically a dirt patch ... and now it favorably compares with most American universities in size and stature. My own memories take me back to the '70s when the university had just gone through a growth spurt — with a few buildings and a dorm across the street from the campus.

But the change is more than students and buildings.

The 2018 Tel Aviv University Board of Governors attracted Jack Ma, the founder and CEO of Alibaba, and HE Luis Alberto Lacalle de Herrera, the former President of Uruguay. CNN's international business superstar Richard Quest was a featured guest on the annual Geopolitical Symposium and then decided to join Mr. Ma and President Lacalle de Herrera on campus after the event to meet students and governors.

The interesting thing was, that with all the uber-accomplished speakers, it was a conversation between TAU's own Brig. Gen. Dr. Danny Gold and Dr. Uzi Rabi that received the longest standing ovation.

This was also a very good year for the American delegation — the largest ever, with 63 participants. We boasted 10 new Board of Governors members. AFTAU Board members Vinna Katz and Aaron Tartakovsky led the largest delegation of new participants under 40, who, by the way, were all really impressive and impressed with TAU. New governor and entrepreneurial superstar Dr. Kathy Fields gave a wonderful speech to a room filled with soon-to-be entrepreneurs.

We also had some very big celebrations.

The just-about-to-open Steinhardt Museum of Natural History was nothing short of incredible. Its interactive exhibits are fascinating and I can't wait to come back with my family on opening day — July 2! The Shmunis family donated a significant Anthropology Institute to the museum that will give researchers the chance to make a big difference in the field.

The Koret Foundation, led by Dr. Anita Friedman, made a major gift that launched TAU collaborations with UC Berkeley and Stanford and will advance breakthroughs in medical and information technology. This is another example of a gift that will inevitably impact hundreds of thousands, if not millions, of people. And, Tel Aviv University is in the driver's seat.

Another major gift that will have serious impact was donated by Anne and William Cohen along with Bill's sister Gail White. This gift is providing research fellowships for women PhD students working in brain science. Research donations are the difference between TAU being a great university and an exceptional one.

Scholarships as a whole are critical to both the past and future of Tel Aviv University and Judy and Stewart Colton are why. The Coltons were honored for providing 30 years of fellowships. We have to thank the Coltons and others like them who built Jacob Frenkel's dirt patch into this exceptional university.

TAU Ventures officially launched. Our own Los Angelino Behzad Kianmahd, CEO of Maxim Commercial Capital, is the lead investor and co-founder of the fund. He said that his work with TAU Ventures is one of the best deals he ever made.

We also commemorated the new additions to The Goldschleger School of Dental Medicine, including the official opening of the Aufzien General Anesthesia Theater, the Finkelstein Sterilization Center, the Dr. Garry Rayant and Dr. Kathy Fields-Rayant Anesthesia Theater and the ribbon-cutting at the Harriet Rothman, of blessed memory, Memorial Garden. Dr. Marc Rothman donated the garden in memory of his mother.

On May 15, 2019, the Board of Governors will again convene in Tel Aviv. It will be President Yossi Klafter's last year, and I'm sure there will be a big celebration of his truly excellent leadership. Mark your calendar. You won't want to miss it!

Richard Sincere
National Chairman


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