Israeli figures that have shaped Israeli society and culture in the past 70 years

Hi-Tech:

Gil Shwed גיל שווד

Ehud Shabtai & Uri Levine (inventors of Waze) אהוד שבתאי ואורי לוין

Orna Berry – The first woman to serve as Chief Scientist – אורנה ברי

Miri Polachek – The Founding Executive Director of IBT from 2011-2017 מירי פולצ’ק

Liron Azrielant - Founder, General Partner, Meron Capital - לירון עזריאלנט
Noam Inbar -Head of Oracle Startup Ecosystem  נעם ענבר

Sport: 

Yarden Gerbi – Judoka world champion  – ירדן ג’רבי

Yael Arad – The first Israeli to win an Olympic medal (Judo)-  יעל ארד

Or Sasson –  An Israeli Olympic judoka –  אורי ששון

Shahar Tzuberi – Windsurfer and Olympic bronze medalist –  שחר צוברי

Ariel “Arik” Ze’evi – Retired Israeli judoka –  אריק זאבי

Esther Roth-Shachamorov – A former Israeli track and field athlete-  אסתר רוט – שחמורוב

Shahar Pe’er – A retired Israeli professional tennis player – שחר פאר

Gal Fridman –  An Israeli windsurfer and Israel’s only Olympic Gold Medalist  -גל פרידמן

Lee (Lee-El) Korzits – An Israeli windsurfer – לי קורזיץ

Neta Rivkin – One of Israel’s most successful rhythmic gymnasts – נטע ריבקין

Vered Buskila – An Israeli Olympic sailor  – ורד בוסקילה

Omri Casspi – An Israeli professional basketball player in the NBA-  עומרי כספי

 

Science:

Ada Yonath – The first woman in 45 years to win the Nobel Prize for Chemistry  – עדה יונת

Ilan Ramon (Z”l) – The first Israeli astronaut for NASA – אילן רמון

Aaron Ciechanover – Won awarded the 2004 Nobel prize in Chemistry – אהרן צ’חנובר

Dan Shechtman  – Was awarded the 2011 Nobel Prize in Chemistry – דן שכטמן

 Avram Hershko – a Hungarian-born Israeli biochemist and Nobel laureate in Chemistry (2004) – אברהם הרשקו

Daniel Kahneman – was awarded the 2002 Nobel Memorial Prize in Economic Sciences – דניאל כהנמן

Yisrael Aumann – was awarded the 2005 Nobel Memorial Prize in Economic – ישראל אומן

Shulamit Levenberg – Dean,Faculty of Biomedical Engineering, Technion  שולמית לוונברג

Ruth Arnon – an Israeli biochemist and codeveloper of the multiple sclerosis drug Copaxone – רות ארנון

 

Technology:

Amnon Shashua –  a computer science professor & a co-founder and CTO of Mobileye  – אמנון שעשועNathan Keller – Cryptography (especially of innovative systems) נתן קלר

Brian Rosen – clean energy – בריאן רוזן

Keren Censor-Hillel – theory of computing קרן צנזור הלל

Nadav Cohen – deep learning נדב כהן

 

Economics:

Stanley Fischer –  Governor of the Bank of Israel from 2005 to 2013  – סטנלי פישר

Karnit Flug – The first female governor of the Bank of Israel – קרנית פלוג

Manuel Trajtenberg – chair of the Planning and Budgeting Committee of the Council for Higher Education in Israel – מנואל טרכטנברג

Hedva Bar – Supervisor of Banks – חדווה בר

Sergiu Hart – An Israeli mathematician and economist, winner of Israel prize 2018 – סרג’יו הרט

Yaron Zelekha – was an Israeli Ministry of Finance accountant general during 2003–2007

 

Literature:

Amos Oz – An Israeli writer, novelist, journalist and intellectual – עמוס עוז

David Grossman – An awarded Israeli author, winner of Israel prize 2018 – דוד גרוסמן

Abraham B. Yehoshua – an Israeli novelist, essayist, and playwright – א. ב יהושע

Shai Agnon –  a Nobel Prize laureate writer and was one of the central figures of modern Hebrew fiction – ש”י עגנון

Zeruya Shalev – a bestselling Israeli author – צרויה שלו

Etgar Keret – an Israeli writer known for his short stories, graphic novels, and scriptwriting for film and television – אתגר קרת

Uri Orlev – an Israeli children’s author and translator of Polish-Jewish origin – אורי אורלב

Yochi Brandes – An author inspired by all Jewish sources- יוכי ברנדס

Lizzie Doron – A writer – ליזי דורון

Galila Ron-Feder Amit –  an Israeli children books author, wrote over 400 books – גלילה רון פדר עמית

 

Poetry:

Adi Keissar – Israeli poet, founder of Ars Poetica – עדי קיסר

Ars poetica – a contemporary Israeli poetry group – ערס פואטיקה

Leah Goldberg – a prolific Hebrew-language poet, author, playwright, literary translator, and comparative literary researcher. Her writings are considered classics of Israeli literature. לאה גולדברג

Agi Mishol –  an awarded Israeli poet. אגי משעול

Esther Raab – a Hebrew author of prose and poetry, known as “the first Sabra poet”, for the prominence of her native landscape in her imagery. אסתר ראב

Rachel Bluwstein (Rachel the Poetess)  – a Hebrew-language poet who immigrated to Palestine. Was the first Jewish woman poet in Israel to receive recognition in a genre that was practiced solely by men רחל המשוררת

Shlomit Naim Naor – an educator and poet. שלומית נעים נאור

Almog Behar – poet, translator. His Mizrahi heritage is at the center of his work as an acclaimed poet, critic, and activist. אלמוג בהר

Roy Hasan – An Israeli contemporary Hebrew poet. He is a principal member of the Ars poetica literary movement – רועי חסן

 

Music:

Eden Ben Zaken -An Israeli singer, who gained recognition following her participation in the first season of the TV show X Factor Israel, in which she placed second. עדן בן זקן

Static & Ben El Tavori – An Israeli musical duo comprising the singers Liraz Russo (Static) and Ben El Tavori –  סטטיק ובן אל

Omer Adam – An Israeli singer. His music fuses elements of eastern “Mizrahi” (Oriental-Middle Eastern) and Western pop instrumentation –  עומר אדם

Shlomo Artzi –  An Israeli folk rock singer-songwriter – שלמה ארצי

Chava Alberstein – An Israeli singer, lyricist, composer, and musical arranger חווה אלברשטיין

Arik Einstein – Was an Israeli singer, songwriter, actor, and screenwriter אריק איינשטיין

Sarit Hadad – An Israeli singer.the first Israeli to perform (professionally) in Jordan שרית חדד

Ofra Haza – Was an Israeli singer, actress and Grammy Award-nominee recording artist, commonly known as “The Israeli Madonna” – עפרה חזה

Idan Raichel – An Israeli singer-songwriter and a musician, known for his Idan Raichel Project, distinctive for its fusion of electronics, traditional Hebrew texts, Arab and Ethiopian music – עידן רייכל

Itzhak Perlman – An Israeli-American violinist, conductor, and music teacher

Zubin Mehta – an Indian conductor of Western classical music. In 1969, he was appointed Music Adviser to the Israel Philharmonic Orchestra and in 1981 Mehta became its permanent Music Director for Life  – זובין מהטה

 

Acting:

Ronit Elkabetz (Z”l) – Was an Israeli actress and filmmaker. She worked in both Israeli and French cinema. She won three Ophir Awards and received a total of seven nominations. רונית אלקבץ
Hanna Rovina -Was an Israeli actress. She is often referred to as the “First Lady of Hebrew Theatre” – חנה רובינא

Gila Almagor – An Israeli actress, film star, and author. In Israel, she is known as “queen of the Israeli cinema and theatre” – גילה אלמגור

Eliana Tidhar – An Israeli actress – אליאנה תדהר

Gal Gadot -an Israeli actress and model. Achieve wide recognition for portraying Wonder Woman in the DC Extended Universe, starting with Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice (2016), and then the solo film Wonder Woman and the ensemble Justice League (both 2017) – גל גדות

Lior Raz – An Israeli actor and screenwriter. He is best known for portraying Doron Kavillio in the political thriller Fauda –  ליאור רז

Itay Tiran – One of the most acclaimed Israeli actors of his day – איתי טיראן

 

Sculpture and painting:

Menashe Kadishman – was an Israeli sculptor and painter.He is most famous for his metallic sculptures and colorful sheep paintings. –מנשה קדישמן

David (Dudu) Gerstein– An Israeli painter and sculptor. He began as a figurative painter and illustrator of children’s books and was recipient of the Israel Museum Prize for illustration.Gerstein’s post-pop art style is characterized by bold colored, multi layered cutout steel. דוד גרשטיין

Igael Tumarkin  –  an Israeli painter and sculptor  יגאל תומרקין

Yitzhak Danziger – was an Israeli sculptor. He was one of the pioneer sculptors of the Canaanite Movement, and later joined the “Ofakim Hadashim” (New Horizons) group. יצחק דנציגר

Ilana Goor – an individualistic, autodidactic, intuitive and multifaceted artist – אילנה גור

Lidia Zavadsky -was an Israeli visual artist, a holocaust survivor. Her work mainly focused on ceramic sculpture. She was head of the ceramics department at Bezalel Academy of Art. לידיה זבצקי

 

Medical & Health:

Dr. Tali Jonash-Kimhi – Interventional neuroradiology, Director of Imaging Division ד”ר טלי יונש – קמחי

Prof. Idit Matot – Director; Anesthesia, Pain and Intensive Care Division פרופ’ עידית מטות
Rosa Welt-Straus – The first Austrian woman to earn a medical degree, as well as the first female eye doctor in Europe. After her ALiyah in 1919, she represented the Union of Hebrew Women for Equal Rights in Eretz Israel in the International Woman Suffrage Alliance.  – רוזה וולט-שטראוס

Vera Weizmann – was a medical doctor and a Zionist activist and wife of Chaim Weizmann, the first president of the State of Israel – ורה וויצמן

Prof. Rivka Carmi  – an Israeli pediatrician and geneticist who, since May 2006, has served as President of Ben-Gurion University of the Negev (BGU). She is the first woman to be appointed president of an Israeli university. פרופ’ רבקה כרמי

Dr. Leonid Edelman - the head of the anesthesiology department at the Rabin Medical Center in Petah Tikva, President of the World Medical Association (WMA). ד”ר ליאוניד אדלמן

Dr. Chen Kugel - Head at Israel National Center of Forensic Medicine ד”ר חן קוגל

Religion: 
Chana Kehat -  founder and first chairwoman of Kolech: The Religious Women’s Forum  - חנה קהת

Rabbi David Golinkin – President of The Schechter Institutes, Inc. and President Emeritus of the Schechter Institute of Jewish Studies, and Professor of Jewish Law at the Schechter Institute of Jewish Studies in Jerusalem – הרב דוד גולינקין

Rabbi Tamar Elad-Appelbaum is the founder of ZION: An Eretz Israeli Congregation in Jerusalem; and Vice President of the Masorti Rabbinical Assembly – הרבה תמר אלעד אפלבאום

Rabbi Binyamin Tzvi (Benny) Lau – an Israeli Orthodox rabbi, community leader, activist, author, and public speaker,  The head of the Human Rights and Judaism in Action Project at the Israel Democracy Institute and head of 929: Tanakh B’yachad – הרב בני לאו

Bracha Qafih – was an Israeli rabbanit, wife of Rabbi Yosef Qafih, winner of Israel Prize for her charitable work in 1999 – ברכה קאפח

Adina Bar-Shalom – an Israeli educator, columnist, and social activist. She is the founder of the first college for Haredi students in Jerusalem, and has spent years working to overcome gender discrimination in the Orthodox Jewish community. She was awarded the Israel Prize for lifetime achievement and special contribution to society in 2014 – עדינה בר שלום.

 

Law:

Dorit Beinisch – An Israeli Justice. Was the 9th president of the Supreme Court of Israel. Appointed on September 14, 2006, after the retirement of Aharon Barak, she served in this position until February 28, 2012. She was the first woman to serve as president of the Israeli Supreme Court  -דורית בייניש

Ruth Gavison – an Israeli Law professor at the Hebrew University of Jerusalem. Her areas of research include Ethnic Conflict, the Protection of Minorities, Human Rights, Political Theory, Judiciary Law, Religion and Politics, and Israel as a Jewish and democratic state. רות גביזון

Aharon Barak is a Professor of Law. Was President of the Supreme Court of Israel from 1995 to 2006. Prior to that, he served as a Justice of the Supreme Court of Israel (1978–95), as the Attorney General of Israel (1975–78), and as the Dean of the Law Faculty of the Hebrew University of Jerusalem (1974–75)  – אהרן ברק

Dalia Dorner -was a Justice of the Supreme Court of Israel from 1993 to 2004 דליה דורנר

Esther Hayut –  is the Chief Justice of the Supreme Court of Israel. אסתר חיות

Miriam Naor  – was President of the Supreme Court of Israel from January 2015 to October 2017. מרים נאור

Asher Grunis – Was the President of the Supreme Court of Israel between 2012 and 2015 אשר גרוניס

Meir Shamgar  -was President of the Israeli Supreme Court from 1983 until 1995 – מאיר שמגר

Shimon Agranat – was the President of the Supreme Court of Israel from 1965 until 1976 –  שמעון אגרנט

 

Communications:

Ilana Dayan -an Israeli investigative journalist, anchorwoman, and attorney – אילנה דיין

Carmela Menashe – an Israeli journalist serving as a military reporter on IDF issues, on Israel’s public radio Kol Yisrael – כרמלה מנשה

Keren Neubach – an Israeli journalist, television presenter for the Israeli Channel 1, and radio presenter for Reshet Bet -קרן נויבך
Ron Ben-Yishai an award winning Israeli journalist. A veteran war correspondent, Ben-Yishai has covered many military conflicts in several different regions, winner of Israel prize 2018 – רון בן ישי

Haim Yavin  – an Israeli television anchor and documentary filmmaker. He was one of Israel’s leading news presenters, associated with the job for so many decades that he was known as “Mr. Television.”חיים יבין

Ruth Bondy was a Czech journalist and translator. Bondy was a Holocaust survivor who wrote for the Israeli newspaper Davar and translated books written in Czech to Hebrew. She was awarded the Sokolov Award in 1987 and the Tchernichovsky Prize in 2014 – רות בונדי

Gal Gabai -Journalist, news anchor and head of 929: Tanakh B’yachad –  גל גבאי

Raviv Drucker is an Israeli journalist, political commentator and investigative reporter רביב דרוקר

Einat Fishbain – Israeli Sokolov Award winning journalist –  עינת פישביין

Guy Rolnik -is a journalist, executive, entrepreneur, and a Clinical Professor at the University of Chicago. He founded Israeli media organization TheMarker and is a Deputy Publisher of the Haaretz daily newspaper. Rolnik is an influential business and economic journalist in Israel promoting a pro-market ideology – גיא רולניק

 

Social Activism:

Rabbi Menachem Froman, was an Israeli Orthodox rabbi and a peacemaker and negotiator with close ties to Palestinian religious leaders from the PLO and Hamas and Rabbinit Hadassah Froman, an Orthodox Jewish woman peacemaker, from the West Bank settlement of Teko. הרב מנחם והרבנית הדסה פרומן

BATYA KAHANA- DROR - director MAVOI SATUM, a non-profit organization provides legal and emotional support to women who have been refused a Jewish divorce (get) בתיה כהנא דרור

Doron Almog is a former Major General in the IDF reserves. In 2016, he received the Israel Prize for his lifetime of achievement.  Founded Aleh Negev, a village for the disabled which provides residential, medical and social services to the handicapped of southern Israel – דורון אלמוג

Tomer Avital  - Journalist, 100 Days of transparency. His goal is to make the Knesset’s (Israeli Parliament) members more accountable an promoting a more transparent decision making process - תומר אביטל

Mickey Gitzin – Executive Director of the New Israel Fund in Israel. מיקי גיצין

Adi Altschuler  –  an educator and a social entrepreneur. She is the founder of the “Krembo Wings” youth movement – Israel’s “first movement for youths with and without special needs”. She is the founder of “Memories@Home”, an alternative gathering on Yom HaShoah (Holocaust Memorial day). עדי אלטשולר

Anat Hoffman –  an Israeli activist and serves as Executive Director of the Israel Religious Action Center, also known as IRAC. She is the director and founding member of Nashot HaKotel, also known as Women of the Wall. ענת הופמן

Chili Tropper – holds a BA in Humanities and Social Sciences and a Master’s degree in Jewish Education and History. In the past sixteen years, Tropper has been involved in the fields of education and social activity- with an emphasis on reducing gaps in education.FOunder of “Shachen Tov” (“A Good Neighbor”), “Maagaley Tzedek” (“Circles of Justice”) and “Psifas” (“Mosaic”) –  חילי טרופר

 

Jewish thought:

Haviva Pedaya – a philosopher, researcher of Judaism, Mysticism, Kabbalah and Hasidism, and is engaged in writing a mass of criticism and culture. She is also a creator in theater, music and poetry – חביבה פדיה

Nechama Leibowitz  – was a noted Israeli Bible scholar and commentator who rekindled interest in Bible study.

Rachel Elior  –  an Israeli professor of Jewish philosophy at the Hebrew University of Jerusalem in Jerusalem. Her principal subject of research has been the history of early Jewish mysticism – רחל אליאור

Aviezer Ravitzky – Israeli philosopher, and 2001 Israel Prize laureate אביעזר רביצקי

Tamar Ross –  a professor of Jewish Philosophy at Bar-Ilan University.  Her areas of scholarly expertise include the thought of Abraham Isaac Kook, the modern Musar movement and the ideology of Mitnaggedism, and Judaism and gender. She is the author of books and articles on Jewish ethics and theology, contemporary issues in traditional Jewish thought, philosophy of halakha, and Orthodox Jewish feminism – תמר רוס

Eliezer Schweid – an Israeli scholar, writer and Professor of Jewish Philosophy at The Hebrew University of Jerusalem, winner of Israel prize 1994 – אליעזר שביד