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Prof. Michael and Sara Sela celebrated at opening event

Special events

Date: December 4, 2019
Weizmann Magazine Vol. 17
L to R: Prof. Michael Sela, Sara Sela, Prof. Daniel Zajfman

L to R: Prof. Michael Sela, Sara Sela, Prof. Daniel Zajfman

The Opening Event of the 71st Annual General Meeting of the International Board in November 2019 marked the opening of the Michael Sela Auditorium and celebrated Prof. Michael and Sara Sela, pillars of the Weizmann community. It also marked the start of the last Board event in Prof. Daniel Zajfman’s 13-year term as President. More than 500 people were in attendance.

Prof. Sela’s scientific advancements in immunology have led to breakthrough drugs including Copaxone for the treatment of multiple sclerosis, and a series of cancer drugs. He is also past President of the Weizmann Institute. They gave a visionary gift to renovate the former Michael and Anna Wix Auditorium, with the generous consent of the Wix family of the UK. The new state-of-the art Michael Sela Auditorium will be a hub for scientific meetings, Board meetings, and cultural events on campus.

“I owe much more to the Institute than anything I did for the Institute. I owe my life to the Institute,” said Prof. Sela. “I thank Daniel Zajfman for everything he has done for the Institute,” he added, and he deeply thanked Sara for her work on the auditorium refurbishment.

The Board events were compressed by missile fire from Gaza, which shut down the Institute for a full day. Nevertheless, a long series of donors were honored for their contributions and friendship, and Prof. Zajfman’s leadership, and that of his leadership team, was highlighted throughout the week of events. Incoming President Prof. Alon Chen, who began his term on December 1, gave an inaugural speech at the Open Session of the Board, in which he discussed his vision for the future.

The event included a performance by the Young Israel Philharmonic Orchestra.