Honoring the Frilley family of France

Date: Monday, April 30, 2018
Frilley family with Prof. Israel Bar-Joseph, Vice President of Resource Development and Public Affairs

Frilley family with Prof. Israel Bar-Joseph, Vice President of Resource Development and Public Affairs

The Frilley family of Paris was honored for a special gift to the Weizmann Institute in a dedication ceremony on April 16. The family’s donation originated from the sale of four paintings owned by Isabelle Frilley’s aunt and uncle, the late Frida and Michel Kagansky, who requested that after their passing, the proceeds would be donated to the Weizmann Institute.

The family’s connection with the Institute began decades ago. Isabelle’s cousin, Olga Blumenfeld, was married to Dr. Chaim Weizmann’s nephew, Serge Blumenfeld. Olga and Serge escaped to the U.S. from Europe at the start of World War II, and Olga became a biochemist at Albert Einstein Hospital in New York.

“It is very fitting that, given your family’s special connection to Israel and to science, and to Chaim Weizmann, that this dedication ceremony falls on the week of the 70th anniversary of Israel’s establishment—Yom Ha’atzmaut,” said Prof. Israel Bar-Joseph, Vice President of Resource Development and Public Affairs.

Isabelle Frilley came to visit the Weizmann Institute last year for the first time, and this year brought her daughter-in-law and grandchildren, “because I thought it was important for them to experience Israel and see the Weizmann Institute, and also know that they will carry the family torch with the Weizmann Institute in the future,” she said in an interview.

“The Weizmann Institute has always been in my head,” says Ms. Frilley. “I followed the will of my aunt, but because of the connection with Chaim Weizmann, I always thought of the Weizmann Institute first when I thought about Israel. This was truly a family gift, because my mother and I carried out the will of my aunt and uncle, and now we are engaging the children and grandchildren.”