ICE | The Israel Chemist and Chemical Engineer | Issue 8

43 The Israel Chemist and Chemical Engineer Issue 8 · November 2021 · Kislev 5782 Report Lahav, who worked hard for this recognition without my knowledge. I oversaw the organic chemistry laboratory at the Hebrew University, so many students who took that lab wanted to join my research group. It was crucial for me that they succeed, and indeed, every one of thempublished at least one research paper with me. Some of these students completed their doctoral work with me. Others took my recommendation to do their PhD at the Weizmann Institute or in other universities. I was happy to see that most students who completed their PhD in my lab later developed successful careers. My research focused on polymer science, which was underdeveloped those days. To benefit my graduate students, I constantly launched new projects and entered new fields, and every successful topic opened the way to additional issues. In recent years, I have written several books, specifically in Hebrew, to help young students. I thank all my former students, research associates, and all colleagues in research and teaching laboratories. I wish you all continuing success in everything you are doing. And finally, I want to bless you all with the Priestly Blessing: ‘May God bless you, and guard you. May God make His face shine unto you and be gracious to you. May God lift His face unto you and give you peace.’ ” Closing remarks Ehud Keinan closed the event: “I wish to respond to the warm compliments offered by the gold medalists Benny Gerber and Doron Aurbach, and I want to make three comments. First, nobody can argue that the ICS is a globally visible and highly influential society worldwide. People can offer different reasons for this observation. In my view, a dominant key to the success story of the ICS and the entire Israeli scientific community is our unique culture. People care about one another, tending to cooperate, collaborate, and exchange ideas. Most Israeli scientists are happy with the achievements of their colleagues rather than being jealous of them. Of course, as is the case worldwide, there are competition and internal politics, but we still behave like members of a big family. Based on my experience, I can testify that these characteristics are less common in other cultures and countries. This behavior is probably the main reason that the ICS has been so successful over nearly a century. My second comment relates to Norman’s story that, as a young student, he wanted to be like me. It reminds me of a true story about the famous composer George Gershwin, who approached the accomplished composer, Arnold Schoenberg, requesting to become his student in private composition lessons. When Schoenberg asked him to explain his goals, Gershwin answered, “I wish to become the second Arnold Schoenberg.” Schoenberg responded angrily, “Why do you want to become Schoenberg number two if you can be Gershwin number one?” I recommend all young students to remember this story. The third comment relates to the presumably suspicious observation that a high proportion of ICS prize winners started their careers in my research group. With some sense of humor, I could argue that there is evidence of institutional corruption at the ICS. Nevertheless, you should know that entirely independent juries select all prize winners, and I am not part of their decisions. The jury members, who serve for three years, make highly successful decisions because they all maintain strict independence and confidentiality. I consider myself very lucky to have so many excellent students over the years. I am happy watching them develop bright careers either in the academic world or in the chemical industry. Finally, I thank all prize winners, students, friends, and families for attending this exciting event. I must admit that I am emotional and moved by ICS prize ceremonies. For me, awarding the ICS prizes has always been the most rewarding part of my highly demanding responsibility as ICS President for more than 13 years. I hope to see you again at the 86th Annual Meeting of the ICS on February 22-23, 2022. Thank you all for coming and for actively contributing to this successful Prize Ceremony.”