Yeshiva College Alumnus Dr. Hillel Furstenberg Wins Israel’s Wolf Prize

Jan 15, 2007 — Dr. Hillel Furstenberg, a graduate of YU High School for Boys and Yeshiva College, was recently announced as one of the winners of Israel’s Wolf Prize. The award was granted in recognition of the leading mathematician’s “profound contributions to ergodic theory, probability, topological dynamics, analysis on symmetric spaces and homogenous flows.”

The Wolf Prize, considered Israel’s Nobel Prize, were established by the late German-born inventor, diplomat and philanthropist, Dr. Ricardo Wolf. Since 1978, five or six prizes have been awarded annually in the sciences. Dr. Furstenberg will share the $100,000 Wolf Foundation for Mathematics prize with Dr. Stephen Smale of the University of California at Berkeley. The award will be presented at the Knesset by the President of Israel.

“To me, as undoubtedly to many who attended YC in the early 50s, the subject of mathematics was identified with one remarkable individual, Professor Jekuthiel Ginsburg,” said Dr. Furstenberg. “It is hard to imagine a professional career that owes more to one individual and to one institution than my own career owes to Jekuthiel Ginsberg and Yeshiva University. Over and beyond the mathematics I learned, I experienced the love of mathematics blended with human-kindness, an experience I can only wish I could replicate for others.”

Dr. Furstenberg has been a professor of mathematics at the Hebrew University since 1965, when he made aliya with his wife Rochelle. He has also taught at Bar Ilan University.

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