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The Casali Foundation

Alberto CasaliAlberto Casali, C.B.E., Cavaliere del Lavoro, was a scion of an Austrian Jewish family on industrialists from Trieste, which belonged to the Habsburg Empire. On returning to Trieste, after World War II, he resurrected the family-held Stock S.A. Company from the ruins of postwar Italy, and made it prosperous again. In addition to his contribution to Italy's recovery, he helped guide the young State of Israel towards an original science-based industry. He recognized the fact that the human potential was present, but that it was not exploited sufficiently to the application of science. It was his wish that some of the Israeli academic tradition and competence be directed towards this practical goal. That was realized when Alberto Casali was approached by his old-time friend, Professor Zvi Enrico Jolles, who conceived the idea of founding an institute for applied chemistry in one of the Israeli universities.

To implement this idea, the Casali Foundation was set up to establish and endow an institute for applied chemistry. After discussions with several Israeli academic institutions, the Casali Foundation signed an agreement with the Hebrew University of Jerusalem to fund the construction of the Casali Institute of Applied Chemistry situated on the Edmond Safra campus in Givat Ram. Professor Jolles served as the first director of the Casali Institute of Applied Chemistry until his untimely passing away in 1971.

The Institute was integrated into the Graduate School of Applied Science and Technology, which would not have been established without Alberto Casali's contribution. The Foundation also equipped the Institute and paid its expenses for the first five years of operation. Alberto and Kathleen Casali laid the cornerstone on October 28, 1970 and the Institute began working immediately in the provisional space allotted by the Institute of Chemistry. The Casali Institute building was dedicated on March 12, 1975 three years after Alberto's passing.

Kathleen Casali became President of the Casali Foundation after her husband's death. She fervently continued to support the Institute and visited Jerusalem on several occasions. With her encouragement the Foundation has helped the Institute financially, by offering research grants to its staff and study scholarships to its students, and by contributing to its infrastructure. Mrs. Kathleen Casali passed away on June 24, 2000.

To commemorate the name of the Casali family and to perpetuate its legacy, the Foundation continues its support, thus further enabling the uninterrupted progress of scientific activities at the Casali Institute.

The Casali Foundation is a non-profit organization limited by guarantee.

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