Extraordinary Technion Alumni Shaping Silicon Valley and the World

November 12, 2016
Kevin Hattori

Global Impact of Technion Alumni Celebrated

More than 300 distinguished supporters and alumni, tech leaders, and top global entrepreneurs gathered last month to celebrate the impact of Technion-Israel Institute of Technology graduates in the Silicon Valley and beyond. Nine Technion alumni were honored in a November 6 event at the Computer History Museum in Mountain View, Calif., for their innovations and accomplishments.

Also participating were Technion President Professor Peretz Lavie and Vice President of External Relations and Resource Development Professor Boaz Golany, and American Technion Society Executive Vice President Jeff Richard.

“This is the largest gathering of Technion alumni I have ever attended, and I can feel their immense pride for, and the strong attachment to, the Technion,” said President Lavie. “To see all of these people around you who are successful, and who are changing the world is inspiring. It’s gratifying to see that a small school in Israel, and its graduates, contribute so much to the Silicon Valley and to the World.”

Technion alumnus Ilana Golan, of Golan Ventures, emceed the event. In her remarks, Ms. Golan lauded the alumni being honored, saying that, “It’s an honor to be here to celebrate these amazing Technion alumni, who have contributed so much to science and technology.”

The evening’s honorees were:

Leadership & Commitment Award

  • Gil Frostig, VP Engineering, Qualcomm (B.Sc. 1983, Electrical Engineering, Cum Laude)
  • Jacques Benkoski, Partner, U.S. Venture Partners (B.Sc. 1985, Computer Engineering, Cum Laude)

Distinguished Alumni Award

  • Dan Maydan, Former President, Applied Materials (M.Sc. 1962, Electrical Engineering; B.Sc. 1957, Electrical Engineering)
  • Yoram Cedar, Former EVP and CTO, SanDisk (M.Sc. 1982, Computer Architecture; B.Sc. 1978, Electrical Engineering)

Business Leadership Award

  • Johny Srouji, SVP of Hardware Technologies, Apple (M.Sc. 1990, Computer Science; B.Sc. 1987, Computer Science)
  • Oren Zeev, Founding Partner, Zeev Ventures (B.Sc. 1990, Electrical Engineering)

Innovator Award

  • Tomer London, Chief Product Officer & Co-founder, Gusto (B.Sc. 2010, Electrical Engineering)
  • Lior Ron, Co-founder, Otto (M.Sc. 2001, Computer Science, Summa Cum Laude; B.Sc. 1997, Computer Science, Cum Laude)

Community Service Award

  • Orli Rinat, Independent Philanthropy Professional (Computer Science B.Sc. and Agricultural Mechanical Engineering B.Sc. 1985)

During their remarks, each of the honorees pointed to their Technion education as a guiding force that gave them the ability to succeed in their careers:

“My Technion education gave me an amazing foundation upon which I was able to build the rest of my education and my career. The brand and the network have continued to be a tremendous boost to this day.” – Jacques Benkoski

“My Technion journey taught me how to think out of the box and to always strive for innovation that makes a difference in our daily lives.” – Yoram Cedar

“The Technion gave me the jump-start of my career. A strong Technion is important for Israel.” – Gil Frostig

“The Technion showed me there is no problem too big to tackle.” – Tomer London

“The Technion is where it began for us. To support young Israelis in their scientific studies, who will contribute to the future success of Israel as a science- and technology-based community, is what powers our vision and commitment.” – Dr. Dan Maydan

“My experience at the Technion reinforced my belief that I was an equal to men—both intellectually and professionally. I was empowered to navigate any workplace with confidence and ease.” – Orli Rinat

“More than providing me with my engineering toolset, the Technion provided me a people toolset for life. I learned how to continuously strive for excellence without compromises, how to work with and motivate people much smarter than me, and how to build diverse, multidisciplinary teams.” – Lior Ron

“The Technion pushed me to new limits and helped shape my character through its atmosphere of creativity, original thinking and innovations.” – Johny Srouji

“I owe my professional career and business success to the very good start I had at the Technion.” – Oren Zeev

American Technion Society Executive Vice President Jeff Richard said the Technion “is striving to become a top 10 global institution, and is well on its way as the No. 1 Israeli university in both the prestigious International Shanghai Rankings and No. 1 Israeli university in the 2016 Reuters Most Innovative University Report.”

“Our honorees tonight exemplify the qualities that we seek to instill in our graduates,” Richard added. “They are business and community leaders, game changes and disruptors, and proud carriers of the Technion torch. We could not be more proud to recognize these unique individuals.”

Governments, businesses and academic institutions around the world are working to learn from the Technion to replicate the university’s methods to produce outstanding graduates, who seed new ecosystems and economies based on innovation and technology.


About the Technion: The Technion-Israel Institute of Technology, long a key driver of Israeli innovation, and a hub for the Start-Up Nation, has recently expanded to New York and China. It has earned a reputation as one of the world’s leading science and technology universities. Its three Nobel Prize winners exemplify academic excellence. Technion people, ideas and inventions make immeasurable contributions to the world, in areas including life-saving medicine, sustainable energy, computer science, water conservation and nanotechnology.

About the American Technion Society (ATS): ATS donors provide critical support for the Technion — more than $2 billion since its inception in 1940. Based in New York City, the ATS and its supporters across the U.S. provide funds for scholarships, fellowships, faculty recruitment and chairs, research, buildings, laboratories, classrooms and dormitories, and more. Visit www.ats.org to help us make an impact.