Brigadier General (Ret.) Pinhas Buchris ’91 is a longtime pioneer of Israel’s security, dedicated to serving the State both on the frontlines and in various leadership positions. He’s also a man who lives by his words.

Once, when asked what advice he would give to up-and-coming Technion students, he said: “If I have a message for (them), it is: ‘The daring is victorious.’ Don’t give up on your dreams even in difficult times. Studies and perseverance can lead to improvement and success, even when the environment seems hostile or difficult.”

His long and storied career and bold contributions to securing Israel make Mr. Buchris a true example of success born from daring actions, and the very embodiment of Israel’s core values, furthering freedom, justice, and peace for the nation.

Born in Yavnal to a family of immigrants from Tunis, Mr. Buchris served in the Israel Defense Forces (IDF) for 10 years before beginning his studies at the Technion in 1988. Dedicated to protecting the welfare of his fellow Israelis, he was called up from the reserves and served for an additional 15 years, achieving the rank of brigadier general and serving as the commander of Unit 8200, the largest unit in the IDF focused on collecting intelligence for crucial operations, and Unit 81, a secret technology unit part of the Special Operations Division. Using his computer science background, Mr. Buchris helped develop and implement remote recording devices that could be planted in dangerous areas to gather intelligence instead of sending in soldiers.

During his service, Mr. Buchris participated in the daring Entebbe raid, a 1976 counter-terrorist mission to rescue civilians from a passenger flight hijacked on its Tel Aviv – Paris journey during a layover in Athens and taken hostage to Uganda. Mr. Buchris and his fellow soldiers rescued 102 of the 106 hostages held, making the operation a resounding achievement for the IDF.

Upon his release from the IDF, Mr. Buchris served as the director general of the Israel Ministry of Defense from 2007 to 2010. He is credited with spearheading various crucial defense projects during his tenure, including the development of the Iron Dome anti-missile defense system, the transfer of IDF bases to the Negev, and the billion-dollar cost-saving plan in army operations authored by McKinsey Consulting Co., which was approved just before his departure from the role.

For his longtime dedication and contributions to the State of Israel, Mr. Buchris was honored with numerous prestigious awards, including the Israel Defense Prize, the Israel Security Award, and a medal from the president of the State of Israel for his contribution to Israel’s security and economic strength.

A current venture capitalist and founder of State of Mind Ventures, Mr. Buchris’ previously held positions include CEO of BAZAN Group Oil Refineries, partner at Apax Partners, and special advisor of the Office of the Prime Minister of Israel.

Photo credit: Haim Zach / GPO