Aryeh Shenkar: Pioneer of the Textile Industry in Israel and Founding President of the Manufacturers Association

אריה שנקר (1877– 3 באוקטובר 1959) היה תעשיין, מחלוצי תעשיית הטקסטיל בישראל והנשיא הראשון של התאחדות התעשיינים בישראל.


Aryeh Shenkar (1877 – October 3, 1959) was an industrialist, one of the early leaders of the textile industry in Israel, and the founding president of the Manufacturers Association in Israel.

Shenkar was born near Pohrebyshche in the Vinnytsia region of Ukraine into a Hasidic family. His father, Ben Zion, was a follower of the Rebbe Rabbi Shimon of Rozhin. During his youth, Shenkar was active in Zionist organizations in his hometown.

In 1924, Shenkar immigrated to the Land of Israel from Russia, where he would become a prominent entrepreneur and one of the pioneers of the textile industry in the country. In 1925, he purchased the Lodziya weaving house located at 43 Nachmani Street in Tel Aviv and transformed it into a successful textile factory.

In 1935, the factory was relocated to the neighborhood of Agrobank (now part of Holon) and became one of the prominent factories in Mandatory Palestine. Its products were exported to Asia and Europe. His nephew, Ben Zion Shenkar, moved to Holon with his family following the factory's relocation and became one of the founders of the city of Holon.

Aryeh Shenkar established the "Association of Industrialists in the Land of Israel" (today known as the Manufacturers Association) and served as its president.

Aryeh Shenkar passed away in Tel Aviv on the 2nd of Tishrei, 5719 (1959) and was laid to rest in the Trumpeldor Cemetery in Tel Aviv.

In his honor, the industrial area in Petah Tikva, Kiryat Aryeh (and a street within this industrial area), and Shenkar – the College of Engineering and Design in Ramat Gan, established in 1970 – were named after him. Additionally, the Faculty of Physics and Chemistry building at Tel Aviv University, streets in the Haifa Bay area, Holon, and Herzliya Pituach were named in his honor.

Since 1980, the Manufacturers Association has awarded the "Aryeh Shenkar Industry Award," named after him, to veteran industrialists in recognition of their contributions to the development of the industry in the State of Israel.

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