Yigal Cohen Orgad
Yigal Cohen OrgadEliran Aharon

Chancellor Yigal Cohen Orgad, former Minister of Finance and one of the founders of Ariel University, passed away, Ariel University announced.

Yigal Cohen Orgad was born in 1937 in Tel Aviv. He was an active member of the Zionist Beitar Youth Movement. He went onto organize the establishment of a Beitar Nachal unit, and in 1957 was among the founders of Amatzia, a Nachal stronghold situated in an area between the Hevron hills and the Gaza Strip, that was under constant attack by Fedayeen infiltrators.

Following his military service in the Nachal Paratroopers Brigade, Cohen Orgad fought as a reservist in the Jerusalem Brigade reconnaissance unit in the battle for the liberation of Jerusalem during the Six Day War.

Cohen Orgad completed his undergraduate studies in Economics and Education, and studied for his Master’s degree in Economics and Business Administration from the Hebrew University in Jerusalem.

The Six Day War and the Yom Kippur War influenced him to enter the public arena and politics to promote the settlement movement in Judea and Samaria, initially in Maaleh Adumim, and then in Ariel. His service as a member of Knesset from 1977-1988, and later as the Minister of Finance under Prime Minister Yitzhak Shamir provided him with the opportunity of advancing his political beliefs. He was influential in the settlement movement in Judea and Samaria as a member of the Knesset Finance Committee and as the Minister of Finance.

Once he retired from political life, Cohen Orgad wholeheartedly devoted his time and efforts to the development of Ariel University.

"He will be missed," a statement from the university concluded.