BOG 2017: Auditorium Commemorates Beloved Son

The Fabian-Cyril Boisson Auditorium donated by Nathalie Kerber to be focal point for biodiversity education in Israel
04 June 2017
From left: TAU Vice President for Resource Development Amos Elad; French Friends President Prof. Francois Heilbronn; Ms. Collette Kerber; TAU President Joseph Klafter. Credit: Yael Zur

A plaque unveiling was held for the very first time at TAU’s soon-to-be-opened Steinhardt Museum of Natural History. The newly launched facility, the Fabian-Cyril Auditorium, will provide a lively and attractive venue for academic and public events.


The Fabian-Cyril Boisson Auditorium donated by Nathalie Kerber commemorates the memory of Fabian-Cyril Boisson, the beloved son of Colette Kerber and nephew of Nathalie Kerber, her late sister.   


At a bittersweet ceremony held in the presence of members of the French Friends Association during the 2017 Board of Governors Meeting, TAU President Joseph Klafter thanked Colette Kerber and acknowledged her late sister, Nathalie, for her generous and visionary gift. “This beautiful auditorium will be the Museum’s main venue for sharing knowledge. It will host scientific conferences, lectures and popular science events and will reinforce the Museum’s mission to educate new generations of Israeli schoolchildren about nature and the environment,” said Prof. Klafter. 


The Steinhardt Museum serves as the State of Israel’s National Center for Biodiversity Studies. It will house over 5 million specimens of animals and plants that represent the region’s natural heritage.


President of the French Friends Prof. François Heilbronn, said: “Fabian-Cyril was a young man who pursued geopolitical studies. His dream was to study in Israel. The French Friends are pleased that it is being named after beautiful young man who left us too suddenly. He will be remembered through this facility. ”


Colette Kerber is a lady of letters, who owns a famous Parisian bookstore and is well known in the city’s literary scene. Her sister, Nathalie, was a lawyer who wrote several books. The family are committed Zionists with a love of learning and books.


“It is with profound sadness and joy that I dedicate this auditorium here today. I visited Tel Aviv University with my late sister, Nathalie, and we decided that this was the right place to commemorate Fabian-Cyril. He was a curious little boy who loved animals and plants so this is a fitting place to commemorate his name,” she said.


Chairperson of the Museum, Prof. Tamar Dayan, said, “In this beautiful auditorium we hope to inspire young minds with the beauty, complexity and uniqueness of nature, to enrich their imagination and to develop their scientific curiosity.” 


The auditorium is the second major hall that is perpetuating his name and memory at Tel Aviv University. The first was established in 2009 at the Gretl and Fred Raymond Building of Health Professions, and is a dynamic and important facility on campus.


Dr. Noa Shenkar, a taxonomist at the Steinhardt Museum gave a lively and colorful presentation on her research on marine ascidians. 



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