Rivka Carmi

Provost Lisa Lynch and Rivka Carmi

Left to Right: Provost Lisa Lynch, Rivka Carmi

Rivka Carmi was president of Ben-Gurion University of the Negev from 2006-18, the first woman to serve as president at an Israeli university.

A native of Israel and an alumna of Hadassah Medical School of the Hebrew University of Jerusalem, Carmi is a pediatrician, neonatologist, and medical geneticist. Her research focused on genetic diseases in the Negev Arab-Bedouin population. Formerly the Kreitman Foundation Chair in Pediatric Genetics at BGU, she has written more than 150 publications on medical genetics, and helped identify 12 genes and delineate three syndromes, one of which is known as the Carmi Syndrome.

Early in her administrative career, she directed the Genetics Institute at the Soroka University Medical Center, a teaching hospital affiliated with BGU. In 2000, she was elected dean of the university’s Faculty of Health Sciences, becoming the first female head of an Israeli medical school, a position she held for five years.

From 2002-05, she was chair of the Israeli Association of Medical Deans. She also served as chair of Israel’s Association of University Heads, advocating tirelessly for the advancement of women in medicine and academia.

In 2015, Carmi was made a Commander of the Order of the British Empire, an honor conferred by Queen Elizabeth II.