Education Minister Gideon Sa'ar announced Sunday that Nachman, one of the most recognized figures in the West Bank's Jewish settlement, will receive this year's prize together with Israeli music researcher Eliyahu Hacohen.
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The Israel Prize committee, headed by former Supreme Court Justice Jacob Turkel, noted that Nachman "regarded the settlement of Israel a guiding principle.
"In 1998 he caused Ariel to be declared a city, Samaria's capital, and served that city as mayor since then and until his death."
The committee added that Nachman "was one of the first champions of the Ariel University." Nachman fought for the recognition of the Ariel College as a university, even in the last weeks before his final hospitalization.
Born in 1942, Nachman was elected head of the Ariel Council in 1978, a role he gave up a year later. He was reelected in 1985 and served as Ariel's mayor until his very last day.
He served as a Knesset member on behalf of the Likud party in the 13th Knesset and was a member of the Knesset's Constitution, Law and Justice Committee, Immigration Absorption Committee and the committee on the Second Television and Radio Authority.
Nachman was diagnosed with cancer in 2009, and while battling the disease he formed a close relationship with playwright Anat Gov, who also died of cancer several weeks ago.
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