Prof. Aharon Barak

Aharon Barak was born in Kovne (Kaunas), Lithuania in 1936. In 1958 he completed his master’s degree at the Faculty of Law of the Hebrew University of Jerusalem, and between 1960 and 1963 he served as a teaching assistant at the faculty. In 1963 Barak received his license to practice law, completed his doctorate studies cum laude at the Faculty of Law, and joined the staff at the faculty. As a member of the faculty, Barak was the moving force behind the establishment of the first law journal in Israel to be edited by students. Today, Mishpatim is the most important legal journal in Israel. In 1974-1975, Barak served as dean of the Faculty of Law, and in 1975 he was appointed to the position of attorney general. Barak joined the Supreme Court in 1978 and in 1995 he was appointed president of the Court, a position he held until his retirement from judicial functions in 2006. Barak is considered one of the most brilliant and productive legal experts of our times. His rulings have influenced all fields of law in Israel and are studied by attorneys and researchers from around the world. Throughout his years of judicial service, Barak never abandoned the field of legal research. He published a lengthy list of books and articles, focusing in particular on judicial interpretation, human dignity, and the role of the judge in a democratic society. Several of his books have been translated into various languages. Aharon Barak received the Israel Prize for Law in 1975 and the Zeltner Prize in 1984. He serves as a member of the Israel Academy of the Sciences. In 1999, the International Association of Judges awarded Barak its Justice in the World prize.