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Zvi Enrico Jolles

JOLLES, ZVI ENRICO (1902–1971), Born in Lemberg (Lwów), Galicia, the son of Bernard Jolles (c1876-c1942/3) and Amalie (née Leiter; 1877 Narajów-1926 Vienna). Zvi was educated at a local Gymnasium in Lwow. From 1919 he worked as a pioneer in Palestine and in 1924 he studied at Florence University, where after graduation in Organic Chemistry and Pharmacy he worked with Prof Angelo Angeli and in 1930 was awarded the Hugo Schiff Prize.  He rose to Associate Professor of Applied Chemistry in 1937, and specialised in nitro-compounds, holding contemporaneous posts as consultant  to the Italian Directorate of Naval Armaments from 1931 to 1936, and assistant director of the National Sugar Manufacturers Corporation from 1936 to 1938. Dismissed through Italian Racial Laws in 1938, he was invited to Britain by the Society for Protection of Science and Learning, where he worked at the Lister Institute from 1938 to 1940. Enrico was interned on the Isle of Man as an “enemy alien”in 1940 during World War II. His sister was deported to Auschwitz; and in Poland other close family members also perished in the Holocaust. At ICI in Manchester, his pioneering work on fibre-reactive dyes led to the development of the successful Procion range. He headed research and development at two British chemical companies 1955 to 1966 making advances in flame retardants and additives for polymers. He published many professional papers and held a number of patents. He was elected FRIC in 1962. 

Jolles contributed to The Chemistry of the Carbon Compounds (Elsevier ) and Thorpe's Dictionary of Applied Chemistry, and edited Bromine and its Compounds (Ernest Benn). In 1967 he was appointed consultant to the National Council for Research and Development in the Israeli Prime Minister’s Office in Jerusalem, advising particularly on bromine, on which he was an established authority. He was appointed visiting professor of Applied Chemistry at the Hebrew University of Jerusalem in 1967 and full professor in 1969. In 1970, with industrialist Alberto Casali CBE, he founded and was the first Director of the Casali Institute of Applied Chemistry at the Hebrew University of Jerusalem.  He died in Jerusalem in 1971, aged 69 years.

Source: Michael Jolles (May 5, 2017)

Sources: Encyclopaedia Judaica. © 2007 The Gale Group. All Rights Reserved.