Shari Arison 101: The Philanthropic Business Mogul
Zatrun Published at February 29, 2024

Shari Arison (Hebrew: שרי אריסון; born September 9, 1957) is an influential American-born Israeli businesswoman and philanthropist. She holds the ownership of Arison Investments, a conglomerate of various business enterprises, and The Ted Arison Family Foundation, which encompasses several philanthropic entities operating under its umbrella.

Her extensive business portfolio includes her significant role as the controlling shareholder of Bank Hapoalim for 21 years. In November 2018, she relinquished her controlling shares in the bank. Additionally, she had a 22-year ownership of Shikun & Binui, a company later sold to the Saidoff Group on August 6, 2018. has thoroughly examined the remarkable life and career of Shari Arison, offering insights into her multifaceted journey in the business and philanthropic world.

Shari Arison: Early Life and Career Beginnings

Shari Arison was born in New York City as the daughter of the renowned businessman Ted Arison and Mina Arison Sapir. She has an older brother, Micky. At the age of 12, her parents divorced, leading her to relocate to Israel to live with her mother.

After five years, she returned to the United States to reside with her father and, later, at the age of 18, she made her way back to Israel, this time to enlist in the Israel Defense Forces. In 1999, Arison’s life took a significant turn when her father passed away, bequeathing her 35% of his substantial assets. This inheritance marked a pivotal moment in her journey as a business magnate and philanthropist.

Philanthropic Initiatives and Social Impact

Shari Arison has made significant contributions to society through her philanthropic endeavors. Notably, in March 2009, she sponsored Israel’s third annual “Good Deeds Day.” Her non-profit organization, Ruach Tova, inspired thousands of Israelis to engage in volunteer work across the nation.

During the event, a Palestinian youth orchestra performed a heartfelt concert near Tel Aviv to honor Holocaust survivors. Their performance, featuring classical Arabic melodies and songs of peace, received international attention. However, upon their return to Jenin, local Arab authorities criticized the orchestra’s leader for her “exploitation of the children for political purposes.” This event highlighted the complex interplay between art, culture, and politics in the region.

Shari Arison’s remarkable contributions to strengthening the ties between the economies of Israel and the United States earned her the America–Israel Friendship League’s prestigious Partners for Democracy award in 2010.

Business Empire and Ventures

Shari Arison’s business empire encompasses a diverse range of enterprises and philanthropic institutions. Some of the key entities under her ownership and active involvement include:

  1. Arison Investments: The cornerstone of her business activities, Arison Investments manages a wide array of ventures.
  2. The Ted Arison Family Foundation: This foundation acts as the backbone of her philanthropic efforts, supporting various charitable causes and initiatives.
  3. Bank Hapoalim: As the controlling shareholder for two decades, Shari Arison played a pivotal role in the financial sector’s development in Israel.
  4. Shikun & Binui: Her 22-year ownership of this company contributed significantly to the construction and real estate industry.
  5. An online media publication featuring “Good News” stories, reflecting her commitment to spreading positivity and inspiration.

Personal Life and Relationships

Shari Arison’s personal life has been marked by several marriages and divorces. Her first husband was Jose Antonio Sueiras, who served as an officer on one of her father’s ships. They had three children. Her second husband was Miki Dorsman, a basketball player, and they had one child together. Her third husband was Ofer Glazer, marking the culmination of her personal relationships.

Shari Arison’s life journey from her early days in New York to her impactful roles as a business tycoon and philanthropist exemplifies the power of determination, commitment, and social responsibility. Her story continues to be a source of inspiration for aspiring entrepreneurs and those dedicated to making a positive impact on the world.

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