A businessman's outlook, dedication to advancing the common welfare, and the considerablet importance that he attached to the acquisition of knowledge, were the underlying factors that led Moshe Schnitzer to establish a foundation for research on the Israeli economy and society at Bar-Ilan University. This decision was made with the active support and continuing encouragement of his late wife Varda.

Moshe Schnitzer was born in Chernovitz, Romania in 1921 and immigrated to Israel at the age of 13. In 1942, when he was 20 years old, circumstances forced him to discontinue his studies in history and philosophy at the Hebrew University and he began to work as a sawer in the newly developing diamond industry, which had just been established in Palestine. His progress in the sector was rapid. Before long he had become works manager and subsequently was elected chairman of the Union of Mangers and Clerks. In 1967, Moshe Schnitzer became President of the Israel Diamond Exchange, a post to which he was elected repeatedly, until his retirement in 1993. In the course of his long period as president, the exchange developed from a relatively marginal organization in the international market, to the world's largest, most modern and leading exchange. Moshe Schnitzer served as the president of the World Federation of Diamond Bourses, which plays a central role in leading the diamond exchanges throughout the world.

The widespread recognition of Moshe Schnitzer is to be seen in the many public positions he has held and honors received. Moshe Schnitzer has served as chairman of the Harry Oppenheimer Diamond Museum, life-time honorary president of the Israel Diamond Exchange, life-time honorary president of the World Federation of Diamond Bourses and a director of Bank Leumi (1988-1998). He was awarded an honorary doctorate from Bar-Ilan University, in appreciation of the diamond industry's contribution to the Israeli economy and to increasing exports. He was decorated with the Order of Leopold I, one of the leading royal orders in Belgium, in recognition of his activities for the promotion of the diamond industry in Israel and in Belgium; he received a special award for his life work from the US diamond industry. In 2004 Mr Moshe Schnitzer was awarded the Israel Prize for lifetime achievement in recognition of his contribution to Israeli society and the state.

He passed away in August 2007, at the age of 86.