2021 Awards

Tourism for Peace Award: Gerard "Jerry" Inzerillo

The recipient of WANGO's first Tourism for Peace Award is hospitality visionary Gerard “Jerry” Inzerillo, CEO of the Diriyah Gate Development Authority and Vice Chairman of Forbes Travel Guide. Mr. Inzerillo received the award from WANGO Chairman Dr. Taj Hamad on June 9, 2021 at a ceremony in Saudi Arabia.

Mr. Inzerillo's 50-year career in the hospitality industry includes serving as a leading executive at Kerzner Hotels and Resorts, where he was a key figure in desegregating the Sun City resort in apartheid-era South Africa. Former South African President and Nobel Peace Prize winner Nelson Mandela would go on to become one of Mr. Inzerillo's closest friends.

Mr. Inzerillo now serves as the CEO of the Diriyah Gate Development Authority. Diriyah, the ancestral home of the Saudi royal family with a UNESCO World Heritage Site at its heart, is being reimagined as a major tourist destination that will allow unprecedented access to and understanding of the cultural, political, and religious dynamics of the Arab and Muslim world.

In his personal life, Mr. Inzerillo has long been involved with philanthropy, especially with respect to children, education and HIV/AIDS. He was honored with a Knighthood by the Knights of Malta in Rome, Italy, in 1996 and is a founding advisory board member of the Clinton HIV/AIDS initiative.

In presenting the Tourism for Peace Award to Mr. Inzerillo, Dr. Hamad recognized Mr. Inzerillo's vision to see the power of hospitality to promote peace and understanding between people and to transform the world.

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