The Jewish American entrepreneur - Mr. Sheldon Adelson received an honorary award for innovation and excellence in global tourism. The award was presented by the Minister of Tourism, Dr. Uzi Landau at the Second Jerusalem International Tourism Summit which took place on May 28th at the International Congress Center, ICC, in Jerusalem. Adelson received the award for his unprecedented and innovative contributions to global tourism. The Second Jerusalem International Tourism Summit of 2013 is initiated by the Prime Minister's Office, the Ministry of Tourism, the Jerusalem Municipality and the Jerusalem Development Authority in cooperation with the Hebrew University and the Jerusalem International Convention Center.
Mr. Adelson, the Chairman of the Las Vegas Sands, is the head of an empire attracting close to a billion tourists a year. It includes successful projects in Las Vegas, Pennsylvania, Macau and many more. He has invested over 30 billion dollars in tourism projects across the globe and has changed tourism in three continents. Among many of his prominent achievements is the challenging of the status quo metrix by innovating and creating integrated resorts based also on MICE, meetings, incentives, conventions and commercial exhibitions by building the only and largest in the world integrated resorts, he increased tourism by many percentages in the United States, China, with the full support and cooperation with Macau and China Governments and Singapore. The Cotai Strip that he built on the swamps of the edge of Macau became a major attraction that brings millions of tourists to the island. The company he created and he is chairing Las Vegas Sands, became one of Wall Street 500 biggest companies. The company currently employs directly 35 thousand team members and hundreds of thousands more are being employed in an indirect way. Las Vegas Sands and Sands China, the daughter company are getting now the approval of the Macau government to build more projects.
“Whether it was operating a charter airline business, creating the COMDEX tradeshow for the computer industry or developing iconic integrated resorts in the U.S. and Asia, I have dedicated a substantial part of my business career to the tourism industry and it is always humbling and rewarding to have my contributions to the industry recognized with awards such as this,” said Sheldon G. Adelson, chairman and chief executive officer of Las Vegas Sands Corp. "It is especially meaningful to meet personally when it is being given to me in our eternal City of Jerusalem, the spirit and soul of the Jewish People.”
Dr. Miriam and Mr. Sheldon Adelson are highly regarded philanthropists and generous supporters of Israel and Zionism. Over the years they have contributed over one billion NIS to numerous organizations in Israel emphasizing in education and people. The two have contributed 50 million dollars to "Yad Vashem", about three million dollars to the Hadassah Hospital and the Adelson Medical Foundation, 4.5 million dollars to the Shalem Insitute in Jerusalem and have announced a donation of 20 million NIS to the IDC in Herzliya. Even more, the Adelson's are two of the key contributors to the Taglit Birthright Israel program, considered the most successful Zionism projects in the world. Since its foundation in 2000, the free 10-day program has brought over 360,000 young Jewish adults from over 60 countries. The Adelson's have contributed over 210 million dollars to the project where 37 million of this has been invested in Jerusalem. In addition, the Adelson family has significantly contributed to Jewish education across the United States.
Mr. Adelson was born in the United States to Jewish immigrants and will be celebrating his 80th birthday this year. He has been awarded by many organizations including:
AGA Gaming Hall of Fame (2011) by the American Gaming Association
G2E Asia Visionary Award (2011) by the Global Gaming Expo Asia (G2E Asia)
HICAP Innovation Award (2010) by the Hotel Investment Conference Asia Pacific (HICAP)
Theodor Herzl Gold Medallion (2009) by the Zionist Organization of America
Woodrow Wilson Award for Corporate Citizenship (2008) by the Woodrow Wilson International Center for Scholars of the Smithsonian Institution
Appointed to the Advisory Committee for Trade Policy and Negotiations (2008) by the Office of the U.S. Trade Representative, to name a few
“We are deeply honored to be presented with Honorary Citizenship by the city of Jerusalem. It means a lot to both of us,” said Dr. Miriam Adelson. “Jerusalem is the heart and soul of the Jewish people, whose residents have included prophets and kings who changed the world,” added Mr. Adelson. “To be presented with honorary citizenship of this ancient city is no small accolade, and we are truly thankful.”
Minister of Tourism, Dr. Uzi Landau: "Hundreds of thousands of Jews from around the world have come to Israel over the last decade thanks to the work of Mr. Adelson. Especially during turbulent times like these in the Middle East and with worldwide anti-Semitism on the rise, we must hold strong to the relationship between Diaspora Jews and Israel. Jewish youth from around the world are given an important opportunity: to be introduced to Israel, fall in love with the country and strengthen the connection for the benefit of future generations-a priceless present to our country. Mr. Adelson is a Zionist through and through, and his contribution to Israel, Jewish Youth across the globe and his Zionism are just a few of the most significant points. There is no one more earning than him to receive the Lifetime Achievement award. "
Photo caption (right to left): Chairman of the Jerusalem Development Authority, Moshe Lion, Minister of Tourism of the State of Israel, Dr. Uzi Landau, Mayor of Jerusalem, Nir Barkat, Dr. Miriam Adelson, Chairman and CEO of Las Vegas Sands Corporation, Mr. Sheldon Adelson, Taglit-Birthright participants