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Thomas Pritzker

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The Pillar

Thomas J Pritzker is the chairman and chief executive officer at The Pritzker Organization. The 60-year-old billionaire is the chairman and chief executive officer at Hyatt Corporation. Pritzker is the chairman of Hyatt Hotels and Resorts and The Marmon Group, Inc. Pritzker is the chairman of the Art Institute of Chicago since November 2006. Pritzker is most closely associated with the Pritzker Prize. The prize takes its name from the Pritzker family, whose international business interests are headquartered in Chicago. The Pritzkers have long been known for their support of educational, scientific, medical and cultural activities. Pritzker’s father, Jay A Pritzker, founded the prize with his wife Cindy. The international prize, which is awarded each year to a living architect for a significant achievement, was established by the Pritzker family through their Hyatt Foundation in 1979. Often referred to as “architecture’s Nobel” and “the profession’s highest honour”, it is granted annually. The award consists of $100,000 (US) and a bronze medallion. The award is conferred on the laureate at a ceremony held at an architecturally significant site throughout the world. Pritzker explains, “As native Chicagoans, it’s not surprising that our family was keenly aware of architecture, living in the birthplace of the skyscraper, a city filled with buildings designed by architectural legends such as Louis Sullivan, Frank Lloyd Wright, Ludwig Mies van der Rohe and many others.” For the past two decades, he has been active in directing archeological expeditions in the western Himalayas. Pritzker is currently an Honorary Professor at Sichuan University in China.

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