Henry Crown Leadership Award

The Henry Crown Leadership Award was created to honor an outstanding leader whose achievements reflect the high standards of honor, integrity, industry, and philanthropy that characterized the life and career of Henry Crown. The award is presented annually by the Trustee of the Henry and Gladys Crown Charitable Trust Fund in cooperation with the Henry Crown Fellowship Program of the Aspen Institute.

In 2018, the Henry Crown Leadership Award was presented to Henry Crown Fellow, William (Bill) F. Browder. Bill is the Founder and CEO of Hermitage Capital Management, head of the Global Magnitsky Justice Campaign and author of Red Notice. Bill was the largest foreign investor in Russia until 2005, when he was denied entry to the country and declared “a threat to national security” for exposing corruption in Russian state-owned companies. In 2008, Bill’s lawyer, Sergei Magnitsky, uncovered a massive fraud committed by Russian government officials that involved the theft of US $230 million of state taxes. Sergei testified against the state officials involved in this fraud was arrested, imprisoned without trial, tortured and died in prison on November 16, 2009. Upon realizing that it was impossible to get justice in Russia, Bill sought justice abroad and started a global campaign for governments around the world to impose targeted visa bans and asset freezes on human rights abusers and highly corrupt officials. The United States passed the Sergei Magnitsky Act in 2012, followed by the Global Magnitsky Act in 2016. Since then, Canada, Estonia, Latvia, Lithuania and Gibraltar have passed their own versions of the Magnitsky Act. Similar legislations are currently being developed in countries.

Past recipients of the award include:

  • 2017 Walter Isaacson, Professor of History at Tulane University and former President and CEO of the Aspen Institute
  • 2016 Robert K. Steel, partner and CEO of Perella Weinberg Partners and former Deputy Mayor for Economic Development for the City of New York
  • 2015 General (ret.) Stanley McChrystal, former Commander of the International Security Assistance Force and Commander of United States Forces Afghanistan
  • 2014 Reed Hastings, Founder and CEO, Netflix
  • 2013 Wynton Marsalis, Managing and Artistic Director, Jazz at Lincoln Center
  • 2012 Gabrielle Giffords, former U.S. Representative
  • 2011 Madeleine K. Albright, Chair, The Albright Stonebridge Group and former United States Secretary of State
  • 2010 Vartan Gregorian, President, Carnegie Corporation of New York
  • 2009 Jeffrey Bezos, President, CEO, and Chairman of the Board of Amazon.com
  • 2008 William Mayer, Partner, Park Avenue Equity Partners and former Chairman of the Aspen Institute Board of Trustees
  • 2007 No award was presented in 2007
  • 2006 Condoleezza Rice, former United States Secretary of State
  • 2005 William Budinger, Founder, Rodel Inc.
  • 2004 Michael Powell, former Chairman of the Federal Communications Commission, and member of the TripleCrown Class of Henry Crown Fellows. Michael was the first Henry Crown Fellow to receive this award
  • 2003 Patty Stonesifer, Co-Chair and President of the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation
  • 2002 Jimmy Carter, thirty-ninth president of the United States
  • 2001 Dr. William J. Perry, professor at Stanford University, senior fellow at the Hoover Institution, and co-director of the Preventative Defense Project. Among his many accomplishments, Dr. Perry served as the 19th Secretary of Defense for the United States from 1994 to 1997.
  • 2000 Sen. George J. Mitchell, former Majority Leader of the United States Senate
  • 1999 Gen. Colin L. Powell, USA (Ret.), founding chairman of America’s Promise – The Alliance for Youth and former U.S. Secretary of State
  • 1998 Norman R. Augustine, former vice chairman and chief executive officer of Lockheed Martin Corporation and Professor at Princeton University
  • 1997 Robert W. Galvin, chairman of the executive committee of Motorola, Inc.