The Global Wellness Summit (GWS), an annual event that attracts international leaders and visionaries, concluded its 10th anniversary conference in Tyrol, Austria by celebrating the recipients of its third annual Global Wellness Awards and the winners of its first-ever Shark Tank of Wellness student competition. More than 500 invitation-only delegates from 45 countries attended this year’s sold-out summit, which featured a gala event at the famous Swarovski Crystal Worlds with a personal welcome from Nadja Swarovski, head of corporate branding and communications and executive board member for Swarovski.
Winners for the 2016 Global Wellness Awards are:
Leader in Workplace Wellness: Fikry Isaac, M.D., former vice president of global health services for Johnson & Johnson and a pioneer in the field of workplace health promotion and global health
Leading Woman in Wellness: Belgin Aksoy, founder of Global Wellness Day
Leader in Sustainability: Balthasar Hauser, owner of Stanglwirt-Spa at Bio-Hotel Stanglwirt (Going am Wilden Kaiser, Austria)
Leader in Innovation: Richard Schmitz, CEO of H/S/M Hotel and Spa Management
Debra Simon Award for Leader in Furthering Mental Wellness: Jeremy McCarthy, group director of spa and wellness for Mandarin Oriental Hotel Group and author of “The Psychology of Spas & Wellbeing” (CreateSpace Publishing, 2013)
Shahrin Ali Raivi from North South University in Bangladesh, India, received the top Shark Tank of Wellness prize of $5,000 after competing in the live event with two other students. Raivi’s ‘Mukto Sanitary Napkin’ concept aims to reduce the health and social problems associated with Bangladesh women who currently rely on unsanitary and ineffective options such as sand, leaves, mud, and unsterilized rags by making use of materials left over from the country’s cotton industry. Regina Tarany and Svejetlana Radakovic, both from the IMC University of Applied Sciences in Krems, Austria, each received $2,500 as finalists. The judges included a panel of industry professionals: Simon Casson, president of hotel operations for Africa, Europe, and the Middle East for Four Seasons Hotels and Resorts; Tracey Chappell, senior vice president of global spa solutions for the UK at ESPA International; Jane Iredale, president and CEO of Iredale Mineral Cosmetics; Sheila McCann, general manager at Chiva-Som International Health Resort (Hua Hin, Thailand); Frank Pitsikalis, founder and CEO of ResortSuite; and Frank Strobel, director of international sales for Klafs GmbH & Co. KG.