Gerald Lawless started his career with Forte Hotels, which culminated in him setting up and growing Forte’s operations in the Middle East. After a 23-year career with Forte Hotels, he joined Jumeirah in 1997 and helped establish it as one of the premier luxury hotel brands in the world. Taking on the challenge of launching Burj Al Arab, the world’s most luxurious hotel, after the successful introduction of Jumeirah Beach Hotel to an eager travelling public, Mr. Lawless went on to become President and Group Chief Executive Officer of the Jumeirah Group. At the beginning of 2016, Mr. Lawless assumed a new leadership position responsible for tourism and hospitality in Dubai Holding, the Group’s parent company.
Mr. Lawless has been Chairman of WTTC since 2016. He has been a Member of the World Travel & Tourism Council since 2005, sitting on the Executive Committee since 2008, and as Vice Chairman since 2012.
Mr. Lawless is a Graduate of Shannon College of Hotel Management in Ireland and holds an Honorary Degree of Doctor of Business Administration in Hospitality Management from the Johnson & Wales University, State of Rhode Island, USA; an Honorary Degree of Doctor of Laws from the National University of Ireland, Galway; and an Honorary Doctorate from the Middlesex University Dubai.