Rolex has announced the five pioneers who have earned the title of Laureate of the Rolex Awards for Enterprise for their bold, visionary projects that have the potential to help reinvent the future.
Among the five men and women who hail from around the globe – from Brazil, Chad, Nepal, the United Kingdom and the United States – are a marine scientist, conservationist, polar explorer, social entrepreneur, and a geographer and climate advocate.
The Rolex Awards were set up 45 years ago to mark the 50th anniversary of the world’s first waterproof wristwatch, the Oyster. Through the programme, the company supports exceptional individuals with innovative projects that expand our knowledge of the world, protect the environment – helping to preserve habitats and species – and improve human well-being. The Rolex Awards are one of the three pillars of the Rolex Perpetual Planet initiative dedicated to supporting those who contribute to a better world. For now, the initiative also embraces Sylvia Earle’s Mission Blue programme to preserve the oceans and an enhanced association with National Geographic, a Rolex partner since 1954, to understand climate change through science.
‘Rolex has long recognised its responsibility to play a part in creating a sustainable planet, a Perpetual Planet. Rather than venturing into the unknown and discovering uncharted lands, the new breed of explorers is committed to protecting the planet. The five Laureates are prime examples of these guardians of the future.’Arnaud Boetsch, Rolex Director of Communication & Image
The five Laureates will receive funding for their projects and other benefits such as worldwide publicity, which often engenders further support.
Meet the Laureates
Felix Brooks-Church, from the United States, tackles malnutrition in Tanzania through equipping rural flour mills with a ‘dosifier’ machine, which adds critical micronutrients to fortify staple foods.
Hindou Oumarou Ibrahim
Hindou Oumarou Ibrahim, from Chad, uses indigenous peoples’ traditional knowledge to map natural resources and prevent climate conflicts in the Sahel.
Rinzin Phunjok Lama
Rinzin Phunjok Lama, from Nepal, works to protect the richly diverse ecosystems of the Trans-Himalayan region, home of iconic and globally threatened mammals, by involving local communities.
Gina Moseley, from the United Kingdom, aims to lead the first expedition to explore the planet’s northernmost caves to improve our knowledge of climate change in the Arctic.
Luiz Rocha, from Brazil, works to explore and protect mesophotic coral reefs and their biodiversity in the Indian Ocean, and to strengthen conservation of these largely unknown ecosystems.
Find out more about the five winners here.