Held by ECPAT-USA, the Freedom Awards bring together a highly selective group of 200 luminaries in the corporate, philanthropic, government, and media communities in support of ECPAT-USA’s vital work to ensure no child is bought or sold. The highlight of the evening is the recognition of the world’s most remarkable individuals for their contributions in ending child trafficking.
Arne M. Sorenson
President and CEO, Marriott International
“We are immensely proud to support ECPAT-USA and to take a stand against human trafficking and child sexual exploitation. Trained on the signs of human trafficking and empowered to say something if they see something, Marriott associates are passionate about making a difference in this fight. Child sexual exploitation is a horrifying daily tragedy that no one can afford to ignore — and the hospitality and tourism industry has a unique opportunity to do something about it.”
Arne M. Sorenson is President and Chief Executive Officer of Marriott International, Inc. Mr. Sorenson presides over one of the world’s largest hospitality companies and some of the most iconic brands in travel.
Mr. Sorenson led the acquisition of Starwood Hotels & Resorts Worldwide in 2016, resulting in a dramatic expansion of Marriott’s ability to provide unparalleled guest experiences around the world. The company now has more than 7,000 properties across 130 countries and territories and 30 brands. The merger also created the travel industry’s largest customer-loyalty program, with nearly 125 million members. An outspoken corporate leader, he has advocated for environmental sustainability, a more open, safe and inclusive workplace, a welcoming culture around the world and a future in which international travel is revolutionized with a global digital identification system.
Mr. Sorenson joined Marriott in 1996 and held a number of positions before serving as President and Chief Operating Officer. He was elected to Marriott’s Board of Directors in 2011. He became Chief Executive Officer in 2012, making history as the first person to hold the post without the Marriott family name.
With a keen interest in international trade, immigration and innovation, Mr. Sorenson is active on multiple boards. He joined the Microsoft board of directors in November 2017. He is also a member of the Business Roundtable. He serves on the board of trustees for The Brookings Institution, the board of directors for Warrior-Scholar Project and as a member of the Luther College Board of Regents.
Mr. Sorenson is a graduate of Luther College in Decorah, Iowa, and the University of Minnesota Law School. Before joining Marriott, he was a partner with the law firm Latham & Watkins in Washington, D.C.