Pfizer CEO donates $1 million to Thessaloniki Holocaust Museum

Pfizer CEO Albert Burla donated the $1 million he received as a 2022 Genesis Award winner to the Holocaust Museum in Greece, which is being built in his hometown of Thessaloniki.

The $1 million annual Genesis Prize, dubbed the “Jewish Nobel Prize” by Time magazine, honors outstanding individuals for their professional achievements, contribution to humanity, commitment to Jewish values ​​and the State of Israel.

Burla was announced as the recipient of the award in Jerusalem on Wednesday at a gala event attended by Israeli dignitaries, government ministers, business and philanthropic leaders, as well as prominent members of the Jewish diaspora and leading members of the global medical community.

“Albert Burle was not stopped by high stakes, naysayers, conspiracy theories or politics. He believed in the vaccine and put every ounce of himself into realizing what at the time seemed like a far-fetched fantasy.”Israeli President Isaac Herzog said, adding that “a vaccine has been developed at record speed, using tomorrow’s technologies, to successfully contain a devastating pandemic.”

“I am honored and deeply honored to receive the Genesis Award. Because I never aspired to fame and never thought that one day I would be here with illustrious nominees and former laureates – artists, philanthropists and statesmen who show the world the best of the Jewish people, “Burla said.

He added that he was “humiliated because this is not my award – it belongs to all the colleagues at Pfizer who worked tirelessly in the midst of a global pandemic to make the “impossible possible” and give the world a chance to return to normal.”

Burla was born in Thessaloniki and is a member of the city’s Jewish community, whose roots go back to the 15th century, when Jews fleeing persecution from Spain settled in the city.

Of the approximately 50,000 people in the community, almost 45,000 were deported to the Auschwitz-Birkenau death camp complex in occupied Poland, where only a few hundred survived.

Israeli singer-songwriter Yehuda Poliker, whose parents, like those of Burla, were Holocaust survivors and were deported from Thessaloniki to Auschwitz, performed at the ceremony.

According to Reuters, Pfizer has made at least $65 billion from the vaccine. With such income of the company, the CEO cannot share some million not comme il faut.

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