In Memoriam

Fred Malek

Fred Malek
was Founder and Chairman of Thayer Lodging Group, a private equity firm that has acquired over $3 billion of hotel assets and has consistently earned top returns for investors. Previously Mr. Malek was President and CEO of Marriott Hotels, President and CEO of Northwest Airlines, and Co-Chairman of CB Richard Ellis. In addition to his business career, Mr. Malek served as an advisor to four U.S. Presidents. He was Special Assistant to the President of the United States, and Deputy Director of the U.S. Office of Management and Budget under Presidents Nixon and Ford. He advised President Reagan as a member of the executive committee of the President’s Council on Cost Control, as a member of the President’s Commission on Private Sector Initiatives, and he served President Bush as Director of the 1988 Republican Convention, as Director of the 1990 Economic Summit of Industrialized Nations, with the lifetime rank of Ambassador.

Mr. Malek was an active philanthropist serving on the Board of the Aspen Institute where he was Chairman of the Finance Committee and member of the Executive Committee, on the Board and Executive Committee of the American-Israel Friendship League and on the Board of the George H.W. Bush Library Foundation. He was Chairman of the American Friends of the Czech Republic, among others. Mr. Malek was a graduate of West Point and the Harvard Business School, and was an Army airborne ranger serving with a special forces team in Vietnam. He resided with his wife in McLean, Virginia, and was the proud parent of two children and grandfather of five.


Vartan Gregorian

Vartan Gregorian was the twelfth president of Carnegie Corporation of New York, a grant-making institution founded by Andrew Carnegie in 1911. Prior to that position, which he assumed in June 1997, he served for nine years as the sixteenth president of Brown University and for eight years as the president of the New York Public Library. He taught European and Middle Eastern history at San Francisco State College, the University of California at Los Angeles, and the University of Texas at Austin. He was founding dean of the Faculty of Arts and Sciences at the University of Pennsylvania. Mr. Gregorian is the author of The Road to Home: My Life and Times, Islam: A Mosaic, Not A Monolith, and The Emergence of Modern Afghanistan, 1880-1946.

A Phi Beta Kappa and a Ford Foundation Foreign Area Training Fellow, Mr. Gregorian was a recipient of numerous fellowships and numerous civic and academic honors. He served on the boards of the Institute for Advanced Study, The World Trade Center Memorial Foundation, and the Library of Alexandria among others. In 1998, President Clinton awarded him the National Humanities Medal. In 2004, President Bush awarded him the Presidential Medal of Freedom, the nation’s highest civil award. In 2009, President Obama appointed him to the President’s Commission on White House Fellowships. He was born in Tabriz, Iran, of Armenian parents, receiving his elementary education in Iran and his secondary education in Lebanon. In 1956 he entered Stanford University, where he majored in history and the humanities, graduating with honors in 1958. He was awarded a Ph.D. in history and humanities from Stanford in 1964.


Graf Arco-Zinneberg

Graf Arco-Zinneberg spent his entire career investing in and managing real estate as a principal. He was President and founder of the American Asset Corporation (AAC), a real estate investment and development company in the USA headquartered in New York City. AAC specializes in the development of shopping centers, offices and industrial parks throughout the southeastern USA. The company seeks to create value by acquiring large sites at strategic locations for master-planned developments.

Riprand Graf Arco was also holding majority interest in farming, forest products, brewery, and real estate companies in Germany, Austria, and the Czech Republic. He was a member of the Intercontinental Chapter of YPO as well as associated with the Wharton Real Estate Center at The University of Pennsylvania. He was a member of the American Council on Germany and Governor of the Ditchley Park Foundation, UK. Born in Munich, Germany, Count Arco was raised in Germany and Austria. Educated in Germany, he studied architecture at the Technical University in Munich and held an Engineering and Architectural Master’s Degree. His personal interests were history and politics.


The Vaclav Havel Center