Richard Gere is internationally known as both a leading film actor and as an involved and dedicated social activist and philanthropist. For more than 25 years, he has used his success and resources to bring attention to a number of important global issues.
Mr. Gere is deeply committed to protecting the human rights of the Tibetan people. In 1987 Mr. Gere became the co-founding chairman of Tibet House in New York. He created and sponsored the International Year of Tibet in 1991, culminating in His Holiness the Dalai Lama's historic visit to New York. Upon leaving Tibet House in 1992, Mr. Gere became involved with the International Campaign for Tibet in Washington, DC and, since 1995, has served as its Board Chairman. To provide information on the Tibetan crisis, he has addressed the Senate Committee on Foreign Relations, the Congressional Human Rights Caucus, the U.S. House of Representatives, the European Parliament, and the United Nations Human Rights Commission in Geneva. In 1999, 2003 & 2007, Mr. Gere sponsored visits of His Holiness the Dalai Lama to New York City.
Mr. Gere is committed to the ongoing search for a cure for AIDS, and is especially concerned about the spread of AIDS in India and the lack of care facilities there for people living with HIV/AIDS. Mr. Gere has worked closely with the Naz Foundation, a nonprofit organization based in New Delhi. He helped the Foundation establish and then expand The AIDS Care Home, the first residential facility in India dedicated to serving women and orphaned children with AIDS. Mr. Gere is also engaged in a broader effort to help galvanize action to address the AIDS epidemic in India. He established the Delhi-based Gere Foundation India Trust in 1999 to support various humanitarian programs in India and he launched the Heroes Project in 2002 in partnership with the Avahan AIDS Initiative of the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation.
Through both the Gere Foundation and his public charity, Healing the Divide, Mr. Gere continues to be a longtime supporter of other HIV/AIDS, humanitarian aid, human rights, and cultural preservation organizations, including Amnesty International, Human Rights Watch, and Survival International, among others. Mr. Gere has been a longtime sponsor of amfAR, the Elizabeth Glaser Pediatric AIDS Foundation and Aids Research Alliance. He hosted the 1992 World AIDS Day event at the United Nations. He has been awarded honors by amfAR, Amnesty International, the Elizabeth Glaser Pediatric AIDS Foundation, the Harvard AIDS Institute, and the One X One Foundation. He is also the recipient of the Eleanor Roosevelt Humanitarian Award and the prestigious Marian Anderson Award.
Since his film career began in 1975, Mr. Gere has starred in over 40 movies. His best-known films include An Officer and a Gentleman, Days of Heaven, American Gigolo, Looking for Mr. Goodbar, Pretty Woman, Primal Fear, Unfaithful, and Chicago, for which he won a Golden Globe Award for Best Actor. Mr. Gere attended the University of Massachusetts where he was a philosophy and theater major.