A lesbian executive in Hong Kong, who became internet-famous in 2014 after her billionaire dad offered millions to anyone who can marry her, topped a recent review of leading LGBTQ persons of authority in worldwide organizations.
According to OUTstanding, the list seeks to give recognition to senior executives from the LGBTQ community who actively work to create a more welcoming environment for LGBTQ employees. The awarding committee used the following criteria to narrow down the finalists from hundreds who qualified:
- Activities undertaken to make the workplace a more welcoming place.
- Activities a nominee is involved with outside of the workplace that help to achieve positive change for LGBT+ people.
- Recent business achievements.
- Seniority and influence in the business.
Gigi Chao, daughter of Hong Kong real estate mogul Cecil Chao, is an outspoken activist who has shared her experiences being a lesbian working in the corporate world. As one of the founding members of LGBTQ non-profit charity organization Big Love Alliance, she has contributed heavily in promoting equal rights for the community.
Chao was a viral news item back in 2012 after her father offered $64. 5 million to any man willing to marry his daughter after learning she married her longtime partner, Sean Eav, abroad. Her dad would double the offer two years later in 2014. The infamous “wedding bounty” attracted thousands of suitors worldwide, placing Chao in the international spotlight.
In response, she wrote an open letter featured in South China Morning Post, asking her dad to accept her as a lesbian and treat her spouse as a “normal, dignified human being.” While her dad ultimately dropped the bounty and stated that he respected his daughter’s decisions, he has remained opposed to welcoming his daughter’s wife into the family, according to Daily Mail.