Sultan bin Salman Al Saud
|Sultan bin Salman bin Abdulaziz Al Saud|
27 June 1956 |
Riyadh, Saudi Arabia
|Alma mater||Syracuse University|
|House||House of Saud|
|Rank||Colonel, Royal Saudi Air Force|
Time in space
|7d 01h 38m|
Sultan bin Salman bin Abdulaziz Al Saud (Arabic: سلطان بن سلمان بن عبد العزيز آل سعود) (born 27 June 1956) is a former Royal Saudi Air Force pilot who flew aboard the American STS-51-G Space Shuttle mission as a payload specialist, and a member of the House of Saud. He is thus the first member of a royal family to be an astronaut, and the first Arab and Muslim to fly in outer space.
Early life and education
Sultan was born in Riyadh on 27 June 1956. He is the second son of King Salman. His older brother Fahd was born 20 July 1955 and died in 2000. His mother is Sultana bint Turki Al Sudairi who died in July 2011. She was a daughter of King Salman's uncle, Turki bin Ahmed Al Sudairi, who was one of the former governors of al-Jouf, Jizan and Asir Province and was a participant in the unification campaign under His cousin, the founder of the Kingdom Abdulaziz ibn Saud. and Prince Sultan is a full brother of Fahd, Ahmed, Abdulaziz, Faisal and Hassa (born 1974).
Sultan bin Salman started his career in 1982 as a researcher in the department of international communications at the Ministry of Information in Saudi Arabia. His tenure lasted until 1984. He served as deputy director of the Saudi media committee for the Saudi athletes participating in the 1984 Summer Olympics in Los Angeles. Later that year, the department of TV advertising was created at the Ministry of Information, and he was appointed its acting director.
From 17 June through 24 June 1985, he flew as a payload specialist on STS-51-G Discovery. As one of a seven-member international crew, which also included American and French astronauts, he represented the Arab Satellite Communications Organization (ARABSAT) in deploying their satellite, ARABSAT-1B. Sultan also holds the record for being the youngest person to fly on the Space Shuttle, at the age of 28.
Later, he assisted in establishing the Association of Space Explorers, an international organization comprising all astronauts and cosmonauts who have been in space, and served on its executive board of directors for several years.
In 1985, Sultan recorded a commercial message that was broadcast on MTV during the Live Aid concert event. His message mentioned his recent trip on the Space Shuttle and was one of 33 such by notable individuals including Caesar Chavez, Coretta Scott King, Carl Sagan, Jesse Jackson and Peter Ueberroth. Sultan bin Salman served in the Royal Saudi Air Force beginning in 1985 and held the rank of lieutenant colonel. He retired from the air force in 1996 with the rank of colonel.
Since 2009 Sultan bin Salman has served as the President and Chairman of the Board with the rank of a Minister of the Saudi Commission for Tourism & National Heritage (SCTH). He had served as the Commission's Secretary General since its inception in 2000. It is claimed that as Secretary-General, he contributed significantly to the improvement of Saudi Arabia's tourism and national heritage strategy, and organizational building and innovation in the Saudi government.
- Honorary Chairman for the Saudi Society for Archeological Studies, King Saud University
- Vice-Chairman of the Historic Jeddah Development Committee (UNESCO World Heritage Site)
- Chairman of the Advisory Committee for the King Saud University College of Tourism and Antiquities
- Member of the Board of Directors and Executive Committee, Chairman of the Riyadh King Khaled International Airport (KKIA) Development Board – General Authority of Civil Aviation (GACA) 2008 – 2012
- Chairman of the Board of Directors, the Disabled Children's Association (DCA), KSA since 1988.
- Co-Founder and Chairman of the Board of Trustees, King Salman Center for Disability Research (KSCDR), KSA.
- Founder and President, Al Turath, KSA (an organization dedicated to the preservation and development of Saudi national heritage)
- Founder and Chairman of the Board, Saudi Aviation Club
- Chairman of the Board of Trustees, The King Salman Science Oasis (A science center and museum)
- Founding Member and Member of the Board, The Graduates Society of Model Institute of the Capital Schools, Riyadh, KSA
- Member of the Supreme Committee for the Development of Al-Dir'iyyah (a UNESCO World Heritage site) Ad-Diriyah, KSA
- Member of the Board of Directors and Member of the Committee of the Center for the History of Makkah, King AbdulAziz Foundation for Research and Archives, KSA
- Chairman of the Executive Committee, Princess Hassa Al Sudairi Charitable Foundation
- Chairman of the Riyadh Social Responsibility Council, Riyadh Chamber of Commerce 2008 – 2010
Regarding the connections between the state and the people, he argued that "Every citizen of this country is a responsible person. Here the state is the citizen and the citizen is the state. There is no division between the leadership and the citizens." He believes in building partnerships in all that is accomplished and have always advocated the importance of the role of local communities.
Sultan bin Salman is married to Princess Haifa, daughter of Prince Saud bin Faisal, the late minister of foreign affairs of Saudi Arabia. They have three children. His son, Salman (born 1990), attended St. Andrew's University in Scotland and Oxford University  and married a daughter of Prince Khalid bin Saud Al Saud, a great-grandson of Mohammed bin Abdul Rahman, the brother of King Abdulaziz in Riyadh on 5 December 2012. His Daughter (born 1994) also attended St Andrews University.
He enjoys flying, gliding, skiing and nature in his spare time.
Sultan owns a farm in Diriyah which is a model of modern facilities in a historical setting. His farm reflects his attempt to retrace the origins of the Al Saud family, and to document the Al Saud's claims over the Najd.
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Sultan received the following awards/recognition:
UNWTO Award in recognition of His significant contribution to the development of tourism in the Middle East and His outstanding commitment to the global vision and work of the World Tourism Organization. Presented at the 22nd Session of the UNWTO General Assembly held in Chengdu, China on 12 September 2017
Arabic Leadership Award in the Care of Disabled presented by the Arab Hospital Federation on December 2015
Creativity Award presented by the Souq Okaz Higher Committee on January 2015
Harvard University named Sultan bin Salman as the Chief Representative of the Arabian Region and the Middle East in Tourism Leaders program on October 2014
Middle East Municipalities Award in Cultural & Heritage Preservation presented by the Institute of Middle East Excellence Awards on 16 October 2014
King Leopold Medal was awarded to Sultan on 26 January 2014 by the order of King Philip of Belgium in recognition for contribution in strengthening relations between Saudi Arabia and Belgium, especially in the field of archaeology.
Leadership Award presented by the Arab Hotel Investment Conference (AHIC) on 4 May 2014.
CEO KSA Award for Tourism & Hospitality presented by the Arabian Budiness Magazine on 2012.
|Ancestors of Sultan bin Salman Al Saud|
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- "Royal Family Directory". www.datarabia.com. Archived from the original on 18 March 2016. Retrieved 22 June 2017.
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