Joseph J Gaggero CBE was a long-standing member and supporter of Chatham House. From his base in Gibraltar he developed and built business interests including Gibraltar Airways, GB Airways, Blands Travel and the Bland Group. He worked throughout his career to promote closer relations between Gibraltar, Spain, Morocco and the UK and was passionate in his support for greater global understanding and dialogue.
His interest in international affairs was underlined by his membership since 1997 of Chatham House where he was a frequent and popular visitor and contributor. It was a gift from the Gaggero Foundation – an independent private charitable body established by the Gaggero family through the Bland Group – that made possible the 2008 renovation of Chatham House’s conference hall, which was renamed the Joseph Gaggero Hall. Guests and speakers who pass through the hall's entrance can read Joe's maxim: 'Let us come together to talk and listen for the good of all mankind.'
In 1989 Joe Gaggero was made a Commander of the British Empire in recognition of his services to the causes and charities he supported. His peers in the airline industry awarded him the Air League’s Founder’s Medal, and he was inducted into the Hall of Fame: Travel and Hospitality Industry in 2007. He received the Royal Order of the Polar Star (Sweden) in 1991 and the Royal Order Al-Alaoui (Morocco) in 2006 and published his autobiography Running with the Baton in 2005.