Lifetime Achievement Award

Kerry Simon

Kerry Simon, photographed at home with his dog, Cosmo, on January 15, 2014. | Photo by Anthony Mair

Kerry Simon, photographed at home with his dog, Cosmo, on January 15, 2014. | Photo by Anthony Mair

Simon was a rock-star chef before he moved to Las Vegas in 1997, and his accomplishments span the globe. But his work in his adopted hometown alone is sufficient to earn him this award. In 1998, Simon opened Jean-Georges Vongerichten’s Prime, part of the Bellagio restaurant program that put Las Vegas on the culinary map. His move from haute cuisine to approachable comfort food at the Hard Rock Hotel was revolutionary, and although he relocated his namesake restaurant to Palms Place in 2008, his Sunday brunch there remains a Las Vegas institution. What’s more, his recently opened Carson Kitchen is already proving to be a game changer for Downtown dining. Through it all, and even as he battles a life-threatening illness, Simon has remained a tireless supporter of countless charitable causes—a community hero. It’s hard to think of another chef who’s had such a positive impact on our Valley. Our toque’s off to you, Chef.