Richard Byles, Kevin Hendrickson to receive 2019 AMCHAM awards

Thursday, October 31, 2019

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BANK of Jamaica Governor Richard Byles and entrepreneur Kevin Hendrickson will be the two awardees at the American Chamber of Commerce of Jamaica (AMCHAM) Awards Business and Civic Leadership Gala on November 12.

Byles will receive the 2019 Lifetime Achievement Award, which recognises individuals who have made considerable and lasting contributions to economic and social progress in Jamaica through ethical leadership and community-building activities, while Hendrickson will receive the President's Award, which is given to a distinguished business leader and philanthropist who has made significant contributions to Jamaica's development.

“Mr Hendrickson has played an integral role in the development of the hospitality sector, as well as the food industry through his involvement in several hotel properties and Baking Enterprise Limited,” said AMCHAM President Ann-Dawn Young Sang.

She added: “Mr Hendrickson is one of those persons who prefers to work out of the spotlight, but his involvement and influence have been tremendous, and it is for these reasons the decision was made to name him as the president's awardee for 2019. He is truly an unsung hero.”

Hendrickson started working in the hospitality industry in 1981 as general manager of the Courtleigh Hotel, which was then located on Trafalgar Road.

Over the years, his astute business sense led him to acquire what is now known as Knutsford Court Hotel, Jamaica Pegasus, the former Wyndham Hotel, Holiday Inn Resort in Montego Bay, The Courtleigh Hotel & Suites, and Courtleigh Corporate Centre.

His hotel portfolio is just under 1,500 rooms.

At the same time, Hendrickson moved to expand his footprint in the baking industry with the acquisition of the Dr Lushus bakery in Old Harbour, joining his Yummy and Holsum bakeries.

A graduate of St Leo University and Campion College, Hendrickson firmly believes in giving back to the community and supports several charitable organisations and causes.

He is deputy chairman of the Tourism Linkages Council and sits on the President's Council of his alma mater, St Leo University.

Byles, who was born in Kingston, holds a BSc in Economics from The University of the West Indies, Mona, and an MSc in National Development from the University of Bradford, England.

He was awarded the Doctor of Humane Letters from Northern Caribbean University, and the Doctor of Business from the University College of the Caribbean.

Before being appointed as Bank of Jamaica governor in August, Byles served as chairman of Sagicor Group Jamaica Limited, following 13 successful years at the helm of Sagicor Group Jamaica as president and chief executive officer (CEO).

Byles also served as president and CEO at PanJam Investment Limited for 13 years prior to his tenure at Sagicor.

He was also chairman of several other boards, including Desnoes and Geddes Limited (Red Stripe Jamaica), and a director on others, including PanJam Investment Limited.

Byles' public sector service also includes the role as the first co-chairman of Jamaica's landmark Economic Programme Oversight Committee.

“Mr Byles is a true reflection of a successful business person who epitomises transformational leadership,” said Gillian Haughton, CEO of AMCHAM.

“His humility and quiet way of getting things done in a no-nonsense manner, have resulted in the positive turnaround of several Jamaican organisations. He was chosen as the 2019 awardee from a list of other nominees, however, his stellar contribution to national development, shrewd business sense, and community involvement made him the top choice,” added Haughton.


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