SAJ inducts shipping icons into Hall of Fame at 83rd AGM

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The Shipping Association of Jamaica (SAJ) announced the launch of its Hall of Fame during the body’s 83rd annual general meeting (AGM) last Friday, November 26, at its head office in Newport West.

The SAJ’s re-elected president, William Brown, introduced the concept, which includes past and current members of the industry, during the hybrid meeting.

In revealing the inductees, SAJ’s Group CEO, Trevor Riley, said the men and women selected made invaluable contributions to Jamaica’s modern shipping industry.

The 34 individuals chosen represent executives, port workers and trade unionists, among others. The criteria for selection include, but is not limited to, business excellence, inspiring leadership, impact and influence. What’s more, the association’s nine founding fathers will also be inducted into the Hall of Fame.

In his acceptance address, Brown thanked the association’s members for their support, before adding that there is much work ahead for the 13-member Managing Committee which was returned en bloc. He noted that despite the challenges which lie ahead, the association remains prepared and continues to look to the future.

Returning alongside Brown on the Managing Committee, the association’s highest decision-making body, are Vice-President CorahAnn Robertson Sylvester; immediate past President Charles Johnston; and members Denise Lyn Fatt; Kim Clarke; Roger Hinds; Anna Hamilton; Andre Rochester; Mark Williams; Condell Stephenson and Riley. Both Grantley Stephenson and Michael Bernard are honourary members.

In his president’s report, Brown said serving the association over the past year has been the “true honour of my professional career,” adding that his initial tenure was not without challenges due to the ongoing pandemic and changes to the SAJ’s labour supply arrangements.

The renegotiation of the association’s labour contract with Kingston Wharves Limited (KWL) is now complete and will take effect on January 1, 2022, Brown said. He lauded the hard work of the SAJ and KWL teams which led the discussions and arrived at a satisfactory outcome for both parties.

The review of the Customs Act 2020, which is intended to repeal and replace the Act of 1941, is also a priority of the SAJ, he said, commending the continued efforts of the association, led by Agents’ Committee Chairman Anna Hamilton to represent the interests of the sector.

Brown also addressed efforts to enhance the Newport West community, which he said is making some progress. The SAJ’s Managing Committee met with Local Government and Rural Development Minister Desmond McKenzie to consider proposals for the area’s improvement earlier this year. Discussions with the relevant authorities, including the Kingston and St Andrew Municipal Corporation, are ongoing.

Before closing, he observed a moment of silence for three shipping stalwarts – Harriat Maragh, Joseph Lowe and Robert Bell – who passed this year.

The AGM was chaired by Riley, with the company’s financial statements presented by Fiona Hall, operations manager, finance.

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