Proud wife and husband, Verle Seymour and Kingston Restoration Company's Executive Director Morin Seymour, after he was honoured by alma mater Pepperdine University.
KINGSTON RESTORATION Company's (KRC) Executive Director Morin Seymour was recently lauded by his alma mater, Pepperdine University in California.
He received the Distinguished Alumnus Award for his commitment to service. Pepperdine is a Christian university committed to the highest academic excellence and Christian values.
Mr. Seymour attended Pepperdine's Graziado School of Business and Management, receiving his bachelor's degree in 1971 and his MBA the following year.
"It was in the late '60s, it was difficult times. But the school took you in as a family member ... and gave you tremendous courses," he reflected with The Gleaner. He remembered what it was like being one of a handful of black students at the time. He beamed at the fact that his school was now one of the top rated in the United States, and that they had honoured him in such a manner.
"I'm proud of them and they're proud of me," he laughs. The Graziado School's tenet is for its students to have a higher purpose for business practice than just shareholder wealth. Mr. Seymour's work with the KRC epitomises this stance as the organisation seeks to create a sustainable economic and social environment in the inner cities.
A MANDATE TO REHABILITATE
He started his exemplary work with the KRC in 1985 when he was approached with the mandate to rehabilitate a depressed area of downtown Kingston. This led him to the United States Agency for International Development (USAID) where he struck a deal that if he could garner monetary private sector support, USAID would provide the rest. This move spawned the Inner Kingston Development Project.
In an interview with Graziado's director of alumni and career resources, Mr. Seymour revealed on the school's website that graduating from Pepperdine was his greatest achievement.
"In 1971, when I earned my first degree from Pepperdine, there weren't many scholarships for business schools. As a foreign student ... I competed for and earned one of the few scholarships available. My MBA put me on a trajectory which has led to me to what I'm doing now."
Mr. Seymour is a former managing director of the National Housing Trust and still serves another alma mater, Excelsior Community College, as chairman of the management committee. He is on The Gleaner's board of directors, an active Kiwanian and chairman of Peace And Love in Society (PALS) organisation.