Passing the baton
Daviot Kelly, Staff Reporter
Smooth changeovers lead to success, whether on the track or in business.
At Carreras Limited, Michael Bernard has successfully handed the metaphoric baton to Richard Pandohie as the new managing director. The analogy is appropriate since both men attended track powerhouses (Bernard, a Jamaica College old boy and Pandohie, a Calabar alum).
Guests from various sectors turned out at the Terra Nova All Suite Hotel on Wednesday to say goodbye and hello, respectively. Danielle Chow, who has worked closely with both men, called Bernard a source of inspiration and a symbol of honesty, integrity and humility. Of Pandohie, she opined that he had the talent to take up where Bernard had left off, and had already showed the right qualities of a leader. Among other points in his citation, Bernard was lauded for enhancing Carreras' corporate citizenship, for improving shareholders' value despite selling controversial products and for leading the company through various reconstruction periods.
Bernard said stepping down was the end of an era for him and that his tenure was a "mutually rewarding journey". Always the joker, he said he had left Pandohie with just one instruction - to maintain the company's value so all stakeholders, especially the pensioners (a group he was now a member of) would benefit. Pandohie, possessing a knack for comedy himself, said that in cricket terms, Bernard had put so many runs on the board, he could just declare now. Still, he promised to stay true to Carreras' goals and to continue investing in areas such as youth development and the security forces.
Guests out included Security Minister Dwight Nelson, Education Minister Andrew Holness, Shahine Robinson, Derrick Smith, Dr Peter Phillips, Dr Morais Guy, K.D. Knight, John Junor, Police Commissioner Owen Ellington, R. Danny Williams, Earl Moore, Dickie Crawford, Carole Beckford, Stewart Stephenson, Rajiv Bakshi and Dorothea Gordon-Smith, Hyacinth Bennett and Tarun Handa.