Donovan Perkins, CEO of Sagicor Investments Jamaica Limited (formerly PanCaribbean) since 1993, is regarded as one of the brightest and more prolific private-sector leaders in corporate Jamaica today. His leadership style is one that is goal and change-oriented instead of those who talk the talk and do not walk the walk.
Prior to joining (Sagicor/PanCaribbean), he worked with Bank of America in corporate banking. Under his leadership, the company has grown through a series of mergers and acquisitions into a diversified financial services group today.
Apart from his substantive duties as CEO, Perkins also serves as a director of Pan Jamaican Investment Trust Limited, Jamaica Producers Group Limited and chairman of the Jamaica Stock Exchange. Perkins has previously served as vice-president of both the Jamaica Bankers' Association and the Private Sector Organisation of Jamaica and as a director for the Jamaica Social Investment Fund, National Insurance Fund and the National Water Commission.
He is an alumnus of the University of South Florida, where he received his bachelor's degree in finance with honours; and the Darden School at the University of Virginia with an MBA with concentrations in finance and marketing.
Today, Outlook shares 10 things we did not know about the young and dynamic private-sector leader and devout family man.
1. Donovan conducted the Jamaica Military Band at Up Park Camp once. "I had no idea what I was doing, but I enjoyed it immensely!"
2. He fractured his back in a car accident in 1979 on Alligator Alley in Florida. "The vehicle rolled and plunged into a canal. I'm lucky to be walking today."
3. Twenty years later on the same road, he rescued two women from a submerged car after it landed in a lake.
4. He still arm-wrestles with his son, Alex, when he comes home from university, just to remind him who is the boss, but 2013 may very well be a year of change. "I lost the debate battle with my daughter, Jessica, a long time ago ... she's too smart."
5. Donovan is an avid mountain biker. He rides to Ivors with the Mountaineers during the week, and recently started the round trip to Port Royal and back from Sovereign with the Cutters on weekends.
6. He owes a lot to seven people who have positively influenced his life and outlook. Brenda Russell (high-school teacher); Alty McKoy (high-school coach); Gabriel (first boss); Richard Byles (current boss); Maurice Facey (first chairman); his 'bredren' John Bailey, who wisely advised him once, "Behold the turtle, it advances only when it sticks its neck out"; and, of course, Michele (my darling wife).
7. He is a big football and Manchester United fan from the 1970s, the glory days of George Best.
8. He scored a two at Caymanas Golf Club's par 5 fifteenth hole. "That's called an albatross, the rarest score on an individual hole in golf."
9. He likes the entertainment business, and would love to trade places with cousin Bambino (just for a day).10. He grew up in Kingston, but spent every summer as a child between Portland, St Mary and St Elizabeth with cousins enjoying the freedom, adventures and sweet country life.