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Gleaner Honour Awards | recipients stand out from pack

Published:Wednesday | February 1, 2017 | 12:00 AMChristopher Serju
The Gleaner's Honour awardees from left are Richard Byles, president and CEO of Sagicor Group; Rita Humphries-Lewin, founder and chairman of Barita Investment Limited and Dorothy Pine-McLarty pose with their awards at The Gleaner Honour Award Category Luncheon Yesterday.

Each year, the Gleaner Honour Awards selection committee picks individuals and entities in categories of service who have made a laudable contribution to Jamaica's development.

Yesterday, during the final awards category luncheon at The Gleaner's downtown Kingston offices, Richard Byles and Dorothy Pine-McLarty were fÍted for their respective contributions in the areas of business and public service, while Rita Humphries-Lewin received a Lifetime Achievement Award for 45 years of contribution to the business sector.

They will join other category awards recipients at a gala event slated for The Jamaica Pegasus hotel on February 20, where The Gleaner's Man of the Year for 2016 will be unveiled.


Arduous process


Yesterday, Douglas Orane, chairman of the selection committee, spoke of the arduous process of picking this year's awardees, stressing the difficulty the team faced given the high quality of nominees.

"It's a very heated process, and we focus on individuals and entities that have created some unique activity during the past year and also their effect on the future of Jamaica that differentiates them from the others, and that's really how we come up with the recipients," Orane said.

Byles, who, up to recently, co-chaired the Economic Programme Oversight Committee, has been cited by The Gleaner for having "provided outstanding and courageous leadership" that helped ensure fiscal discipline that contributed to the country's successful completion of the four-year- economic support programme with the International Monetary Fund.

Pine-McLarty last year capped her sterling contribution in public service when she, along with the hard-working team at the Electoral Commission of Jamaica, which she chaired, successfully staged two national elections - general and local - resulting in a smooth transition of power, which had the international community standing up and taking notice.

More than 50 years ago, she was the only woman employed at the prestigious law firm Myers, Fletcher, and Gordon, where she built a successful career as an attorney-at-law and moved up the ranks to partner.

Founder and chairman of Barita Investments Limited, the oldest stockbroking company in Jamaica, Humphries-Lewin has distinguished herself at the forefront of Jamaica's stockbroking industry for more than 45 years. One of the first women in the Western Hemisphere to become a stockbroker, she became the first female chairman of a stock exchange in the Caribbean, leading the Jamaica Stock Exchange in that capacity in 1984 and from 1995-2000.

A philanthropist in many areas of the society, Humphries-Lewin has a passion for early childhood development as she believes that there is a direct correlation between positive early childhood programmes and the social and economic development of a country.