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Matalon humbled by AMCHAM recognition

Published:Thursday | October 22, 2015 | 12:00 AMDaviot Kelly

An astute businessman, it was for his work both in, and outside, the board room that Joseph M Matalon picked up his latest accolade.

Matalon and Missionaries of the Poor founder Father Richard Ho Lung were presented with individual awards at the recent American Chamber of Commerce Business and Civic Leadership Awards. Matalon, chairman of the ICD Group, received an award for Civic Leadership, individual category, for his outstanding contributions to Jamaica.

"It is always very gratifying when one’s work is recognised," he said. "I was both honoured and flattered at my nomination for this award." He admitted he was surprised to learn that he had been nominated "and of course had no idea that I would actually be finally selected on the day". Matalon was selected from an outstanding group of nominees which included long-time board member of the Jamaica Association for the Deaf Dr Valerie Facey, internationally recognised cardiologist Professor Ernest Madu and businessman Norman Horne.

Matalon serves as honorary chairman of the St Patrick’s Foundation which supports charitable activities in inner-city communities. He served as president of the Private Sector Organisation of Jamaica (PSOJ) during the period 2009 to 2012 and has served on a number of special national committees established to advise the Government on finance and economic matters. In 2010, Matalon was appointed by the Government of Jamaica to the Order of Distinction in the rank of Commander in recognition of his contribution to the Public and Private sectors and to community service.

"In the context of this award and its criteria I am motivated by my passion for Jamaica and for young people in general," said Matalon. "I want to see Jamaica realise its future potential, and our young people will be critical determinants of that future. I also get a great deal of enjoyment and personal satisfaction out of my work in the public sphere, so I would say that is also a great motivator."

The AMCHAM awards recognise businesses, individuals and non-profit organisations that have been positively affecting economic and social progress in Jamaica through good leadership, and community building activities. Other winners at the event were National Commercial Bank and the Heart Institute of Jamaica, both for Corporate Social Responsibility, and the Jamaica Cancer Society for Civic Leadership. Olympian Shelly-Ann Fraser Pryce was given a special award for contribution to Brand Jamaica.