WILLIAMS… died within the United States on Saturday, aged 89.
THE tribute from Sagicor Group Jamaica finest described R Danny Williams: “Insurance pioneer, philanthropist, and nation-builder extraordinaire.”
R Danvers “Danny” Williams, the person who based Life of Jamaica (LOJ) — now Sagicor Life Jamaica — in 1970, died on Saturday at a hospital in Miami, Florida, USA, the place he had undergone surgical procedure. He was 89.
His passing was met with sorrow amongst Jamaica’s political and enterprise communities who recalled his selfless contribution to the nation spanning six many years.
“He ranks within the highest echelons of committed leaders who have contributed beyond measure to the growth and esteem of our island. He was a towering giant in the fields of business, education, institution building and deserving charitable causes,” former Prime Minister PJ Patterson mentioned, including that Jamaica was poorer for Williams’ passing.
R Danny Williams and his spouse, Shirley, exhibit his biography at its launch in 2019..
“I have lost a precious friend and an invaluable political colleague,” added Patterson who, within the Seventies, served alongside Williams within the Cabinet of then Prime Minister Michael Manley (now deceased).
“No words are sufficient to thank Shirley, his lifelong partner, for sharing him so generously with the entire country and taking such good care of him. To her and the family — by blood and extended — we express our profound sympathy. All Jamaica is bereaved,” mentioned Patterson.
Prime Minister Andrew Holness, in a put up on Twitter, expressed disappointment on the passing of a person who “made remarkable contributions across various fields”.
“May his life and legacy continue to inspire us as we recall with gratitude his service to public life and within the private sector, which has positively impacted the Jamaican landscape,” Holness mentioned.
Retired Opposition chief and People’s National Party (PNP) President Dr Peter Phillips mentioned he was saddened by Williams’ passing.
He mentioned Williams was “a truly great Jamaican and a pioneering spirit who contributed tremendously to the development of his country and its institutions”.
Noting the interval within the Seventies when Williams served as minister of business and commerce, Phillips mentioned, “He was courageous enough to serve in the Administration despite the turbulence at the time.”
He additionally recalled Williams’ “stellar contribution” at his alma mater Jamaica College, saying that it “must also be lauded as he steered the committee that undertook the rehabilitation of the college campus along with other old boys”.
Current Opposition chief and PNP President Mark Golding described Williams as a real Jamaican patriot who served, each within the personal sector and the general public sector, with nice distinction.
“He was a pioneer in developing an indigenous life insurance industry, and built a reputation for even-handedness, great integrity, and commercial acumen,” Golding mentioned.
“Danny’s legendary prowess in raising funds for worthy causes is unmatched in modern Jamaica, and several important institutions have benefited from those efforts,” added Golding.
Sagicor President and CEO Christopher Zacca mentioned Williams “was deeply loved, respected and admired by colleagues, employees, and industry peers alike for his integrity and compassion”.
He described Williams’ contribution to Jamaica as “immense” and mentioned he leaves behind a “tremendous legacy”.
Zacca mentioned Williams steered the corporate via important milestones and challenges, leaving an indelible mark on its 53-year historical past.
“His visionary leadership, unwavering dedication, and commitment to excellence were unparalleled and sowed the seeds for Sagicor Group Jamaica’s (SGJ) growth into a regional powerhouse. In 2017, in recognition of his service to SGJ, he was named as director emeritus,” Zacca shared.
“The profound impact of our beloved Danny will continue to shape the future and direction of Sagicor. His departure has left a void in our hearts at Sagicor and indeed the entire Jamaican business community.”
Williams was solely 18 years outdated when he joined North American Life Assurance Company as a salesman, in 1953. Within seven years he was appointed department supervisor for Jamaica, and over the subsequent decade he guided the department to the primary place within the firm’s worldwide community.
Eventually he based LOJ and constructed it into one of many largest insurance coverage companies within the Caribbean.
Williams served as president and CEO of the corporate on two separate events, however within the midst of the Nineteen Nineties monetary meltdown he ceded management of the corporate to the State-run Financial Sector Adjustment Company (Finsac).
Barbados Mutual Life Assurance Society and Life of Barbados acquired majority curiosity in LOJ some years later. Barbados Mutual in flip acquired LOJ, which was rebranded as Sagicor.
Williams remained a shareholder with 12.33 million shares via his firm Ravers Limited on the time.
When the rebranding programme was being rolled out in Jamaica, Williams was probably the most identified face on the press convention desk, endorsing the brand new identify and assuring the Jamaican clientèle it was enterprise as traditional, however even higher than earlier than.
For his providers to Jamaica, Williams was invested with the nationwide honours of Commander of the Order of Distinction in 1972 and the Order o