‘Multi disciplinarian’ Edison Jefford to lead GCCI as Executive Director for next four years

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Entrepreneur, sport enthusiast and long-time journalist Edison Jefford is the new Executive Director of the Georgetown Chamber of Commerce and Industry (GCCI), the largest private sector organisation in Guyana.

He replaces economist Richard Rambarran and for the next four years will manage the work programme and overall operations of the Chamber’s secretariat.

“I was basically appointed. I applied for the position and I was successful after a process of two intense interviews… I secured a contract for four years, until 2027,” Jefford told the News Room during an interview on Monday.

He started his career in journalism and now describes himself as a “multi-disciplinarian” with special skills in various sectors including public relations and marketing.

Jefford is the owner of four small businesses providing services in sport, distribution and sales and food and beverage.

“I acquired various skills from being employed in various sectors over a long career from media, Kaieteur News, to Ansa Mcal, to the Ministry of Telecommunications and now at the Georgetown Chamber of Commerce and Industry… I am well positioned to lead this Chamber into the future,” he explained.

Jefford takes up the position while the Chamber continues its work under new leadership with the recent election of a new executive body headed by President Kester Hutson.

And so, the strategic direction of the Chamber has come into sharp focus.

“In my first month, I submitted a strategic plan that includes the vision of the new president Mr Hutson as well as the vision of the executive management committee.”

Jefford explained that membership retention and acquisition remain top priority.

“It was the thrust of the last Executive Director, Mr. Rambarran. Under his leadership the membership grew to about 800… a lot of our members are micro, small and medium and my vision is to transition our membership to big businesses,” Jefford explained.

To accomplish this, he said, there will be targeted efforts to ensure more twinning of local businesses who are already members but also by encouraging joint ventures with external and foreign businesses.

Focus will also be placed on developing a strong e-commerce platform as the advocacy continues for more cashless transactions and more outbound trade missions where Guyanese businesses can take their offerings abroad.

“Training and investment are also a critical part of work programme… I would like to put more emphasis on building our legal department and committee.” Jefford added.

He said there are several aspects to the overall development of the GCCI and he is assured of the support of the executive management and the 12 committees that manage the work programme of the Chamber.

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