The GraceKennedy Foundation (GKF) is pleased to announce the appointment of Professor Lila Rao-Graham of the Mona School of Business and Management, as the new holder of the GraceKennedy S. Carlton Alexander Chair in Management Studies at the University of the West Indies (UWI), Mona.
Professor Rao-Graham is the third holder of the post, succeeding Professors Gordon Shirley (1992-2010) and Ian Boxill (2010-2018).
Commenting on the appointment, Dr Fred Kennedy, Chairman of GKF, said, “Professor Rao-Graham’s specialisation in the mix of data, digitisation and business intelligence creates promising synergies between the mission of the S. Carlton Alexander Chair, which focuses on building a corps of highly trained business professionals, and Jamaica’s economic development. The COVID-19 pandemic propelled us into the era of digitisation, demonstrating the urgency with which we need, as a nation, to catch up in the areas of education and business to maintain a path of sustainable development.”
The S. Carlton Alexander Chair in Management Studies was endowed by the GraceKennedy Foundation in 1989 in honour of the Hon S. Carlton Alexander, late Chairman and CEO of GraceKennedy and an outstanding businessman and patriot. The establishment of the Chair marked the beginning of a partnership between GK and UWI which has lasted for over three decades and has contributed to the growth of a strong business and financial sector through developing Jamaican talent.
Professor Rao-Graham brings extensive knowledge and experience to her new post, in the areas of Strategic Business Intelligence, Data for Development, and Data and Knowledge Management. Her sterling qualifications include a Bachelor of Science in Computer Science (first class) from the University of the West Indies, Mona; a Master of Mathematics in Computer Science from the University of Waterloo, Canada; and a Ph.D. in Information Systems from UWI.
CEO of GKF Caroline Mahfood, noted, “Professor Rao-Graham’s appointment is timely as her expertise will be crucial to the GK’s digital transformation focus, and we are grateful to have her guidance.”
Professor Rao-Graham has made significant contributions to a developing body of work on Data and Knowledge Management and Strategic Business Intelligence in the Caribbean region, through numerous publications including: A Knowledge Broker for Collaboration and Sharing for SIDS: The Case of Comprehensive Disaster Management in the Caribbean; An Agile Approach for Academic Analytics: A Case Study; Big Data Analytics and Customs Throughput: The Case of Jamaica; and Building Smart Communities for Sustainable Development: Community Tourism in Treasure Beach Jamaica. Her research has involved several engagements with the local business community, which became integral to her co-authored book Business Intelligence for Small and Medium-Sized Enterprises, published in 2019.