The Cape Chamber could not be in better hands as I hand the reigns over to Mr Geoffrey Jacobs.
I’ve served as president for five eventful years which saw a rise in the Chamber’s profile. This was confirmed by independent research which found that the Chamber brand equity had significantly increased during this time.
The new president is well equipped for the job. Geoff is probably the best qualified president we have had in recent years. He was brought up on the Cape Flats, educated in Athlone and went on to earn Masters degrees in business administration and history. Most of his experience in the business world has been in the human resources field.
I am particularly pleased that he is a former school principal with a deep and practical understanding of education. I believe this will be of great importance as we go forward for there is nothing like knowledge to break down social and professional barriers.
South Africa has too many underachieving schools and that leads to underachieving lives. We see the results in business, and it is my wish that business and the Chamber will take a greater interest in education, especially basic education and I’m sure Geoff will give the lead.
In addition to his qualifications from South African universities, he also has a Masters degree from the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee in the Unites States where he received the award for the best history Masters thesis. He has 22 years solid business experience mainly in the human resources arena.
The new Deputy President is Mr Jacques-Louis Moolman, a Swiss trained hotelier who has managed many of the Cape’s leading hotels for the Tsogo Sun company.
This brings a good balance to the leadership of the Chamber. Tourism is now a big and growing part of the Western Cape economy so the Chamber can certainly benefit from his expertise.
We find ourselves in an economy where corruption is rife – it is essential that the Chamber remain the voice of business as well as serving as the moral compass we so dearly need. I have every belief that Geoff and Jacques will help guide us along this path.
I will remain on the Board as the Immediate Past President.
Immediate Past President of the Cape Chamber