Republic Bank (Grenada) Limited plants Saman tree in honour of Ronald Harford, retired Chairman of RFHL

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January 09, 2020; St. George Grenada: Son of Grenadian soil, Ronald Frederick deCreeft Harford retired as Chairman of the Board of Directors of Republic Financial Holdings Limited on December 31, 2019, following an illustrious banking career. Republic Bank (Grenada) Limited marked his retirement with a ceremonial tree planting in his honour at the Quarantine Park, St. George.

Governor General, Her Excellency Dame Cecile La Grenade and Rondell Lewis, the 2019 Junior Boys RightSTART Cup MVP assisted Mr. Harford in the planting of a “Saman Tree”. Known for its wide and sprawling growth pattern, the Saman tree is symbolic of Mr. Harford’s overarching presence throughout the banking industry in the Caribbean.

For the past 57 years Ronald Harford, who hailed from Harford Village in St. Andrew, has been a stalwart in the banking industry, his name and image synonymous to the Republic Group. He started at an entry level when he joined Barclay’s Bank Dominion in 1963 as a Post Desk (Mailroom) clerk in neighbouring Trinidad and Tobago. He made his way up the banking ranks, holding various managerial positions in Information Technology, Human Resources, Branch Network, and Foreign Exchange Operations, eventually moving up through the organization to be its leader. At the helm, Mr. Harford guided the Republic Group to a position where it is now a global player in the financial industry.

Keith Johnson, Managing Director of Republic Bank (Grenada) Limited, in delivering Mr. Harford’s the citation at the Tree Planting ceremony, recognized Mr. Harford’s immeasurable contribution to the development of the Republic Group and the financial system in the region. Some of his most notable career achievements included the establishment of Republic Bank (Cayman) Limited in 1992 and the merger of Bank of Commerce Trinidad and Tobago Limited with Republic Bank Limited in 1997. In that same year he became the Chairman of Republic Bank (Grenada) Limited, and remained the Chairman of the Board for 20 years, until 2017. The National Commercial Bank of (Grenada) Limited (“NCB”) became the largest commercial bank in Grenada in 1992 and in that same year the Government sold 51% of its shareholding to Republic Bank Limited, Trinidad. In 2006 NCB was rebranded Republic Bank. Mr. Harford also spearheaded the acquisition of the Group’s operations in Guyana, Barbados, Suriname, Ghana, as well as the purchase of the Scotiabank operations in seven territories in the Eastern Caribbean, this past year.

Turning the sod was Governor General, Her Excellency Dame Cecile La Grenade, holder of the highest position in our nation, symbolizing the level of Mr. Harford’s contribution to Grenada, along with Rondell Lewis, the 2019 RightStart Junior Boys MVP. Rondell represents the youth who will recognize the growth of this tree in years to come, remembering the occasion when it was planted and the significance it represents.

We wish Mr. Harford many happy years of retirement!

January 13, 2020
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