Washington, DC — Corporate Council on Africa (CCA) President and CEO, Stephen Hayes will be honored by the Africa-America Institute with the AAI 2016 U.S. Business Leader Award at the AAI 2016 Annual Awards Gala.
Mr. Hayes was selected in recognition for his dedicated leadership and strategic contributions to the growth and strengthening of U.S.-Africa Business Relations. Under his direction, CCA's work and initiatives have had a domino effect, transforming nascent policy and private sector engagement into greater and broader U.S. engagement with Africa. The award appropriately comes on the eve of President Barack Obama's Second U.S.-Africa Business Forum.
"There is no greater honor than those from peers, especially when those peers are so highly regarded as is the Africa-America Institute, an organization that has been a leader in building US-Africa relations through education," said Hayes. "I am deeply appreciative, genuinely surprised and humbled that they would bestow this honor on me. Of course it is really an honor for the Corporate Council on Africa as our contributions over the years have always been through a team effort of staff and board."
In his 17-year tenure as president, Stephen Hayes has led CCA to become fully engaged in a wide range of economic and political issues affecting commerce between the U.S. and Africa. Mr. Hayes' personal dedication to African growth, development and prosperity through business and investment is evident in his work, which has garnered several awards. To date, Mr. Hayes and CCA are the only individual and entity in the United States to have been awarded the two highest awards given by the U.S. Government for international economic leadership. In 2008, Mr. Hayes was awarded the Ron Brown Award for International Leadership, the highest individual award possible from the United States Department of Commerce; and in 2015, under Hayes' leadership, the Corporate Council on Africa was presented with the President's "E" Award for Excellence in Export Service.
The Award, presented by the United States Department of Commerce, was initiated by President John F. Kennedy in 1963. In addition to these awards, Mr. Hayes has also been honored by the Africa Chamber of Commerce of the U.S.; the Transnet Foundation, South Africa's largest foundation chaired by Bishop Tutu; and the United Nations Development Programme. He has also been honored for his leadership by Senegal and Kenya.
The AAI 2016 Annual Awards Gala will take place on Tuesday, September 20, 2016 in New York City during the opening week of the 71st United Nations General Assembly and the Second U.S.-Africa Business Forum. The Africa-America Institute is the premier U.S.-based international organization that works to increase the capacity of African individuals and institutions through higher education initiatives, leadership development, professional workforce training, convening activities, program implementation and management.
Other accepted honorees include: AAI 2016 African Business Leader Award: Mr. Aliko Dangote, President and CEO, Dangote Group; and AAI 2016 Distinguished Alumnus Award: Mr. Sunil Benimadhu, Chief Executive, Stock Exchange of Mauritius.