The Joint Apparel Association Forum (JAAF), the apex body of the Sri Lankan apparel industry, announced the appointment of respected industry veteran, Yohan Lawrence, as its new Secretary General.
Lawrence, who counts over 20 years of experience in senior management positions in the apparel sector as well as in leadership positions in prominent industry associations, succeeds Tuli Cooray, the association’s founder Secretary General, who stepped down after a long and distinguished tenure in the role. Tuli Cooray continues his relationship with the JAAF in the capacity of a Consultant.
A former Chairman of Sri Lanka Apparel Exporters’ Association (SLAEA) – one of the constituent organisations of JAAF–Lawrence has also previously functioned as the Vice Chairman of JAAF. He holds a BSc in Economics from the University College of London and a MBA from the Middlesex University – UKand has held several key positionsincluding regional roles in multinational apparel operations.
Lawrence is also the former Chief Operating Officer (COO) – Business Sustainability of InQube Global, Country Manager of Quantum Clothing Lanka and the Assistant General Manager of Coats Viyella Clothing in Sri Lanka.
“Having onboard a proven, dynamicand respected professional of the calibre of YohanLawrence as our new Secretary General, will be a significant source of strength for JAAF,” newly elected Chairman, SharadAmalean said. “The JAAF Executive Committee will benefit from his deep industry expertise, as we strive forward in our journey to establish Sri Lanka as a global apparel hub.We also extend our immense gratitude to our outgoing Secretary General – Tuli Cooray, for his tireless contribution over many years, on behalf of the country’s apparel sector and JAAF.”
Prior to his present appointment, Lawrence has worked in close collaboration with his predecessor, to support JAAF and the industry, following the outbreak of the pandemic, which created many challenges for the apparel sector.
Lawrence has also supported the industryas its representative to several key committees and organisations. He is the industry nominee to the National Labour Advisory Council and serves as one of the Industry Directors at the Sri Lanka Institute of Textile and Apparel. He has also been the industry representative on the Council of the Employers’ Federation of Ceylon and a member of the Apparel Advisory Committee of the Export Development Board (EDB).