Jamaican-born, raised and educated, Ricardo Bryan is an international business executive with GraceKennedy Ltd., the Caribbean’s leading distributor of food and non-food consumer products. He is senior vice president, GraceKennedy, Foods USA.
Bryan started with GraceKennedy in 1995 as product manager and was promoted in 1998 to market manager for the Northern Caribbean and Latin America — 22 countries — where he tripled sales within two years.
He became international marketing manager for the Northern USA Region in 2000 and business in the region grew significantly.
“I’m particularly proud in helping build the Company’s distribution beyond the cultural borders of the Caribbean to embrace the Latino Hispanic and mainstream USA markets,” says this bi-lingual executive who speaks a fluent Spanish in addition to English. “The network has expanded from a small footprint in ethnic stores to a credible respected national brand.”
For seven years, as regional business manager for GraceKennedy USA, he developed a track record of consistently opening and developing international markets.
In 2012, he received The UWI Vice Chancellor’s Award for “Outstanding Community Leader and Rising Star,” an award for Caribbean heritage persons recognized as being on the cutting edge of their profession. Bryan received this award for being on “the forefront of his company’s success in growing the USA.”
Ricardo relocated to Canada in 2013 and as vice president sales and marketing for GraceKennedy, Ontario Inc, he led the restructuring of the sales organization during his two-year tenure.
“My mother, a single mom after my father died, was my greatest inspiration,” he says. “She demonstrated the importance of hard work and being authentic.”
An active member in the Church of God of Prophecy, Bryan is heavily involved in their community outreach programs. He is the church’s music director and a leader of the Men’s Ministries for the Brooklyn District,N.Y.
Also, as a mentor for teenagers and young adults, he remembers the men — his pastor and the principal of his high school — who took an interest in him growing up.
“Children in the Diaspora need positive role models from people of Caribbean descent to help confirm their identity,” he says. “Seeing people in leadership roles from their background can inspire them.”
Consistent with his passion for making an impact through media, Bryan is the creator, producer and host of the weekly four-hour radio show — Caribbean Gospel Flavas (Flavors) aired on 1190 WLIB throughout the tri-state area. “I am the only Caribbean host on WLIB,” he says.