His Excellency Octavio Errazuriz, Chile's Ambassador to the Mission to the United Nations, will join the Chamber in offering commendations to the honorees, as will Pennsylvania State Senator Mike Stack and the CEO of the Greater Philadelphia Chamber of Commerce Robert Wonderling, who are noted for their long-time support of the trade partnership and enduring friendship between the Republic of Chile and the Greater Philadelphia region.
Delaware Governor Jack Markell will receive the 2013 Friend of Chile award in recognition of his regional leadership, his support of the Delaware River main channel deepening project, critical to the continued economic growth and job creation and retention within the Delaware River maritime industry, for his steadfast commitment to fostering trade with and cultural and economic ties to Chile and for his invaluable support of the local Chilean consulate and the Chilean and American Chamber. The Friend of Chile Award is a tribute to the Commonwealth’s diplomacy and this special relationship. Chile has never had a more appreciative set of friends, than the ones they have in the Greater Philadelphia region.
A strong advocate and supporter of the Port of Wilmington Governor Markell professes a longstanding fondness of Chile initially developed early in his professional career when posted to Santiago on a banking assignment. This special relationship was recently rekindled during his August, 2011 trade mission to Santiago and Valparaiso. During these 5 days his busy agenda included several trade related meetings with the Minister of Agriculture, the Minister of Foreign Affairs, Executive Director of ProChile and the President of the Chilean Senate. Also, the Governor was received personally by Sebastian Pinera, President of the Republic of Chile at La Moneda, the presidential palace in Santiago. Governor Markell took this opportunity to stress to the President the value and importance of maintaining the consular office in Philadelphia, which at that time was to be closed, and to highlight the outstanding performance of its honorary consul in representing Chile. This meeting ended with President Pinera challenging the Governor to a future ping-pong match either in Santiago or in Wilmington. The Governor toured the Port of Valparaiso, a primary loading port for Chilean fruit destined for Wilmington and visited with investment bankers and their board membership. The Governor conducted most of these meetings in Spanish, which was especially well received by his hosts.
Thomas Matromarco of Holt Logistics and Harold Sbrocco of Sbrocco International will be recognized for their “Lifetime Achievement” for their visionary leadership and extraordinary contributions that they have made to the Chilean and American fruit trade along with the pivotal position they created for the Ports of the Delaware River.