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MAS Holdings Chairman Mahesh Amalean bags leadership award
Mar '13
Deshamanya Mahesh Amalean has been recognized for exceptional leadership in championing women’s empowerment and support for the Women’s Empowerment Principles – a partnership initiative of UN Women and The UN Global Compact. The Award highlights “concrete and innovative actions taken to advance women in the workplace, marketplace and community”. 

He is one of 5 global business leaders recognized at this inaugural Leadership Awards presentation. He received the award for Cultural Change for Empowerment; for the pioneering MAS Women Go Beyond programme. Initiated by MAS Holdings in 2003, the programme challenged the accepted norms of employment for women in the Sri Lankan apparel industry, extending its impact to the South Asian Region. 

The Leadership Awards were presented at the 5th Annual Women’s Empowerment Principles (WEP’s) Event, held on 6th March, in New York, in observance of International Women’s Day.  The occasion was graced by United Nations Secretary General Ban Ki-moon, who gave the closing address.

Mahesh Amalean commented on the accolade, stating “This award is a global endorsement that we are doing the right thing in a crucial area of ethical business, and encourages us to further refine and strengthen the Women Go Beyond Programme. This award will encourage me to continue giving leadership to empowering women in our organization and the communities in which we live.”

He signed the Women’s Empowerment Principles in November 2011, currently one of only three companies in Sri Lanka to have taken this progressive step to integrate the principles into their operations.  Nearly 550 chief executives worldwide have publicly declared their commitment to implement the Women’s Empowerment Principles.

The Leadership Awards recognize business leaders for promoting women’s empowerment across their organizations and supporting seven acknowledged Women’s empowerment principles. Mahesh Amalean was recognized for the innovative approach MAS took through the Women Go Beyond programme (WGB) to achieve women’s empowerment in the workplace and community, generating a paradigm shift in the apparel industry. 

Of the total workforce, 88% of MAS’ teams comprise of female employees. These women of MAS improve their skills and knowledge through training, coaching and education; as the company works pro-actively to promote work-life balance, address gender-based violence and reward their accomplishments. 

Associates are made aware of their contribution to the nation’s GDP, recognized for their untiring efforts and accomplishments, their success is celebrated, and they are encouraged to be proud of their job roles and secure in their roles in society.  Through the years, these empowered and confident women have made a significant contribution to the growth of both the organization and of the community.

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