As part Eight of my Black History Month series, I would like to introduce you to Michael Lee-Chin.
Lee-Chin, born in 1951, came from a modest family life. His mother sold Avon products, and worked as a bookkeeper for various local firms; his stepfather ran a local grocery store
His first job came in 1965 working as part of the landscaping team at the Frenchman’s Cove Hotel. In 1966 he got a summer job working on the Jamaica Queen cruise ship, cleaning the engine room.
Lee-Chin first came to Canada in 1970 to attend McMaster University on a scholarship program sponsored by the Jamaican government to study Civil Engineering. In 1977, he was selling mutual funds. By 1987, he bought Advantage Investment Counsel, now AIC Limited, one of the country’s biggest mutual-fund companies with assets of more than 12 billion dollars!
Michael Lee-Chin is also known as a philanthropist. In 2003, he made headlines when he donated $30 million to the Royal Ontario Museum.
There is an interview with Michael Lee-Chin on CBC’s Lang and O’Leary Exchange,