Panama Canal executive to receive honorary doctorate at Southeastern commencement ceremony December 13
Monday, December 1, 2014
by: Rene Abadie
HAMMOND - Southeastern Louisiana University will honor one of Central America's most influential business leaders with an honorary doctorate at its commencement ceremony on Saturday, Dec. 13.
Jose Barrios Ng, who has led current efforts to modernize the Panama Canal, will receive the honorary Doctor of Humanities Degree at the event scheduled for 10 a.m. at the University Center. The honorary degree for Barrios was approved earlier this year by Southeastern's governing body, the University of Louisiana System Board of Supervisors.
The university will confer approximately 1,200 degrees on students who are graduating with bachelor's, master's and doctoral degrees.
A native of Panama City, Barrios is known for his vision in helping the canal to remain the world's leading gateway for commerce through the investment of billions of dollars in modernization efforts. He is currently president and chief executive officer of ABCO Global, a consulting firm for maritime and supply chain management, and the financial newspaper "Capital Finance."
Over his career, he has held several positions with the Panama Canal Authority, including vice president of planning, chief financial officer and deputy chief executive officer. He was appointed chief negotiator of the U.S.-Panama Free Trade Agreement by the Canal Authority. He has also served as president of the Panama Stock Exchange, the Rotary Club of Panama and the Panama Chinese Association.
"For more than seven years now, Mr. Barrios has supported efforts to improve the internationalization of Southeastern and the State of Louisiana," said President John L. Crain.
"He facilitated the Canal's support of the state's efforts to develop the International Transfer Terminal that will enhance trade with Louisiana."
Crain added that Barrios has been a strong supporter of Southeastern's study abroad programs, and has addressed students on international business while mentoring faculty on global and maritime issues. Most recently he has worked with Southeastern and its Hispanic Business Institute to implement the Executive Commercial Mission to Panama in order to expand business relations between Louisiana and Panama.
Barrios is a 1970 graduate of LSU with a bachelor's degree in electrical engineering. He holds a master's in electrical engineering from Georgia Institute of Technology and a master's in economic engineering from the University of California – Los Angeles. He has also completed studies in corporate finance at Massachusetts Institute of Technology and operations research at UCLA.