Surprised and privileged was Coleraine business man Norman Lynas’ reaction to the news he has been awarded an OBE for services to business, the community and charity.
Norman Lynas has been involved in business, community and charitable life for many years. From small beginnings in the nineteen sixties in the fish business, he has grown Lynas Foodservice to become the largest independent frozen, chilled and ambient foodservice company in Ireland, now employing some 450 staff.
He is now the Chairman of the company, but is still involved encouraging the next generation to keep building on the innovative business model which he created to service the catering industry across Ireland.
Norman established the Lynas Charitable Trust Fund in 1978 from income from the business and has supported a wide variety of causes over the years, especially involving Christian work. He and his wife set up Exodus in 1997, which is a charity helping young people to boldly follow Jesus and become lifelong disciple makers. Over 7500 young people have been through the programmes, travelling to some 35 countries since the start. Norman and Lynda regularly travel to visit teams in Romania and a variety of other locations.
He has also played a role in the work of the Coleraine Enterprise Agency where he launched Venture Causeway, a dragons den style initiative to stimulate enterprise and fund job creation and to date 29 businesses have been given both financial and mentoring support, and he continues to encourage job creation and entrepreneurship in the Causeway council area.
Norman commented, “I am very surprised but feel greatly privileged to receive this honour which I feel I don’t deserve. It would not have been possible without the support of my wife and family, the wonderful staff at Lynas Foodservice, the committed young leaders in Exodus and the visionary team at Causeway Enterprise Agency. In acknowledging that God has blessed us, we in turn have been given the privilege and opportunity to encourage and bless others”.