The Order of Industrial Service, Gold Tower, the top honor given to an individual by the government, went to LG Electronics Vice Chairman Cho Seong-jin.
LG Electronics Vice Chairman Cho was one of 17 individuals, 32 organizations and two teams who were presented with orders and other government prizes in recognition of their contribution to spearheading companywide productivity innovation at the 41st National Productivity Awards ceremony at COEX in Seoul on Oct. 18.
Among dignitaries on the event were Prime Minister Lee Nak-yeon, Deputy Minister Park Kun-soo of the Ministry of Trade, Industry and Energy (MOTIE), and Chairman Hong Soon-jick of the Korea Productivity Center (KPC).
LG Electronics Vice Chairman Cho has been with the Korean home appliance industry for about 40 years since he entered the electric machinery office of Goldstar, the predecessor of LG Electronics, in 1976.
“It’s an honor for me to win the Order of Industrial Service. I’ll make efforts to contribute to the continued growth and development of the Korean electronics industry down the road,” he said.
Vice Chairman Cho, a graduate of Yongsan High School in Seoul, catapulted to fame by holding such positions as senior executive vice president of the home appliance business and president of the business and CEO and vice chairman.
Cho is known as “the master of LG Electronics’ washing machines” as he was working nights in the office to develop a direct drive motor, ending its technology dependence on Japanese imports.
The award recognizes LG Electronics’ contribution in raising the Korean home appliance industry’s competitiveness by developing new technologies and exploring global markets, LG Electronics officials said.
President Ryu Si-hyuck of Woojin Industry Co. was awarded with the Order of Industrial Service, Silver Tower. The prize winners also included Yuhan Corp., Douzone, Korea East-West Power and Severance Hospital.
In his commemorative speech, Prime Minister Lee praised the winners and all industry communities for their contributions to the development of the Korean economy. Prime Minister Lee, stressing global trends of innovative productivity, suggested reciprocity among state, SMEs, startups and large-sized companies. He emphasized science and technology innovation, including the 4th Industrial Revolution; smart production of all industries, institutional reform, including regulatory relief and the introduction of a negative regulation system; and educational, public entity and social innovation with the goal of making the nation an advanced innovation country creating new industries and jobs.
Lee said the government will expand R&D outlays for small venture companies, reinvigorate promising new growth service markets, and innovate service regimes. He also urged large-sized companies to promote shared growth through their aggressive R&D investments for the development of new industries. In his speech, MOTIE Deputy Minister Park said SME, mid-size superstar and large-sized company representatives adopted a joint declaration of improving productivity to brace for the advent of the 4th Industrial Revolution.
He stressed a pledge to do all-out efforts to strengthen national competitiveness through the improving of productivity, creating endless values and jobs.