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Foremost Statement on Passing of Chair & CEO Angela Chao

On February 12, 2024, the Foremost Group releases the following statement regarding the passing of Angela Chao:

“It is with deep sadness that Foremost Group announces the passing of Angela Chao in a tragic car accident. Angela Chao was a formidable executive and shipping industry leader, as well as a proud and loving daughter, sister, aunt, wife and mother. She was also a precocious youngster, learning about the shipping industry at an early age as she lovingly followed her father around during “Take Your Daughter to Work” days on his ships. After earning a bachelor’s degree in economics magna cum laude from Harvard College in just three years, she attended Harvard Business School where she wrote a case study on “Ocean Carriers” that to this day is part of the required curriculum for first year HBS students.  So, it was no surprise that as our Chair and CEO, she charted new paths that led the company to record achievements in the shipping industry.  


Source: To be added 

Building on the legacy of honor, integrity and performance established by her father and our company's founder, Dr. James S. C. Chao, she made exceptional customer service, efficiency, and superior performance the hallmarks of her leadership.  She was also a passionate advocate for incorporating environmentally sustainable practices throughout the company’s operations. That’s why the Foremost Group’s fleet includes some of the largest, most modern, and eco-friendly ships in the world. But most importantly, Angela believed that the foundational element of success is the belief that shipping is not an asset finance business, but that it’s about people. She placed special emphasis on paying attention to the care and well-being of our crews, and to everyone onboard and onshore who played a role in performing our services. As a result, her leadership in the shipping industry was widely recognized. Among other honors, she served as a Board Member of the American Bureau of Shipping Council, as well as a Board Member of the Massachusetts Maritime Academy’s International Maritime Business Department Advisory Board. She will be greatly missed and leaves a legacy of pioneering leadership- especially for women- in shipping, philanthropy and the arts.”

Source: To be added 

Dr. James S.C. Chao will return as Chair of Foremost Group, and Michael Lee will assume the role of President.

About Foremost Group


Foremost Group is an American shipping company headquartered in New York that charters out some of the world’s largest and most eco-friendly ships to blue-chip clients who use the vessels to transport dry bulk products to markets around the world. As a global leader in dry bulk shipping, Foremost Group has earned a worldwide reputation for its commitment to exceptional service and performance while always holding itself to the highest ethical standards.


Foremost Group is an industry leader in incorporating fuel-efficient designs and technologies in its fleet of modern and eco-friendly dry bulk carriers. The company can ship more than 20 million tons of goods around the world each year for its blue-chip clients. This includes a wide variety of dry bulk products, such as grains, soybeans, iron ore, and other essential goods. Foremost ensures the highest-quality service by exclusively managing ships that have been built to its high standards and specifications.  Read more here:


Photo of the Chao family taken at a press conference announcing a $40 million gift to Harvard University and Harvard Business School. From left to right in the back row is Angela Chao, Christine Chao, May Chao and Grace Chao. (Suzanne Kreiter/The Boston Globe via Getty Images / Getty Images)

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