On November 28, Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton presented the Secretary of State’s 2012 Award for Corporate Excellence (ACE) to Sorwathé Ltd. of Rwanda, a company founded by Joseph Wertheim, President of Tea Importers, Inc., a firm located in Westport, CT. The ACE is an annual award recognizing U.S.-owned businesses that exhibit exemplary corporate citizenship, promote innovation, and advance democratic principles around the world.
Founded in 1958, Tea Importers is a major tea trading company serving customers around the globe. It is the majority shareholder of Sorwathé. Sorwathé, located in Kinihira, Rwanda, is this year’s small-medium-size company winner of the ACE. This tea production and processing company was honored for its efforts to support adult literacy, worker association and collective bargaining rights, sustainable agriculture, forestry and water management, and to produce socially and environmentally responsible high quality teas. Sorwathé also distinguished itself by leading the charge for the eradication of child labor in Rwanda’s tea sector.