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6th Annual General Meeting of the Women in Logistics and Transport (WiLAT)

The 6th Annual General Meeting of the Women in Logistics and Transport (WiLAT) was held on Thursday, May 09, 2019 at the Auditorium of the National Chamber of Commerce amidst a large gathering of the industries eminent personalities and members of the association.


Gayathri Karunanayake (CMILT) was appointed as the new chairperson for the year 2019/20. Gaaythri takes the helm from the outgoing Chairperson of WiLAT Dhashma Karunaratne and will be responsible to execute WiLAT’s advocacy initiatives whilst working closely with its parent body, the Chartered Institute of Logistics and Transport (CILT) & Global WiLAT Forum.  


Gayathri has over 14 years work experience in field of Supply chain and was the former Logistics Manager of Unilever Sri Lanka LTD responsible for the End to End Logistics function managing five distribution centers with dedicated 3PL logistics teams spread around the region. She is also a process champion in SAP and ERP implementation and is an expert in process development for Logistics Operations. She is currently heading the 3PL business unit at Spectra Logistics (Pvt) LTD.


Gayathri holds a Bachelor of Science degree from the University of Bangalore and a MBA from the University of Colombo. She also holds an Advance Diploma in Logistic Management from National Institute of Business Management.


Gayathri joined WiLAT in 2013 and was a part of the founding executive committee serving in the capacity of treasurer. She was then appointed as the Vice chairperson of WiLAT Sri Lanka responsible for Branding and Sponsorship in the year 2018.


Anoma Ranasinghe, Niroza Gazzali and Maithree Attanayake were elected as the Vice chairpersons whilst Amra Zareer was re-elected as the Secretary and Manajri Nigamuni was elected as Treasure for WiLAT for the year 2019/20.


The outgoing Chairperson, Dhashma Karunaratne will serve as the immediate past chairperson and Gayani De Alwis will continue in the capacity of Advisor for WiLAT Sri Lanka.


Dhashma Karunaratne, outgoing Chairperson, in her speech thanked the past committee for supporting her during her two year tenure and wished the newly elected Chairperson and her committee and mentioned that she hopes, WiLAT Sri Lanka will continue the efforts under the 4 strategic thrust namely mentorship, leadership, entrepreneurship and empowerment. She added that at a time when WiLAT Sri Lanka is in a very strong position, she is confident that the new committee under the able leadership of her successor would be able to translate vision and strategy in to world class execution and bring together all females in the Logistics & Transport Industry to create value to the economy.

The new Chairperson Gayathri Karunanayake concluded by pledging to make WiLAT Sri Lanka the shiniest diamond in the WiLAT global crown and mentioned she would work towards investing in young women professionals to encourage them in leadership and empowerment and help to set good foundation for future progress of women in the logistics, transport and supply chain industry.

The vote of thanks was proposed by Amra Zareer and in which she also invited the Gayani De Alwis, the cofounder / advisor for WLlAT Sri Lanka to felicitate the outgoing Chairperson Dhashma Karunaratne in recognition of her dedication, support, commitment, leadership and contribution made towards WiLAT SL.


WiLAT is the women’s forum of Chartered Institute of Logistics and Transport (CILT) and is part of an ever expanding global network. WiLAT is considered as a live wire of the institute. The main objective of WiLAT is to promote and encourage the art and science of logistics and transport among women. Currently WiLAT is present in 18 countries with over 1800 members in the global network which is expanding rapidly.  WiLAT Sri Lanka is one of the five pioneering fora of the global network and was established on 21st March 2013. WiLAT membership is open to all women working in public and private sector and in academia in the areas of logistics, transport, supply chain and supporting functions in organizations. WiLAT Sri Lanka forum is expected to provide a platform for women engaged in the industry to maximize their true potential both professionally and personally WiLAT Sri Lanka since its formation in 2013, has played an active role in promoting gender diversity in the logistics and transport sector through value enhancing activities.

For more details on WiLAT, visit their web page –


Executive Committee of Women in Logistics and Transport – 2019/20

Welcome address by the outgoing  Chairperson – Dhashma Karunaratne

Incoming Chairperson Gayathri Karunanayake addressing the gathering

Secretary re-elect Amra Zareer, proposing the Vote of thanks

Felicitating the outgoing Chairperson Dhashma Karunaratne

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The Chartered Institute of Logistics and Transport (CILT) Sri Lanka held its 35thAnnual General Meeting (AGM) on 29th March 2019 at the Victorian of Kingsbury Hotel attended by an impressive gathering of their members. Gayani de Alwis CMILT was re-elected uncontested for a second term as the Chairperson of CILT. The three Vice Chairpersons who were reelected were Dr Namalie Sirisoma CMILT, Channaka de Alwis CMILT and Gihan Jayasinghe CMILT.  Mr Chaminda Perera CMILT was elected as the Hon. General Secretary and Upali Gunawardena FCILT was re-elected as the Hon. Treasurer.


Mrs. de Alwis is an experienced supply chain professional with over two decades of experience in the profession locally and overseas. She was the former Director of Customer Service of Unilever Sri Lanka LTD.  She was the founding Chairperson of Women in Logistics and Transport (WiLAT) and also is the Global Vice Chairperson of WiLAT South Asia. She had been an active Chartered member of CILT council since 2011.


The AGM also featured strong representation from the women’s forum of CILT, WiLAT and the Young Professionals Forum (YPF). Whilst addressing the gathering  Mrs De Alwis mentioned that CILT has approached the 35th year with an expansion and achieved positioning of CILT in many a mind by kicking off with a strategic planning workshop organized  on 28th April 2018 with the Council and priority areas were identified under CILT ‘s three strategic pillars, growth, capability and governance. Each pillar outcomes were assigned to the office bearers and progress was tracked at the monthly council meetings. This has paid rich dividends for CILT.

She further elaborated that the institute is as powerful as its membership, both Individual and Corporate Partners. In the past 12 months, institute used creative interventions to reach out to their members to enhance the numbers while adding value to them. Ten road shows were conducted with companies to drive membership. Besides same, shee added by saying that institute were able to reach a wider cross section of the industry on the benefits of being part of CILT. As a result, overall membership grew by 40% while the total membership crossed 2000 mark for the first time. Currently we have 2109 member. There is also significant growth in Chartered members and Fellows. Notably student members grew by 42% and they now account for 75% of our membership. It is very encouraging to note the engagement of Next Generation towards CILT, which augurs well for our future.  She mentioned that institute had initiated the induction of new and upgraded members at a ceremony in January 2019 and this will be continued as a regular feature. New members grew by 135% and upgrades by 70%. In order to recognize the achievements of our member’s we introduced a new feature in the LINK magazine therefore she urged all CILT members to send in your achievements to CILT Secretariat to feature these.  

She further emphasized that CILT also revamped the Corporate Partnership (CP) Program to make CILT more inclusive by extending the program to all stakeholders in line with CILT’s international guidelines. This enabled all stakeholders engaged in each sector and associated service organizations to be part of CILT, adding value to our industry and institute is grateful to the 13 Patron Partners who have been with CILT since the inception in 2011 and the 12 new CPs who have joined us over the past few years reaching the total CP members to 25. “We are encouraged by the trust CPs have placed on CILT through their continuous support by being part of the CP program” she said.

Another notable achievement she highlighted was the partnership agreement with USAID funded YouLead Project to support YPF and WiLAT in career guidance and to improve soft skills and leadership development to improve employability and career progression and she commended the efforts of the Vice Chairman-Membership development and his team for the significant achievement.


She further mentioned that past tenure saw a hive of activities through CILT’s packed event calendar, which reached both members and non-members alike. CILT introduced National Logistics and Transport Excellence Awards on 17th July 2018 for the first time, to felicitate an eminent individual and Corporates to recognize their contribution to the industry. Hon. Prime Minister was the Chief Guest at the awards. The event was a great success and CILT will conduct this as a biennial event moving forward.

CILT also organized its flagship event, the International Conference, on 19th September with a topical theme titled “Staying Relevant in a Digitally Connected Future”, which was a great success. Three memorial lectures and the two “Logistics Leaders Evenings” were well attended. CILT believe in collaboration and conducted five joint events with Company of Master Mariners, SLAAS Section C, PIM Alumni, Next Campus and Verite Research. CILT and WiLAT were invited to partner and endorse eight conferences and events. In addition WiLAT and YPF, conducted three field visits, which was value adding to membership.  She thanked Vice Chairman Events, and his team for a job well done.


She stressed that CILT Education Subcommittee undertook many initiatives during the past tenure.  CILT International Professional Development Coordinator was invited to conduct a Training of Trainers (TOT) workshop and to conduct accreditation audits. The audit visits were organized in eight universities and private education institutes. Subject mapping and audits have been completed and work is expected to complete and accreditations awarded in May this year. Two public workshops were also organized and the feedback was very encouraging. The road safety initiative will be continued with more focus during the year. “It was very heartening to note the big strides made in education after many years. I am thankful to Vice Chairperson Education, Dr Namali Sirisoma and her team for their hard work” she said.


For the first time CILT was also awarded with a research consultancy project to conduct a “Survey on Railway Freight Movement” as part of Government’s railway master plan development project funded by ADB.  The work was concluded successfully and another project is in the pipeline. We will shortly reach out to our membership to be part of a Research & Consultancy Cell within CILT to broad base our contribution to supply chain, logistics and transport sectors.


CILT was also very active in the Policy Advocacy and in External Engagement space.  CILT was consulted on many occasions and we were invited as well as proactively engaged at various fora to share our views and provide advice to policy makers. I am thankful to Past Chairman Saliya Senanayake and Policy Advocacy and Engagement team for their efforts.


CILT also had three international CILT visitors during the tenure, CILT International President, Kevin Byrne FCILT, CILT international President Elect, Dato Radzak Malek FCILT and CILT International Professional Development Coordinator Jon Harris FCILT.


She said in her speech that there is much to report in building the professional image of CILT. CILT had an eventful year and received good media exposure for our professional activities on TV, radio and in print media. This was enhanced with the active presence in social media. CILT’s LINK magazine for the first time published four issues. The contents and quality of the magazine have improved considerably and is of high standard. She thanked PR & Branding Sub Com Chairman and his young LINK editorial team for their commitment and creative touch.


She further said that the council has restructured the Secretariat and put in place the right people and processes to gear up CILT for the future.  She conveyed her gratitude to outgoing Hon Secretary Dr Lalith Edirisinghe, CMILT and his Governance team for their valued contribution and also a special thanks to senior council and fellow member, Mr HA Premaratne, FCILT for his commitment and dedication in the preparation of by-laws.


Finally she extended Institute’s tribute to the Council, WiLAT Exco, YPF Core Committee and outgoing WiLAT Chairperson Dhashma Karunanayake, CMILT and YPF Chairman Biman Hettiaarachchi, MILT for their contribution made to WiLAT and YPF. She also thanked the CILT Secretariat and the membership for the unstinted support and commitment to make the 2018/2019 tenure a productive one.


CILT bylaws were unanimously adopted by the membership at the Annual General Meeting.


Having re-elected as the Chairperson for the new term, while addressing the gathering she said that our challenge is to maintain the momentum we have created and transform CILT to deliver more value to our membership and industry.  


She said that her first priority is to get the people, processes and systems in our Secretariat in place to gear up to manage the expanding scope of our institute activities and improve the service delivery further to our members and closely engage with them to understand their needs to deliver more value.


She mentioned that institute was grateful to their Corporate Partners for their continued support. CILT’s engagement with our Corporate Partners will be improved further during the new term with more value addition.


It was indicated that Institute has been able to cross 2000 membership mark mainly due to their student members and expect to reach 1000 membership mark with MILT and CMILT member categories during this new term.  CILT has been a Colombo centric professional body and has embarked on a program to reach out to its’ presence to other provinces too.  As a first step, CILT had a kick off meeting at University of Peradeniya to set up the Central Chapter. CILT has received inquiries from Southern and Northern provinces as well she said.


She finally said that, CILT also plan to intensify its involvement in policy advocacy space and the Education activities will be further strengthened. She said that Members of CILT may come from different sectors with different views and ideas, but we have one thing in common that is we all are transport; logistics and supply chain professionals and we work towards one common goal collectively as one team with a common Purpose, Passion and be Productive in our endeavors in making CILT a professional body of choice.

CILT Sri Lanka Council – 2019


Seated from left to right

Mr Saliya Senanayake FCILT(Past Chairman), Mr Upali Gunawardena FCILT (Hon. Treasurer), Mr Chaminda Perer CMILT(Hon. Secretary), Mr Channaka de Alwis CMILT(Vice Chairperson), Ms Gayani de Alwis CMILT(Chairperson), Mr Gihan Jayasinghe CMILT(Vice Chairperson),  Dr Ms Namali Sirisoma CMILT (Vice Chairperson), Mr Niral Kadawathaarachchi CMILT (Past Chairman) Mr HA Premaratne FCILT


Standing from left to right

Capt. Peshala Medagama CMILT, Mr. Agith Ekanayake CMILT, Mr Chandima Hulangamuwa CMILT, Dr Priyangani Jayasundera CMILT, Mrs. Dhashma Karunaratne CMILT , Mrs. Vijitha Weerasinghe CMILT , Mr. Ravi Edirisinghe CMILT,  Mr. Upali De Soyza CMILT


Standing in the back row from left to right

Dr. Indika Sigera CMILT, Mr. Ibrahim Saleem CMILT, Mr Chanaka Gunatilake CMILT, Mr. Henry de Silva CMILT, Dr.Mahinda Bandara CMILT


Absent: Capt Lasitha Cumaratunga , CMILT (Immediate Past  Chairman)

Newly elected Chairperson of CILT Ms Gayani de Alwis, CMILT addressing the gathering

Newly elected office bearers left to right  

Ms Gayani de Alwis, CMILT (Chairperson), Mr. Chaminda Perera, CMILT (Hon Secretary), Mr Upali Gunawardena, FCILT (Hon Treasurer) and Mr Vasantha Dias (Secretary General)


The Chartered Institute of Logistics and Transport (CILT) is a leading global professional body associated with the logistics, transport and supply chain industry. The Institute holds unparalleled international recognition and works towards achieving its objectives of promoting and encouraging the art and science of logistics and transport through its membership and its educational qualifications. With a global membership of over 35,000 in 35 countries across the globe, CILT provides a professional identity to those in the ever expanding logistics and transport sector. It is a strong, active and a unified professional association that is able to speak with authority on strategic issues affecting businesses and people in the industry and support their careers.



CILT Secretariat

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