Quality in business and in banking can only be achieved by hiring, empowering, and supporting people of quality with dedication and integrity. And this is what Joseph Rizk, the managing director of Arab Bank Australia, believes in and strives for when he says, “what’s important is the way people relate to each other.” Mr. Rizk is another prominent Lebanese-Australian figure who was awarded the Medal of the Order of Australia for his outstanding contributions to the banking sector.
Joseph arrived to Australia from Lebanon alongside his parents in 1958 and attended school in Bankstown. Initially, his plan was to pursue a career in industrial chemistry; however, he later found an interest in the banking sector in which he remains and thrives. In 1978, Joseph joined the National Bank of Australia where he held senior executive positions for thirty-one years. Later in 2005, he joined the Arab Bank Australia as a chief banking officer, until he became its managing director and CEO five years later.
Mr. Rizk has made a wide number of valuable and extraordinary contributions to the banking sector in Australia. He played a major role in the significant growth experienced by the Arab Bank, and his work was the driving force that helped maintain the bank’s strong performance during the financial crisis. By adhering to strong customer-oriented values, the Arab Bank was awarded a variety of prestigious awards from Money Magazine in 2010.
Aside from his work in banking and finance, Joseph Rizk is a renowned philanthropist with invaluable contributions for a variety of causes. He played an important role in creating the quiet room in the palliative care unit of Westmead Hospital, in addition to providing wheelchairs and a Buggy for the comfortable transport of patients within the hospital. In addition to that, Joseph supports the Breast Cancer Institute, has been a director of the Australian Lebanese Chamber of Commerce, presides over the Westmead Medical Research Foundation, and holds positions in the Italian Opera Foundation Association and Westmead Millenium Institute, among other things.
Mr. Joseph Rizk OAM, whether as a banker or as a humanitarian, has given much and continues to give to the community, especially the Lebanese and Arab community in Australia. His success is an inspiration to many Lebanese and Arab immigrants, and his integrity and care for fellow humans paves the way for a better image of the Lebanese community in Australia and the world.