[MIRAMAR] – Ten community stalwarts in South Florida continuing the legacy and works of Jamaica’s National Hero, Marcus Mosiah Garvey were recipients of the Community Excellence Award celebrating Black History Month and Reggae Month. Making the presentations were Miramar Commissioner Maxwell Chambers and Jamaica’s Consul General Oliver Mair. Mr. Mair described the event as “undoubtedly a phenomenal ending to Black History Month and Reggae Month activities here in the Diaspora.”
“Celebrating Garvey & Reggae” was the theme of the finale held at the Miramar Performing Arts Theater, last Monday (Feb. 28).
Community Excellence Award Honorees
According to Consul General Mair, these ten honorees were all recognized for their works in continuing Garvey’s message or embodying his principles. The award recipients were:
- Mrs. Jean Garvey – wife of late Marcus Garvey, Jr.
- Geoff Philp – Author / Poet
- Priest Dougie Smith and I. Jabulani Tafari – Principals of the Rootz Foundation Inc.
- Dale Holness – Former Broward County Mayor
- Andy Ballentine – Artist
- Michael Dawson – Author, playwright and entrepreneur
- Norman “Humble Lion” Lawrence – Media personality
- Kymani Marley – Internationally renowned reggae artist
- Keith ‘Anthony B’ Blair – Internationally renowned reggae artists
Rootz Foundation Vice President, I. Jabulani Tafari, was gratified for the recognition “as this was even more meaningful being acknowledged through Black History and Reggae Month”, he added.
The entire audience in the fully packed 800-seat theater enjoyed an evening of free entertainment with featured performances from ASHE. The internationally known performing arts group from Jamaica. As they brought the house to encore cheers with productions of song, dance and drama depicting valuable lessons from the teachings of Garvey, champion of black empowerment.
Recipients of several international awards for outstanding performances, the ASHE Company through their works remain committed to the preservation and renewal of Jamaican/Afro-Caribbean culture through ‘edutainment’ – innovativeness in education for community transformation and social development.
Consul General Mair was pleased with the positive feedback from community responses highlighting Marcus Garvey through the performances from ASHE as well as recognizing the community stalwarts.
Ms. Mary Mills, resident of Miramar said that “the three-hour free concert was an unforgettable experience”. “What a night’ she smiled, expressing appreciation to the programme coordinators – Office of Miramar Commissioner Maxwell Chambers, and the Consulate General of Jamaica – for what she described as a great evening of outstanding entertainment.
Other acts included cameo performance from Kymani Marley, and Anthony B. One of Jamaica’s premier performing artists, Bunny Rose invited Consul General Mair on stage as they serenaded the awardees with the musical classic “My Way”. Jamaican tenor, Steve Higgins sung the USA and Jamaican National Anthems while Claudia Chance sang the UNIA Anthem. Mistress of Ceremonies was South Florida’s cultural entertainer, Ms. Sophia Nicholson.
This was an evening of “thrilling and exhilarating performances, a show no one should have missed” according to Rootz Foundation Vice President, I. Jabulani Tafari.