Jamaicans in the Southern USA Honored for Outstanding Community Contribution

Jamaicans in the Southern USA Honoured for Outstanding Community Contribution

2021 Jamaican Diaspora Award Recipients

[SOUTH FLORIDA] – Ten persons and two community groups across the Southern USA Diaspora were recipients of the Consulate General of Jamaica, Miami Annual Community Awards on Sunday (Nov. 7), for their outstanding contribution to Jamaica’s national development and to the Diaspora.

Luminary Honourees

Honourees receiving the Consulate General’s Heritage Awards included:

  • Andrew Adams of the Jamaica Foundation of Houston (JFH) for  Public Service;
  • Pastor Robert Stewart, Senior Pastor Pentecostal Tabernacle, Miami, for Faith and Religious Leadership;
  • Ms. Audrey Anderson, board member of the Louise Bennett Coverley Heritage Council (LBCHC), and Xavier Murphy, Media Consultant and Founder of Jamaicans.com for their work in the Cultural Arts (Media, Entertainment, Culture);
  • Patrick Cha Fong, President of Kingston Miami Trading for Business Leadership;
  • Dr. Yvonne Smith, Atlanta-Montego Bay Sister Cities Committee for her work in Health Care;
  • Miss Briana Nichole Williams, Jamaican International Olympian athlete for her inspiration in Youth Excellence;
  • Pauline Jolly, PhD., Educator, and board member of Central Alabama Caribbean American Organization (CACAO) in Education;
  • Bruce Palmer, President, Jamaica United Relief Organization (JURA) for Philanthropy and Social Services.
Special Community Honour

The Special Community Honour was awarded to Ms. Andrea Dixon, Registered Nurse, who was recognized as an outstanding humanitarian and philanthropist.

Community Awards

There were two Community Awards presented:

  • Louise Bennett Coverley Heritage Council (LBCHC) for outstanding contribution to Jamaica’s rich cultural heritage in the Diaspora;
  • Grace Kennedy Foods (USA) for contribution as a corporate/community partner
Congratulatory Message 
Jamaica’s Consul General, Oliver Mair

Consul General, Oliver Mair

Jamaica’s Consul General, Oliver Mair in congratulating the awardees emphasized that the prestigious presentation ceremony continues the tradition of recognizing Jamaicans in the Diaspora. Especially those who have positively impacted their community.

He also noted that these persons were nominated and selection by a panel of volunteers established by the Office of the Consulate General.  The individual or association were nominated for significant impact on the Southern USA, Jamaican Diaspora community under the jurisdiction of this Consulate.

According to Mr. Mair, “We are happy to honor members of our Jamaican Diaspora for their contributions to community enrichment, serving as an inspiration and motivation to others”.

The awardees have contributed directly to Jamaica’s national development goals as well as to the Diaspora communities in which they reside, and have positively impacted the local and wider international communities.  These persons continue to give selflessly in the respective categories in which they were selected’ he continued.  The efforts of these individuals, charitable groups and corporate entity have served to reinforce the connection with Jamaica and the Diaspora as well as engaging the unique cultural identity of Jamaican-Americans, he added.

The nearly two-hour event was sponsored by Victoria Mutual Building Society (VMBS) another outstanding community corporate partner.

Celebratory Entertainment

There was featured entertainment by Jamaica’s renowned performers. Including, The Tenors, bringing to stage famous dance songs like “Ride mi donkey”. In addition, trumpeter, Joshua Bobb, who heralded the awardees on stage to the virtual global audience. Plus, soloist, Sushana Campbell, who gave a rendition of Whitney Houston’s inspirational hit “I’m alive”.

The National Anthems of the United States and Jamaica were rendered by Jamaican tenor, Steve Higgins.

Judge Norman Hemming, Esq., and Janice McIntosh

Judge Norman Hemming, Esq., and Janice McIntosh

The Master and Mistress of Ceremony, respectively, Judge Norman Hemming, Esq., and Janice McIntosh, chief executive of the Blue Mahoe Capital, were applauded for the outstanding job of keeping the audience informed and entertained reflecting in the over 2,000 viewers joining on the 5:00 p.m. Sunday evening social media platforms.

Community Endeavors

Although the formal presentation of the annual Ceremony was affected by the COVID pandemic, Consul General Mair reiterated that several awards were presented informally as persons continued their community endeavors.

Those groups and individuals persons as we saw it fit were acknowledged during that down period.  They included:

  • South Florida Caribbean Chorale directed by Steve Higgins for their contribution to our annual Independence Service
  • Tallawah Mento Band for their contribution to preserving Jamaica’s musical heritage
  • Sierra Norwood Children’s Ensemble for musical contributions at annual Independence Service
  • Atlanta-based Integrity Children’s Fund – assisting the development of underprivileged children in inner cities of Kingston through education
  • Grace – Jamaican Jerk Festival showcasing Jamaica’s rich cultural heritage through our culinary arts, entertainment and cultural presentations, on the global stage
  • Rootz Foundation, Inc. – showcasing the legacy of National Hero Marcus Mosiah Garvey since the annual Symposium began in 2004
  • Airline Executive, Ms. Kay Chong
  • Reverend Horace Ward, Senior Pastor, Holy Family Episcopal Church for outstanding community engagement with the Diaspora
Musical Honorees

Leighton “Pluto” Shervington, Eric Paul Douglas and Desmond “Desi” Gaynor were also acknowledged during Reggae Month earlier this year (February 2021). Specifically, for their contribution and commitment to showcasing reggae music on the international stage.

The list of honorees will be added to the list of previous recipients which can be accessed on the Consulate General’s website.

 

 

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