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Strong Caribbean support for World Leadership Awards

NEW YORK – The Caribbean’s public and private sector are being lauded for their support of five world leaders to be honored in New York tomorrow at Counterpart International’s 2007 World Leadership Awards at Guastavino’s in New York City.

President of Counterpart International, Lelei LeLaulu, thanked the generosity of the governments of Antigua & Barbuda, Barbados, Bermuda, Dominican Republic, Jamaica, St. Lucia and St. Maarten in particular for their support of the event which will recognize the President of the Dominican Republic, Leonel Fernández; St. Lucia’s Minister of Tourism and Civil Aviation, Senator Allen Chastanet; Paxton Baker, Executive Vice President and General Manager of BET J and BET Digital Networks, and President of BET Event Productions; Public relations legend, David Finn, Co-founder and Chairman of Ruder Finn; and the Caribbean’s largest carrier Air Jamaica, the national carrier of both Jamaica and Barbados.

LeLaulu also commended the commitment shown by companies to the development of sustainable tourism to help harness the world’s largest and fastest growing industry for the betterment of people. He commended lodging franchisor Choice Hotels; Pelican Bay Our Lucaya on Grand Bahama Island; and Harry Edwards Jewelers in St. Lucia for their sponsorship of the awards as well as numerous Caribbean, American, and international companies, such as Canada’s SkyLink Aviation and Logistics and the Global Foundation for Democracy and Development, who have rallied behind the 2007 world leaders and Counterpart’s global sustainable development programs, including the Caribbean Media Exchange on Sustainable Tourism (CMEx) series of educational and networking conferences in the Caribbean.

“Counterpart International is a wonderful resource to all things Caribbean and they have been a strong supporter to Choice Hotels’ ongoing Caribbean initiatives. It is an honor to be a part of the Leadership Awards because the winners represent the absolute best that the Caribbean community has to offer,” said Caroline Racine, Director of Caribbean Franchise Development for Choice Hotels.

“We are truly blessed by the kindness of so many individuals and organisations,” said LeLaulu, who noted that patrons were in store for an evening of networking, fun and entertainment from a number of talented musicians, including steel pan player Adrian Clarke of Barbados; Jamaican singer and guitarist Ky-Enie; and songstress Tinatin from the Republic of Georgia.

The Awards, to be hosted by Emmy Award-winning journalist and travel professional Andria Hall, features a highly anticipated auction of vacations in the Caribbean and the United States, original art, jewelry, hand embroidered jackets and shawls from Kashmir, rare cigars, and other exciting goodies, including special gifts for all attendees.

Making presentations to the honorees will be legendary Jamaican jazz pianist, Monty Alexander; and Muna Heaven, a Jamaican-born attorney who appeared on season six of NBC’s “The Apprentice”; media executive Bill Baker of WNET-13; and Caribbean hotelier Tony Bowen of Windjammer Landing Villa Beach Resort & Spa in St. Lucia.

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