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AFUWI Gala 2012 Post Event Release

AFUWI Gala 2012 Post Event Release

AFUWI Gala 2012 Post Event Release

The annual American Foundation for the University of the West Indies (AFUWI) Legacy Awards event was staged at the ritzy Pierre Hotel, NYC on Wednesday January 25, 2012. This black tie event is the primary fund raiser for the Foundation and is an ‘A’ list event on New York city’s social calendar. Part p

AFUWI Gala 2012 Post Event Release

The annual American Foundation for the University of the West Indies (AFUWI) Legacy Awards event was staged at the ritzy Pierre Hotel, NYC on Wednesday January 25, 2012. This black tie event is the primary fund raiser for the Foundation and is an ‘A’ list event on New York city’s social calendar. Part proceeds benefits the scholarship program for needy students at the University of the West Indies (UWI), the premier tertiary institution in the English speaking Caribbean .With some forty-six thousand students on roll, largely from the 16 member countries in the region, there is an urgent need by hundreds of these students for financial aid. In 2011, the Foundation awarded 35 scholarships; in 2012 it is hoping to award 50 such scholarships.

Themed ‘The Legacy Continues”, the Honorable Harry Belafonte, OJ, was joined by several speakers in extolling the importance of the institution which boasts world leaders, prime ministers, doctors, lawyers, agriculturalists, teachers and academicians among its growing list of alumni which stands at approximately 90K.

 

“All of you who have come here this evening are more than just a testimony to that fact. We are the urgent reality that the University of the West Indies cannot thrive and continue to exist without our constant nurturing for its growth and development” Commented Dr. Belafonte.

 

Belafonte who serves as honorary patron and is one of the most recognizable faces at the institution’s annual marquee fundraiser, received a standing ovation, following the screening of a trailer  from his  recently released  HBO documentary ‘Sing your Song ’,  featuring his life’s journey and work. From his involvement with the iconic Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., in his relentless advocacy for equal rights and justice for all humankind to his current day role activities with defense of the underserved.

 

This year’s AFUWI Special Award was presented to Byron Lewis, Chairman & CEO, Uniworld Group, Inc, one of the nation’s oldest multicultural advertising agencies with annual net worth in excess of $250,000,000 and based in Brooklyn, NY.

 

The Vice Chancellor’s Award which recognizes corporate and community leaders who are ‘rising stars ‘ went to Ricardo Bryan (JAM), Regional Business Manager for Grace Kennedy (USA), Inc; Barbara Pyle (USA), Corporate VP of Environmental Policy-TBS; and Terrence Samuel (T&T), Deputy Political Editor, The Washington Post.  Bryan, who is at the forefront of his company’s success in growing the market here in the USA spoke on behalf of the honorees in his category, acknowledged the pivotal role that the education he received from his alma mater, the UWI played in his life and echoed sentiments of support for the institution.

 

Caribbean Luminary Awards which are bestowed on persons of Caribbean heritage or Caribbean nationals who have achieved excellence and are recognized as being on the cutting edge in their chosen profession, were presented to Dr. Erroll Byer, Jr., (Barbados/American), Brooklyn Hospital Center, NY; Dr. Milton Haynes (Barbados) OB/GYN specialist on NYC and Basil Paterson, Esq. (Jamaican/Grenadian) of the law firm Meyer, Suozzi, English & Klein, PC.  He is the father of David Patterson, immediate past governor, State of New York. Mr. Paterson was absent due to sudden illness. Dr Milton Haynes accepted the awards on behalf of the Caribbean Luminaries and noted that with recognition comes responsibility and that all awardees were committed to ensuring that the legacy of excellence will prevail.

 

The Corporate Award was presented to JetBlue Airways, represented by Vice President Brandon Nelson with flights serving seven countries in the Caribbean and seeking to expand its routes in the region.  The company was recognized for their service excellence and contribution to the communities of the Caribbean as well as its Diaspora.

 

Three of the thirty five students – Tara Stephens (St. Kitts/Nevis), Arshelle English (Grenada), Kenzil King (Jamaica) – who are currently benefiting directly from scholarships from AFUWI, were the toast of the gala as well, stirring the emotions of an attentive audience with their passionate and moving thank you/testimonials.

 

The star-studded guest list include; David N. Dinkins, former Mayor – City of New York and Honorary Chair; Janet Rollé EVP & Chief Marketing Officer, CNN Worldwide and Gala Chair, Kaye Foster-Cheek, SVP, Onyx Pharmaceuticals and Dinner Chair, Sir George Alleyne, Chancellor-UWI; Professor E. Nigel Harris, Vice Chancellor-UWI; Lowell Hawthorne, President/CEO, Golden Krust Caribbean Bakery & Grill and Chairman-AFUWI Partnership Board and Wesley Wainwright, Chairman –AFUWI.

 

Hosts were; Star Jones (ABC-The View), Brenda Blackmon, WCBS-TV/My 9 News Anchor and Maurice Dubois, WCBS2 News Anchor. Major sponsors included TCW, VERIZON, Onyx Pharmaceuticals ,CNN,NBC Universal ,Answorth Allen ,Johnson and Johnson ,1199,UFT ,Grace Foods USA, UniWorld Group and  JetBlue Airways.

Read more http://www.afuwievents.org/afuwi/2012/02/10/afuwi-gala-2012-post-event-release/

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