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Caribbean American Healthcare Awards

Photo gallery

Grroovin’ and movin’: Motivational speaker Dennis Rahiim Watson stirs up the celebration.
Top nurse: Kirstie Toussaint’s (left) empathetic nature drew her to a career as a registered nurse and director of Patient Care Services for Nursing Administration at Lenox Hill Hospital.
Local rep: Registered nurse Eva James (left) is a union contract administrator representing the 1,000 registered nurses at Mount Sinai Beth Israel.
Thanks, grandma: Dr. Maurice E. Wright, chief medical officer of Harlem Hospital and senior associate dean of Columbia University, credits his grandmother, a farmer’s wife, as having the most influence on his three-decade-long career.
Two of a kind: Sybilla Daniel-Douglas (left), a registered nurse and asthma educator at Brookdale University Hospital and Medical Center, shares the spotlight with fellow honoree Lorena McEachrane, a private duty nurse with Beverly’s Home Care.
Silver tenure: Claudya C. Verdiner (third from left), site director at NYU Lutheran Family Health Centers-Caribbean American, has dedicated nearly 25 years ensuring people have access to quality health care.
She’s a hero: CNG executive vice president of advertising Amanda Tarley (left) presents an award to army nurse Adella Bodden (center), who tended to wounded civilians in the Middle East.
Humble beginnings: Northwell Health registered nurse Yasmine Beausejour began her 21-year career in health care as a teen volunteer at Downstate Hospital.
Climbing the ladder: Verginia Stewart (center) was head nurse in the medical surgical unit at Metropolitan Hospital for 28 years before being appointed to her current position of ambulatory staff nurse.
Career lesson: Fay Randall’s interest in nursing peaked when nurses visited her school in St. Thomas, prompting her rewarding career as head nurse of the surgery clinic at Bellevue Hospital Center.
Heart to heart: Joan Bruce, a staff nurse at Bronx Lebanon Hospital Center, has fun at the podium.
Lovin’ sis’: Liesl S. Hall-Grant — a clinical nurse manager for pediatrics at New York Presbyterian Hospital Queens — began her career helping her ailing brother as a girl growing up in Guyana.
Grassroots gladiator: Manuela Butler (center) became active in the Home Care Employees Union because she saw the need to fight for the rights of home care workers, and change the Federal Fair Labor Standards Act.
Role model: Celia Bramble was inspired to become a Florence Nightingale after seeing her aunt in St. Vincent and the Grenadines — a community midwife with limited formal training — deliver hundreds of babies successfully.
Right direction: Sandy Freeland, operations director at Village Nursing Home, sought a career in health care after watching medical workers try in vain to save her ailing mother. She accepts her award from CNG executive vice president of advertising Amanda Tarley (right).
Awesome ascension: Natasha Burke worked her way up from being a teen volunteer at Kingsbrook Jewish Medical Center to being the chief of staff at Kings County Hospital, assisting the chief executive officer.
Bard of health: Multi-faceted Meve Shakespeare (center), director of nursing at the Cobble Health Center,teaches, trains, supervises, and monitors her workers.
Tireless tutor: Margarett Alexandre (center), an assistant professor in the Department of Nursing at CUNY York College, has spent 30 years teaching nursing students, and registered nurses seeking higher certification.
Lauded nurse: Elverine Cadogan-Smartt has received numerous commendations and awards for her work in medical, surgical, psychiatric and emergency units.
Determined doctor: Dr. Cary Daniel, a family practitioner at Maimonides Medical Center, mapped out his career as a young boy in Haiti, after seeing a neighbour struggling with childbirth.
Well connected: Cynthia James-White, director of nursing at the Phoenix Rehabilitation & Nursing Center, is also a former vice president of the Jamaica Nursing Group of New York.
Doctor, doctor: Internist Dr. Frank Denbow (center) was inspired to become a physician by his mother — a pioneering doctor in Guyana. Caribbean Life associate director Kevin Williams makes the presentation.
Oh, baby: Kings County Hospital staff nurse Patricia James works in the maternal child department, caring for pregnant women and providing them with pre-natal care.
Frontline warrior: Dr. Patricia Marthone (center), a vice president of the Healthcare Union in the Registered Nurses’ Division, began her medical career in the trenches, as a volunteer first responder, then an Emergency Medical Technician, and finally a dispatcher for an ambulance service.
Wonder woman: D. Beverly Foster (center), an adult nurse practitioner at the Zucker-Hillside Hospital, has coordinated and participated in medical missions to Grenada, Carriacou, Haiti, Ghana, Ethiopia, and Tanzania.
Dr. Feelgood: Dr. Tanesha Lawrence is a staff physician at the New York Children’s Health Project, providing comprehensive medical care to domestic violence victims in homeless shelters, including walk-in medical care services.
Medical marvel:Internationally known HIV specialist Dr. Ricardo Orlando Dunner provided a touching moment when he accepted his award still recovering from the multiple facial fractures, concussions and other serious injuries he suffered during a winter volunteer health mission in Honduras, when his bus careened into a ravine and tragically killed several mission workers.
Ace nurturer: Phyllis Payne-Dublin’s (center), former associate director of reimbursement at the Center for Nursing and Rehabilitation, and director of education and assistant director of nursing at River Manor Nursing and Rehabilitation, accepts her award from Caribbean Life associate director Kevin Williams.

Hitting us with their best shot! CNG honors Carib healthcare workers!

CNG’s awards gala at Paradise Caterers hailed some of the best and brightest Caribbean-American healthcare workers for helping make our city chipper. Comment

Margarett Alexandre

Haiti: Born in Gonnaives, Haiti, Margarett Alexandre arrived in the United States at the age of 10, after a five-year detour to Jamaica. Comment

Yasmine Beausejour

Haiti: Yasmine Beausejour migrated from Haiti to Brooklyn at the age of 15. When she was a student at Wingate High School, she discovered the healthcare field as a volunteer at Downstate Hospital. Comment

Adella Bodden, LPN

People: Emigrating from the Cayman Islands as a young girl, Adella Bodden continued her education in Brooklyn. Comment

Celia Bramble

St Vincent: “During my formative years in St. Vincent and the Grenadines,” Colonel Celia Bramble recalls her inspiration to become a nurse, “I watched my aunt, a community midwife with limited formal training in the field of midwifery, deliver hundreds of babies. Comments (1)

Joan Bruce

Jamaica: Joan Bruce was born in a rural community in Springfield, St. Mary, Jamaica, the second of 10 siblings. There, she started her 10-year career as a teacher. Comment

Natasha Burke

Grenada: Natasha Burke was born in Grenada and immigrated to the United States at age 11. When she was 17, she started volunteering at Kingsbrook Jewish Medical Center where her mother worked in radiology. Comment

Manuela Butler

Puerto Rico: Native of Puerto Rico, Manuela Butler started a new career as a home care worker in 1991, putting behind her nearly 20 years as a seamstress, but not her years as the shop steward in Local 155 of the International Ladies Garment Workers Union. Comment

Elverine Cadogan-Smartt

Guyana: In Guyana, after her mother died, Elverine Cadogan-Smartt’s maternal aunt raised her in their small village. Comment

Dr. Cary Daniel

Haiti: Dr. Cary Daniel was born and educated through high school in Haiti where the seeds of being a healthcare provider started. “I witnessed my neighbor suffering so much while giving birth and was helpless while my father transported her from the village to the city hospital.” It was then he knew “that being in the healthcare field would be a direct way to make a difference.” Comment

Sybilla Daniel-Douglas

St Lucia: Sybilla Daniel-Douglas was born in London of Caribbean parents; her mother is from St. Lucia and her father is from Antigua. Comment

Frank A. Denbow, MD, MRCP

Guyana: Already a practicing physician, Dr. Frank Denbow migrated from Guyana several years ago. He is an internist. Comment

Dr. Ricardo Orlando Dunner

Barbados: Dr. Ricardo Orlando Dunner was born in Barbados and immigrated to the United States as a young boy. Newly arrived, he remembers, “At PS. 229, my third grade homeroom teacher told me, ‘You can do it!’” Comment

Angela Edwards

People: It was in Trinidad where Angela Edwards made her career choice after spending her early childhood with Aunt Dol, a nurse who lost her sight. “I read and wrote letters for her and she shared her nursing stories and experiences with me. From then, I knew that I wanted to be a nurse to care for people.” Comment

D. Beverly Foster

Jamaica: D. Beverly Foster hails from Manchester, Jamaica where she attended college and taught at the vocational level before migrating to the United States. Comment

Dr. Fritz Francois

Haiti: Born in Haiti of Haitian and Dominican parents, Dr. Fritz Francois is an associate professor of medicine, chief medical officer and patient safety officer at NYU Langone Medical Center. Comment

Sandy D. Freeland

Antigua: Sandy Freeland chose health care as an avenue to help make a difference in people’s lives. Comment

Lisel S. Hall-Grant

Guyana: A family illness set the course for a young woman’s future. That was the case for Liesl S. Hall-Grant who remembers helping her younger brother in Guyana when he became sick. Comment

Hyacinth Hamilton-Gayle

Jamaica: Hyacinth Hamilton-Gayle was born in Jamaica and reveals, “My field in nursing chose me.” Already trained as a teacher, she joined her parents in New York and Brooklyn Jewish School of Nursing responded to her application. “With encouragement from my mother, I started school. After my first year, I knew that I had found my passion.” Comment

Eva James

Guyana: Born in the United States to Guyanese parents, Eva James spent her formative years through high school in Guyana continuing her education at Brooklyn College, where she earned a Bachelor of Science in Biology. Comment

Patricia James

Guyana: Patricia James left Guyana where she worked as an licensed practical nurse / midwife. Soon after her arrival to the United States, she found employment at New York City Health and Hospital. Comment

Cynthia James-White

Honduras: A daughter of Jamaica, Cynthia James-White’s passion for nursing started at a very young age, particularly when she realized she liked helping people. Her aunt had arthritis and as a young girl, she helped a lot. She immigrated to this country 41 years ago. Comment

Dr. Carl Kenel-Pierre

Haiti: Dr. Carl Kenel-Pierre graduated medical school in Haiti, immigrating not long afterwards to pursue a career in Ob / Gyn. He is an Advantage Care physician and the regional medical director. His medical career spans over four decades. Comments (9)

Tanesha Lawrence

Jamaica: Dr. Tanesha Lawrence left Jamaica at age four with her family settling in Florida, United States. Comment

Lorena McEachrane

Trinidad and Tobago: Lorena F McEachrane, a native of Trinidad and Tobago, immigrated as a child and it is since then that she wanted to be part of the healthcare profession. Comment

Phyllis Payne-Dublin

St Vincent: Hailing from St. Vincent and the Grenadines, Phyllis Payne-Dublin has had a committed nursing career, spanning more than 40 years. In recognition, she received the 2012 Nurse of the Year award from the Caribbean American Nurses Association. Comment

Fay Randall

Jamaica: A daughter of Jamaica, Fay Randall’s career interest peaked when nurses visited at St. Thomas Technical High School. She began her studies at the University Hospital of the West Indies School of Nursing. Comment

Meve Shakespeare

Grenada: Meve Shakespeare got her start as a nurse at the Grenada School of Nursing / Midwifery, immigrating to the United States as a young adult. Ms. Shakespeare has been a nurse for 31 years. Comment

Verginia Stewart, RN

Jamaica: Verginia Stewart, as a young adult in Jamaica, was already a registered nurse when she immigrated to the United States. Comment

Kirstie Toussaint

Dominica: Kirstie Toussaint was born in St. Thomas and raised in the Commonwealth of Dominica. Her empathetic nature drew her to healthcare; Ms. Toussaint works as a registered nurse. Comment

Dr. Maurice E. Wright

Jamaica: Son of Jamaica, Dr. Maurice E. Wright truly has a foot on both sides. Although born in the United States, he grew up and attended high school on the island. He has been in the medical field for 33 years including medical school and is a graduate of Fordham University and Albert Einstein College of Medicine. Comments (1)

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