The dedication and selfless work of the Guyana Tri-State Alliance, headed by Patricia Jordan-Langford, received honorable recognition for its 25 years of service during a colorful presentation at Brooklyn Borough Hall on July 22.
For this, members of the non-profit received Proclamations, Community Service Awards and Citations from Borough President Eric Adams, Congresswoman Yvette D. Clarke and Councilmember Mathieu Eugene, respectively.
The honorees included, Patricia Jordan-Langford, Lynette Marshall, Rozanna Beaumont, Yvonne Marcus, Phyllis Cort, Loraine Edinboro, Dr. Roslin Khan, Anthony Carter, Yvonne Chaliah, Elizabeth Gonsalves, Rupert Cort and Bhaskar Chaliah.
The Youth Award went to talented student Kamiyah Parchment, for academic excellence, while the Golden Arrowhead of Achievement - Posthumous Awards from the Alliance honored freedom fighters, Forbes Sampson Burnhan and Cheddi Berret Jagan.
Tony Burnham accepted the award for his uncle, while President Cheddi Berret Jagan’s award, was accepted by Vishnu Mahadeo.
Sandra Chapman, a Guyanese-American, and chief program officer in Brooklyn Borough Hall, presented a Proclamation to the Alliance.
The evening also commemorated Guyana’s Golden Jubilee of Independence with a unity and thanksgiving celebration.
Calling Guyanese a rich and diverse community, Borough President Eric Adams commended the expatriates for bringing their food, culture and dialect to Brooklyn which he called the Georgetown of America.
“When you look at the six ethnic groups that make up your country, it is clear your dance, music and food, make Brooklyn the Georgetown of America,” said the politician, adding “you bring a flavor to what we have to offer.”
“This is not my house, it is your house, you grace us with your presence,” said Adams.
“I was elected to serve you. I will continue to be a public servant,” said Adams who called on the immigrants — who have a vote, to go out and vote during the upcoming Presidential election.
“Fifty years have passed by since you received your independence, and you understand the flavor of this country, you do not have to deny your birth-hood, this is one of the few countries on the globe where you could love your adopted country and love your homeland,” said the borough president.
Congresswoman Yvette D. Clarke in turn called the expats wonderful, beautiful, exceptional Guyanese, and said it was an honor to represent such a diverse and dynamic district. “Despite the challenges and growth struggles the homeland faced on its path to independence, it succeeded to become a stronger sovereign nation,” said Clarke, who represents the 9th Congressional District.
“I want to remind you that you are obligated to get out and vote, it is exercising your franchise in the U.S., like many other immigrant communities.”
Councilmember Mathieu Eugene congratulated the Tri-State Alliance and Guyana on its accomplishments and said the ancestors made a sacrifice for Guyana.
“Thanks for your contribution to Brooklyn. You bring a vibrancy and diversity to the 40th district. Thank you very much,” he said and complimented Jordan-Langford for her vision and commitment to the Guyanese community.
The Haitian-born Eugene encouraged youth to grasp the opportunities available to them, reminding them of his achievement. He then called on Guyanese to visit his office to fulfill their social needs.
Deputy Consul General Jacqelyn Hamer delivered an in-depth history of Guyana’s trailblazers and their journey to independence, while indigenous leader, David Correira traced the history of his people.
Themed “Our Unity Is Our Strength,” President Jordan-Langford, who was named Ambassador of Brooklyn by Eric Adams, said through service, “we take part in our shared commitment to create a more perfect union. Each time a man stands up for an ideal or acts to improve the lot of others or strike out against injustice, he sends forth a ripple of hope.”
“The Guyana Tri-State Alliance has been doing this for 25 years and many of our members have been part of GTSA for just that length of time,” she added.
The multi-cultural event, which was emceed by radio personalities, Tanuja Ragoo, presented artistic tributes that included a praise song by Anthony Alleyne, an African medley by Impressions Dance Theatre, choreographed by Wayne Daniels, and a moving drum salute by Akoyaw Rudder.
Singer Courtney Noel inspired the audience to wave their flags with his song “I love My Golden Arrowhead,” a tribute to Guyana’s symbol of freedom. Professor Keith Proctor also delivered a musical presentation.
Urvashie Kisson and Zama performed radiant Indian dances, during the festivities blessed by Bishop Cummings Pandit Suresh Sugrim, Imam Nasar Musttafa and others.