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Griffin awards celebrates the brightest

Model Kesha Blackwood, right, at the Jamaican Griffin awards.
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Honoring some of the best.

The Griffin Awards honored four individuals and alumni of Jamaica College at the SVA Theatre in Manhattan on April 8.

This year’s honorees were Andrew Ewen, who was awarded with the Technology Innovation Award, and there were two awards for Distinguished Alumnus presented to actor Winston Stona, and the late filmmaker Perry Henzell, whose widow accepted his award. Jamaica’s Minister of Education Ruel Reid was also honored and bestowed with the Man of the Decade in Education Award.

At the ceremony, Reid spoke to guests about Jamaica’s education and room for improvement and promised $50 million to fund Jamaica’s nationwide robotics project, a request spearheaded and pushed by the Jamaica College Old Boys Association of New York.

The annual fundraising gala organised by the Jamaica College Old Boys Association of New York, praises Jamaicans locally and abroad for their hard their work in various fields and sectors, said a member of the association’s board.

“The Griffin Awards recognizes Jamaicans and other friends of Jamaicans in arts and education, and in business and technology — that’s the purpose of the awards,” said Don Jones, a member of the advisory board.

Jones said the ceremony spotlights members of society molding a future for Jamaicans.

“It’s important and we need to recognize those people who are making great contributions to our people,” he said.

Perry Henzell’s popular 1972 film, “The Harder They Come,” which celebrates its 45th anniversary this year and is known as one of the most influential movies in Jamaican cinema was shown at the event.

One first time guest at the event shared similar thoughts about the importance of highlighting education for Caribbean immigrants, and was happy to show show support to the honorees.

“It’s education that is the key and it’s a huge step to success for all us — the people here and the people migrating here,” said Keisha Blackwood. “I was really happy that I went and had this experience.”

Reach reporter Alexandra Simon at (718) 260–8310 or e-mail her at asimon@cnglocal.com.

Updated 3:27 pm, April 14, 2017
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