Monty Alexander Honored at the Annual Caribbean American Heritage Awards

Jazz great Monty Alexander was one of five Jamaicans honored at a special edition of the 19th Annual Caribbean American Heritage (CARAH) Award Gala on November 16th at the Washington Capitol Hilton, in Washington, D.C. The program saluted Jamaica as well as Trinidad and Tobago, as they celebrate 50 years of independence from Britain.

Alexander, who received the Luminary Award, previously bestowed on Cecily Tyson and ‘Toots’ Hibbert, was honored for his world-renowned musical career that spans fifty years. Alexander has collaborated with the likes of Frank Sinatra, Dizzy Gillespie and Quincy Jones among other musical greats, and his music is enjoyed by many generations. Maintaining a rigorous worldwide touring schedule, to date he has recorded 70 albums and there seems to be no stopping him.

William ‘Bunny Rugs’ Clarke, lead singer for Third World, one of the longest running reggae bands of all time, received ICS’ Cultural Ambassador Award. With the band about to celebrate its 40th anniversary, Rugs himself has released 4 solo albums, and been nominated 10 times for the prestigious Grammy Awards as a member of Third World.

President and CEO of the Information Technology Industry Council (ITIC), Dean Garfield, was presented with the Outstanding Contribution to Corporate America Award. Garfield, a well-known advocate for the communications technology sector (ICT), regularly contributes to The Huffington Post where he discusses ways technology affects American politics and the economy.

Editor-in-Chief of Essence magazine Constance C.R. White was honored for Excellence in Journalism. White, a veteran journalist, editor and culture & style expert has served as Style Director, Brand Consultant and Spokesperson for eBay, where she developed content and strategies aimed at women and conceived and created eBay’s first web-zine. [. . .] Ms. White is the author of “Stylenoir”, a ground breaking book on black style, published by Perigee/Putnam. A member of the National Association of Black Journalists, her work has appeared in British Vogue, Glamour, and The International Herald Tribune.

In the Order of Distinction by the Jamaican govern was Colin Channer, founder of the Calabash International Literary Festival, held on Jamaica’s South Coast, who received the Award for Excellence in Literature. Called the Bob Marley of Jamaican literature, Channer, author and editor of several novels and short story collections, is credited with reigniting the Caribbean literary canon.

Other CARAH 2012 Honorees included Anya Ayoung Chee, of Project Runway fame; Trinidad and Tobago soccer star Shaka Hislop, also of ESPN fame; Robert Greenidge, PanMaster with the Jimmy Buffett Band; and Andy Ingraham, CEO of National Association of Black Hotel Owners, Operators and Developers.

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[Photo by Michel Vonlathen.]

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