JIS News

Story Highlights

  • Renowned journalist and Managing Director of Marcia Erskine and Associates, Marcia Erskine is the recipient of the 2014 Marcella Martinez award.
  • Freelance journalist, Baz Dreisinger, has received the 2014 Marcia Vickery-Wallace award.
  • The Marcia Vickery-Wallace and Marcella Martinez awards honor the significant achievements of individuals whose work have shared the Caribbean experience with the world.

Renowned journalist and Managing Director of Marcia Erskine and Associates, Marcia Erskine is the recipient of the 2014 Marcella Martinez award, while freelance journalist, Baz Dreisinger, has received the 2014 Marcia Vickery-Wallace award.

The recipients, who were chosen because of their commitment to marketing the Caribbean as a premier travel region, were presented with their awards during the Caribbean Tourism Organization’s (CTO) Caribbean Media Awards Luncheon, held at the New Yorker Hotel as part of the activities to mark Caribbean Week 2014, in New York.

In presenting this year’s Marcella Martinez award to Ms. Erskine, Deputy of Director of Tourism Donnie Dawson, said, “Marcia embodies the spirit behind this award and those who know her know that her passion for the region is undeniable”.

He said her impact is far-reaching, having developed and implemented public relations support for several tourism related entities, including the Jamaica Hotel and Tourist Association, British Airways, Delta Airlines, BWIA, Half Moon Resort, Jamaica Pegasus Hotel, Hotel Four Seasons, the Wyndham Kingston Hotel as well as ESPN Caribbean.

In the Caribbean, Mrs. Erskine served as public relations representative for British Airways, spanning the entire region with responsibility for Jamaica, Trinidad and Tobago, Cayman Islands, the Bahamas and the Turks and Caicos Islands.

She has also led teams of Jamaican hoteliers on overseas marketing missions throughout the Caribbean, the United States, and Europe. Her company has had the distinction of representing the Barbados Tourism Authority for several years, and during that time hosted a number of Crop Over Festival promotions in Kingston.

The Marcia Vickery-Wallace and Marcella Martinez awards honor the significant achievements of individuals whose work have shared the Caribbean experience with the world.

Established in 2004, the Marcella Martinez Award is presented annually by the Jamaica Tourist Board (JTB) for unparalleled achievement in the design and implementation of successful programmes to strengthen and support Caribbean tourism.

The award is named in honor of Jamaican, Marcella Martinez, who dedicated her extraordinary career as a public relations professional to the promotion of tourism in the Caribbean.

In presenting the Marcia Vickery-Wallace Award to Ms. Dreisinger, Jamaica Tourist Board’s Regional Director, Airline and Tour Operator, Anthony King said while she has written extensively about the Caribbean, her most compelling features were two New York Times cover stories in which she explored the history of Caribbean rum and cocoa.

Mr. King noted that while every island has a piece of her heart, Ms. Dreisinger lists Jamaica as her most memorable.

Ms. Dreisinger whose love for the Caribbean, its culture, music and lifestyle is unparalleled, earned the award for her dedication and commitment to reporting on the Caribbean region.  She is well traveled and has written numerous stories that reflect each island’s cultural nuances – going beyond the sun, sand and sea to explore off the beaten path locations, said Mr. King.

Currently, Ms. Dreisinger serves as an Associate Professor of English at John Jay College.

The Marcia Vickery-Wallace Award was established in 1987 as a tribute to Marcia Vickery-Wallace, former editor of Brides Magazine.

Each year the JTB, in conjunction with the CTO, dedicates an award in her memory to a journalist who has followed in her footsteps with the same dedication to promoting the Caribbean region.