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  • Nine outstanding Jamaicans have been awarded Musgrave Medals by the Institute of Jamaica, in recognition of notable contributions in the literary, scientific and artistic fields.
  • Topping the list of awardees are renowned author and playwright, Anthony Winkler; researcher and medical doctor, Professor Celia Christie-Samuels; and art educator and former head of the School of Visual Arts at the Edna Manley College, Petrona Morrison.
  • They have been awarded Gold Medals for their notable contributions in their respective fields. The awards were presented by the Institute on October 22.

Nine outstanding Jamaicans have been awarded Musgrave Medals by the Institute of Jamaica, in recognition of notable contributions in the literary, scientific and artistic fields.

Topping the list of awardees are renowned author and playwright, Anthony Winkler; researcher and medical doctor, Professor Celia Christie-Samuels; and art educator and former head of the School of Visual Arts at the Edna Manley College, Petrona Morrison. They have been awarded Gold Medals for their notable contributions in their respective fields. The awards were presented by the Institute on October 22.

Mr. Winkler who has distinguished himself in the field of literature is known for his works – The Painted Canoe; The Great Yacht Race; God, Carlos and The Lunatic. The latter proved to be so popular that a film adaptation was made and released in Jamaica in 1990, followed by a premiere in the United States in 1992.

Professor Christie-Samuels is currently the first female Professor and Chair of Paediatrics, including infectious disease, epidemiology and public health at the faculty of medical sciences at the Mona campus.

Her research includes clinical drug and vaccine trials, and studies on the risk factors for HIV/AIDS in women and children in Latin America and the Caribbean.

Ms. Morrison has distinguished herself as a ground-breaking and critically acclaimed contemporary artist. Her earliest works were fairly conventional, figurative paintings and drawings with autobiographical overtones, but her art took a different course in the late 1980s when she started producing textural reliefs and assemblages that incorporated discarded materials

Silver Musgrave Medals were also presented to researcher and lecturer, Dr. Karl Aiken; music producer, Donovan Germain; and jeweller and metal-smith, Jasmine Thomas Girvan.

With active involvement in fisheries research since 1971, Dr. Aiken has distinguished himself in the field of marine science. His research activities range from the assessment of spiny lobsters, crabs, reef fishes and other marine life to the development of management systems in the queen conch industry.

Mr. Germain, who heads Penthouse Records, was recognised for his more than 40 years service to the local music industry.

He has worked with several of the island’s top entertainers and through his insight and creativity, the careers of Marcia Griffiths, Beres Hammond and the late Gregory Isaacs were re-launched during the 1990s.

Ms. Thomas-Girvan’s work is intimately connected with the Caribbean life-world, natural and manmade, and speaks eloquently and with uncanny beauty about the historical and contemporary Caribbean experience. She lives in Trinidad and Tobago and was not present to accept her award.

Musgrave Bronze Medals were awarded to music producer, Augustus Clarke; physicist, Dr. Tannecia Stephenson; and artist, Phillip Thomas

Mr. Clarke has served the industry for more than four decades. Through his Music Works recording studio, he produced some recognisable reggae classics. As mentor and excellent judge of character, he brought out the best in the business – engineer, musician and management – creating the crisp, digital productions that epitomize Dance Hall of the 1990s.

Lecturer in the Department of Physics, Dr. Stephenson has been affiliated with several climate variability and change projects and has published over 25 journal articles, technical reports and short monograph with collaborators.

Mr. Thomas currently teaches painting at the Edna Manley College School of Art, his alma mater, where he attained a Bachelor’s of Fine Arts in Painting and in the process earned the coveted Albert Huie Prize for painting.  He has exhibited widely in Jamaica and internationally.

Responding on behalf of the awardees, Ms. Morrison expressed gratitude to the Council of the Institute for recognising them with the prestigious awards.

“Our work has not been pursued for honours and awards, but out of a commitment to perform to the best of our abilities in our chosen fields. But, it is both humbling and heartening to be acknowledged for this work,” she said.

The Musgrave Medal is one of the oldest awards of its kind in the Western Hemisphere. Presented for the first time in 1897, it was introduced as a memorial to Sir Anthony Musgrave, who founded the Institute in 1879, during his tenure as Governor of Jamaica.

A Gold medal is awarded for distinguished eminence, Silver for outstanding merit, and Bronze for merit in the fields of literature, science or art.