For their years of service and outstanding contributions to the parish of St. James, 14 individuals and one entity were the recipients of the annual Heroes Day’ Awards, sponsored by the St. James Municipal Corporation.
The awards were handed out at the Montego Bay Cultural Centre on October 19, in two categories – the Sam Sharpe Awards – named for one of St. James’ favourite sons, Baptist preacher and National Hero, the Right Excellent Samuel Sharpe; and the Mayor’s Special Awards.
The ceremony was held under the theme ‘Celebrating a Heritage of Resilience and Pride’.
Newly appointed Mayor of Montego Bay, Councillor Leeroy Williams, said the special awards were based on recommendations from the civic community, and the persons were rewarded for outstanding achievements in the areas of: National Security, Education, Agriculture, Tourism, Health, Commerce and Industry, Journalism, Sports, Arts and Culture, and Community Service.
The non-profit group Le Antonio’s Foundation was rewarded for community service, while Simon Casserly received for Sports; Joan Dickson, Susan Simms and Theresa Morgan-Williams for Education; Lenford Johnson for National Security’ and Delroy Mowatt for Health.
The Sam Sharpe awardees were Durrant Brown, who was cited for his tireless body of work in Sports; Detective Inspector Cecil Clarke in the area of National Security and as an outstanding member of the Jamaica Constabulary Force (JCF); Dr. Derek Harvey and Lennox Wallace for exemplary work in the field of Health; Marcia Powell for outstanding work in Community Service; Iron Noble for outstanding achievements in Tourism, and veteran newsman, Kingsley Thompson, for his years of contribution to Journalism and Media.
Mayor Williams, who is also Chairman of the St. James Municipal Corporation, in congratulating all the awardees, said he is particularly pleased that despite all the challenges posed by the COVID-19 global pandemic, the Corporation and its hard-working team and partners were still able to recognise the oftentimes overlooked and true unsung heroes of St. James.
“We had a selection process where these awards were carefully chosen. We at the Municipality are always of the view that exceptional work deserves to be recognised and rewarded,” he said.
The annual awards are also open to citizens of St. James who live abroad. Only Jamaican nationals are eligible and self-nomination or nomination of previous recipients of National Honours and Awards is not allowed.