May 2019 Volume 15

PM Andrew Holness addresses Atlanta Chamber’s Inaugural Awards Banquet

Staff reporter KC Times
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The Jamaican Chamber of Commerce of Atlanta (Jamcham) held its inaugural Awards banquet at the Georgia Tech Hotel and Conference Center on Saturday, April 20th 2019.

The sold out event featured Jamaica’s Prime Minister the Honorable Andrew Holness, ON, MP and other dignitaries including Jamaica’s Ambassador to the United States, Her Excellency Audrey Marks, Consul-General Oliver Mair, Donna McLeod the 1st Jamaican-American elected to the Georgia House of Representatives and Honorary Consul to Atlanta, Dr. Elaine Bryan.

Copeland Comrie was presented the Lowell Hawthorne Person of the Year Award by Dr. Bryan. Marjorie Wilson received a nomination certificate in this category.

The Atlanta-Montego Bay Sister Cities Committee was presented with the Community Service of the Year Award by Ambassador Marks.

Kenneth and June Chin of Royal Caribbean Bakery were presented with the Business of the Year Award by the Prime Minister. Dr. Jim Foster received a nomination certificate in this category.

The Chairman’s awards for stewardship were presented to Secretary Ian Laing and chamber member Sandra Gammon by the chamber’s president Suzette Arnold.

Dr. David Panton, Chairman of Jamcham introduced the Prime Minister who gave an optimistic and buoyant speech on the prospects for continued economic progress in Jamaica. He stressed the importance of the Jamaican Diaspora to the island’s growth and development and encouraged everyone to invest in the growing economy. “The potential for trade between Atlanta and Jamaica is significant,” he added. He also suggested the audience endeavor to buy homes on the island as the real estate market is currently on fire.

He cited the stellar performance of the Jamaican stock market – it was #1 in the world last year. He mentioned the dramatic drop in unemployment. Jamaican’s debt to GDP has fallen from a high of 140+ percent to 90+ percent he proudly announced. “The next time you come to Jamaica,” he said “Constant Spring road will be fixed, Mandela highway and three miles will be improved.”

Several KC Old Boys were in attendance. They included world renown sculptor Basil Watson who was a special guest of the AJA; Mr. Kevin Boothe who received a nomination certificate in the Person of the Year category and Mr. Tony Reid who although absent was awarded a nomination certificate in the Business of the Year category on behalf Kool Running’s Restaurant.

Former KCOBA Atlanta Chapter President Dr. Glen Laman, a founding member and former president of Jamcham, presented a copy of his book, Jamaican Entrepreneurship, to the Prime Minister after his speech.

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