Line Of Honour At Uwi

A broad range of persons in public life are to be honoured by the University of the West Indies later this year.
Among them is Angela Cropper, a former director of the Lloyd Best Institute of the West Indies, publishers of the Trinidad and Tobago Review,  veteran Jamaican journalist John Maxwell whose work is occasionally published in the T&T Review and media entrepreneur Christopher Laird, co-founder of Gayelle The Channel.
Cropper, an environmental activist, will receive a DLitt from UWI for outstanding service to Trinidad and Tobago, the region and the world in relation to issues of the Environment and Sustainable Development. She has recently been appointed Assistant Secretary-General and Executive Director of the United Nations Environment Programme. She is the founder of the Cropper Foundation, a non-governmental organisation committed to sustainable development.
Maxwell will receive the degree DLitt  honoris causa. Involved in media since the 1950s, he has lectured at CARIMAC, UWI, as well as at UTECH, Jamaica. During his six-decade career, he has published over 1,500 columns. Maxwell is a passionate advocate for the protection of beaches and other environmental causes in Jamaica and throughout the region as well as for the political liberation of Haiti.
Christopher Laird will receive the honorary D Litt. Laird is a pioneer in the local television industry whose work is largely devoted to producing original, local content. He co-founded Banyan Productions and Gayelle the Channel as strategic aspects in the development of local television.
Other honorees across the three campuses include Oliver Clarke, chairman and Managing Director of the Gleaner Company, publisher of the Jamaica Gleaner who will be awarded an Honorary DLitt degree. Clarke is often credited with turning the Gleaner, one of the oldest newspaper publishers in the region, into a very successful media enterprise.
Other persons to receive honorary degrees at Mona are Jamaican tourism entrepreneur John Issa will receive the Doctor of Laws degree; publisher and cultural historian Dr Anne Walmsley and scholar historian, Dr Colin A Palmer. Both will receive the Honorary DLitt degree.
At UWI’s Cave Hill Campus, former Prime Minister Sir Lloyd Erskine Sandiford will receive an LLD. The fourth Prime Minister of Barbados, Sir Lloyd has over 32 years of unbroken service to Parliament, and holds the record of the longest serving Minister of Education in Barbados.  Sir Lloyd was heavily involved in both the formation of the Caribbean Examinations Council and the Heads of Government Meeting which made the decision to institute the Caribbean Community and Common Market (CARICOM).
Also to be honoured at Cave Hill are Sir Frederick Ballantyne GCMG (Knight Grand Cross), Governor General of St Vincent and the Grenadines who will receive an Honorary Doctor of Sciences degree;  real estate entrepreneur Paul Bernard Altman who is to be honoured with an LLD and Belize-born novelist Professor Zelma Edgell (DLitt degree).
In addition to Angela Cropper and Christopher Laird, UWI, St. Augustine will confer honorary degrees on Guyanese businessman Yesu Persaud (LLD); petroleum executive Robert B. Riley (LLD) and  biographer Prof. Arnold Rampersad.
Persaud is being honoured for his entrepreneurial and philanthropic endeavours in transforming Demerara Distillers Ltd into one of the most  modern, technologically advanced distilleries in the Caribbean and as founder and chairman of Demerara Bank Ltd, one of the first West Indian banks wholly owned and managed by Guyanese.  He  has been an instrumental figure in the cultural arena, as chairman of the Global Organisation of People of Indian Origin (GOPIO), Guyana.
Riley, Chairman and Chief Executive Officer of BP Trinidad and Tobago, has been at the helm of a company which contributes 25% of the Trinidad and Tobago Government’s tax revenue. Additionally, he is credited with pioneering offshore petroleum platforms in Trinidad and Tobago. Under his leadership, bpTT has doubled its output from 200 to 400 million barrels of oil equivalent daily.
Prof Rampersad (DLitt.) is a Professor of English and the Sara Hart Kimball Professor in the Humanities at Stanford University. Among his many works of biography and criticism was the two-volume “Life of Langston Hughes” for which the first volume was a Pulitzer Prize finalist.
The UWI Open Campus graduation ceremony will be held in Saint Lucia on October 17th.  An LLD will be awarded to Dr. Peggy Antrobus, a dedicated social worker who is well respected for her contributions to society as well as her support of the feminist ideology.
The man who gave Saint Lucia its greatest symbol of independence, The Honourable Dunstan St. Omer will receive a D Litt. St. Omer was the artist responsible for designing the National Flag of Saint Lucia in 1967. He is also the father of the artistic genre known as ‘Prismism,’ which evolved out of his experimentation with the cubist style. St. Omer also served as editor of the leading newspaper, The Voice of Saint Lucia, from 1959 to 1962.

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