Thu | Dec 12, 2019

Rita to be given lifetime award

Published:Tuesday | November 9, 2010 | 12:00 AM
Rita Marley - File

Rita Marley, commonly referred to as a reggae matriarch, is to be honoured at the 17th Annual Caribbean American Heritage Awards Gala hosted by the Institute of Caribbean Studies (ICS).

Marley will travel to the JW Marriott in Washington DC on Friday, where she will receive the Marcus Garvey Lifetime Achievement Award. The award is to be given during a gala dinner at the hotel.

While Marley is most widely known for being the widow of Bob Marley, she is, in truth, an artiste in her own right, with an extensive career in advocacy.

"Nana Rita was a perfect recipient for our Marcus Garvey award. This award recognises those who unselfishly advocate to empower and to uplift the people of the Caribbean and Africa," said ICS president and founder, Dr Claire Nelson.

"Throughout her life, through her music and her numerous actions, Nana Rita (A name Marley acquired in Ghana) has demonstrated an unconditional will to help youth, lift the image of Africa on the global stage and assist Jamaican people. We are honoured that she has accepted this award."

Human empowerment

Each year, the Marcus Garvey Lifetime Achievement Award is presented by ICS to someone the organisation considers to have demonstrated a commitment to the principles of human empowerment and unity of people of African descent.

Reggae artiste Jimmy Cliff, Slinger Francisco, also known as 'The Mighty Sparrow', and Frederick 'Toots' Hibbert of Toots and the Maytals, have previously received the award.

Marley is the executive director and founder of the Bob Marley Foundation and the Rita Marley Foundation. She transformed the Bob Marley house into the Bob Marley Museum, and manages the Tuff Gong International recording company.

As an artiste, Marley is best known for the part she played as a member of the I Threes.

Marley has also assisted more than 200 African children and has adopted 35 children in Ethiopia.

The Caribbean American Heritage Awards Gala will be co-hosted by Maureen Bunyan, anchor of WJLA TV, and John Blake, host of Caribbean Experience on WHUR FM 96.3.