Wed | Nov 29, 2023

Toronto marks Bob Marley’s 77th birthday

Eight community leaders to receive Bob Marley Day Humanitarian Awards

Published:Saturday | February 5, 2022 | 12:08 AM


Toronto City Council has proclaimed February 6 Bob Marley Day.

“This marks the 31st year in a row that the City of Toronto has officially declared February 6 Bob Marley Day (which began with former Toronto mayor, Art Eggleton),” explained long-time Bob Marley Day committee member, Courtney Betty.” Bob Marley would have been 77 this Sunday.

“Bob Marley said ‘One Love’. So each year, we take time to honour the best of the best, people - acting in the diverser spirit of Bob Marley’s One Love, - who have worked hard to make our country a better place for all. As the diverse population continues its tremendous growth, it becomes even more critical that the doors of opportunities are open to all. “

In previous years, there have been public events held to mark the reggae star’s birthday. This year, it will be recorded at A Different Booklist Cultural Centre - The People’s Residence and broadcast on YouTube at 3:00 p.m.

The schedule includes the reading of a proclamation issued by mayor John Tory and recognition of this year’s recipients of the Bob Marley Humanitarian Award. Bookstore owner and author Itah Sadu will read from her book, a children’s story about how a new Canadian youngster makes friends with his principal over their mutual love of Bob Marley. There will also be a presentation on the progress of developments in the Little Jamaica business district by Nadine Spencer of the Black Business and Professional Association.

This year’s award recipients are:

- Ian Allen (OBVC board member and director of strategic communications and initiatives, Ontario Treasury Board Secretariat)

- Steve Anderson (deputy mayor for the town of Shelburne and a regional councillor for the County of Dufferin)

- Deborah Cox (award-winning entertainer)

- Gervan Fearon (president of George Brown College)

- Tiffany Ford (entrepreneur, former school board trustee and community advocate)

- Siphesihle November (principal dancer, National Ballet of Canada)

- Valarie Steele (community activist)

- Senator Wanda Thomas Bernard (Canadian senator from Nova Scotia)

The award ceremony, sponsored by Roots Canada, airs on Bob Marley Day’s YouTube Channel on Sunday, February 6, at 3:00 pm.