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Cameron, Jackson receive congressional awards in NY

Published:Tuesday | April 17, 2012 | 12:00 AM
Team Jamaica Bickle honouree Olympian Grace Jackson (right) displays her award as she stands beside Devon Harris, Jamaica's 1988 Winter Olympics bobsled team captain. - contributed photos
Team Jamaica Bickle CEO Irwine Clare (left) presents honouree Olympian Bertland Cameron with his awards.
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NEW YORK, United States (CMM Inc):

Two of Jamaica's most prolific Olympians, Grace Jackson and Bertland Cameron, were both presented with proclamations from the office of Yvette D. Clarke, 11th Congressional District, New York; and ranking member of the Homeland Security Committee and member Small Business Committee, in the United States Congress in honour of their outstanding contributions to sports, both on and off the track.

The proclamations were presented at the Team Jamaica Bickle (TJB) annual reception and awards ceremony last Thursday in New York.

The function was hosted by fellow Olympian and master of ceremonies for the evening, Devon Harris, who captained Jamaica's 1998 Winter Olympic bobsled team.

Other Olympians on hand were Alfred Daley, 400m specialist, who shared the stage with Lennox Miller, Donald Quarrie and later a younger Bertland Cameron, Andrea Lloyd and 4x4 and 400 metres hurdles silver medallist, Danny McFarlane.

The office of Leroy Comrie, councilman, 27thDistrict, Queens, presented the honourees with citations and official letters for their exemplary service.

Irie Jam Media (community service awardees) and Team Jamaica Bickle, for its work on behalf of the athletes, were also presented with citations.

Extremely grateful

"Both Bertland and myself are extremely grateful to be recognised by an entity (TJB) who like ourselves are working hard to make a difference in sports," said Jackson.

"To do something that you love and be honoured by your peers is an extraordinary feeling. Bert has expressed the wish that those who benefit from TJB's efforts should get a chance to experience (as we just did) all the work that goes into making everything possible; kudos to the hard-working team of volunteers of TJB," she added.

Natalie Neita-Headley, minister without portfolio in the Office of the Prime Minister with responsibility for sports, delivered a specially recorded message to the honourees on behalf of the government and people of Jamaica, in which she spoke of her " ... delight in joining Team Jamaica Bickle and the diaspora in celebrating Jamaica's best assets; her people ... against the backdrop of Jamaica's 50thanniversary of Independence".

A full house witnessed the occasion, with members of the community, stakeholders of the sports and entertainment industry and business community showing appreciation for the honourees.

Jamaica's deputy consul general to New York, Sharon Burrell Green, and Christopher Castriota, newly appointed community relations officer, as well as a contingent from the Jamaica Tourist Board, New York tri-state region - Kenton Senior, Ruth West, Marcia Sinclair and Anthony King - were also in attendance.

Vincent HoSang and daughter Sabrina (TJB's partner and lifetime sponsor) of Caribbean Food Delights, spoke of their steadfast support for the TJB programme which supports Jamaica's athletes at Penn Relays yearly. Sponsors Western Union, LIME, UJAA and Tower Isle Patties all brought messages of support.

"We are overwhelmed by the outpouring of love and we thank the community wholeheartedly. It was indeed a special evening as we celebrate the nation's 50th anniversary of Independence," said TJB's CEO Irwine Clare.