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JAMAICAN DIASPORA NEWS: December 27th – January 2nd, 2015

JAMAICAN SENTENCED FOR PASSPORT FRAUD—12/27/14
Wayne Christopher Morgan of Jamaica will spend eight months in jail for fraudulently obtaining a United States passport. He will also receive three years of supervised release and an assessment of US$100. Morgan was arrested by federal authorities in Philadelphia International Airport in June 2014 after it was discovered that he made false statements and had assumed the identity of a man in Florida when he obtained the passport he was carrying.

MISS JAMAICA UK EAGER TO TRAVEL TO HOME ISLAND—12/28/14
Rianna Simmons-Brown, 22, is the new Miss Jamaica UK, and she says she can’t wait to visit “her island.” She has not been in Jamaica since she was a child. Her father is from St. Mary, but she was raised in east London. She is committed to motivating young women to go after their dreams and wants young people to know that they can achieve their goals if they try hard enough.

BRIGHT SPOT AWARD GIVEN TO JAMAICAN COLLEGE—12/29/14
The Bright Sport Award in Innovations in Leadership Development was given to the National College for Educational Leadership (NCEL) in Jamaica by Canada’s Department of Foreign Affairs, Trade, and Development. The Jamaican institution received the award via the Caribbean Leadership Project for the success achieved in its Principals’ Training Program (EPTP). The program is used to build capacity among Jamaican school leaders.

MUSIC PIONEER VIEWS MAINE AS LOCATION FOR NEXT CAREER PHASE—12/30/14
Jamaican musician Glen DaCosta, 72, was instrumental in popularizing the island’s music worldwide during the 1960s and 1970s, and now he is looking to the state of Maine in the United States as what he calls a “platform” for the next phase of his career. He gave a concert at Greenlight Studio in Portland for a number of children and their caregivers, and while the location may seem unlikely for someone like DaCosta, but his friendship with a musician there has inspired him to make the state a base for his future in music.

HISTORY MADE BY TEEN MODEL FROM JAMAICA—12/31/14
Tami Williams, 16, has been chosen as the December cover girl for the French magazine Elle. She is the first model from the Jamaica and the Caribbean to make the cover, and she is the youngest black model to be selected for the publication’s front page. Williams succeeded in getting the cover just nine months after first entering the international modeling sector. The French Elle cover was photographed in Paris and represents a “watershed moment in global fashion” for the company Saint International and Jamaica, said Deiwight Peters, company founder.

CONSTANCE HAMILTON AWARD GIVEN TO JAMAICAN DOCTOR—01/01/15
Dr. Rosemary Moodie, a Jamaica-born pediatrician, has been honored with the 2014 Constance Hamilton Award in Canada. The award was established in 1979 by the City Council in Toronto in honor of its first woman member, who was elected in 1920. The award marks the 1929 decision by the Privy Council requiring the federal government to recognize women as “persons.” Moodie is president and board chair of the Young Women’s Christian Association (YWCA) and has worked extensively to improve conditions for young women with mental health and addiction challenges. She also helps low-income single women and women who are getting away from domestic violence.

FORMER MAYOR, SUPPORTER OF JAMAICA BOBSLED TEAM, DIES—01/01/15
George Fitch, a former mayor of Virginia in the United States and one of the individuals instrumental in the formation of the Jamaican bobsled team has died of cancer. Fitch was the mayor of Warrenton, Virginia, for 16 years. He had been living in Jamaica when he realized that the top sprinters in the country would be perfect for the sport of bobsledding while watching a pushcart derby.

FAMILY SPENDS CHRISTMAS WITHOUT MAN MURDERED IN JAMAICA—01/02/15
The Murrain family from Birmingham in the United Kingdom is spending their first Christmas without the member of the family, a businessman, who was murdered in Jamaica in June 2014. The family does have hope that the person or persons responsible for the killing will be apprehended due to new discussions occurring between Jamaica’s police and Jamaica’s High Commissioner to the UK Aloun Ndombet-Assamba.The High Commissioner, the family, and a senior police official in Jamaica, conferred via telephone, and the police official confirmed the ongoing nature of the investigation into the incident.

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Written by Staff Writer