Monday, 24 September 2012

THE 2012 POWER LIST: Jamaica’s 15 Most Profoundly Influential People Right Now

As part of TALLAWAH’s Special 2012 Power Issue, we’ve put together – in no particular order – a list of the 15 tastemakers, trendsetters and trailblazers, who are seriously shaping the cultural Zeitgeist in the Jamaican context with their clout, talent, or leadership by example. (Above: Simpson-Miller and Shaggy. Below, from left: Boyne, Jackson-Miller, Harris, and Mills.)

In the face of a worrying economy – and in the throes of the 50th anniversary of Jamaica’s Independence – the TIME honoree steadfastly continues to oversee her administration’s implementation of a range of policies and initiatives of national import, buoyed by a sense of dogged determination and a people-friendly approach to the top job.

SHAGGY: He Belongs To the World
Whether he’s pulling mammoth crowds on a global concert tour, assembling a supertalented dream team to record the Jamaica 50 theme song, or raising funds for the Bustamante Children’s Hospital, Orville Burrell is a man on a mission, possessed of generosity of spirit and steely resolve in substantial equal measure.

DAHLIA HARRIS: Mastering Any Given Part
Extraordinary would be an apt way to describe what Harris has been doing for Jamaican theatre: writing and performing and producing and directing while conveying fresh and hugely entertaining new works to the stage – all while nurturing emerging talent and opening doors for some of today’s fast-rising actors.

NOVIA McDONALD-WHYTE: Style with Purpose and Substance
From food to fashion, highlighting trends to heralding the new and the next, the Observer’s lifestyle maven is a one-woman force of nature, annually orchestrating such mega-successful ventures as Fashion’s Night Out and the 14-year-old Food Awards – both of which are now etched in the cultural psyche, transforming the way we shop and eat.

VEERLE POUPEYE: Art of the Matter
As executive director of the National Gallery of Jamaica, Dr. Poupeye’s is the supremely important job of running the landmark institution that houses and preserves invaluable artistic treasures from the oeuvre of such masters as Christopher Gonzalez, Mallica ‘Kapo’ Reynolds and Edna Manley.

CORDEL GREEN: Why Clean Airwaves Matter
Since 2001, Green has been a bee in the bonnet of many of today’s up-and-coming deejays and disc jocks – but with good reason. As executive director of the Broadcasting Commission, Green takes really seriously his job of keeping the nation’s airwaves family-friendly and appropriate for general audiences.

JEROME HAMILTON: Taking Talent to the Brink
With this shrewd business acumen and eye for quality, Hamilton has managed to position the 15-year-old Headline Entertainment as one of the pre-eminent entertainment consultancy, artiste booking, and event promotion firms in this region, handling affairs for such globally-recognized megastars as Sean Paul and Damian ‘Gongzilla’ Marley.

KINGSLEY COOPER: Design of the Times
As the epicentre of Caribbean fashion and a noteworthy feeder for the international model marketplace, Jamaica remains assured of a place in the world of style thanks to such stalwarts as Cooper, who annually pulls off the sensational spectacle that is CFW.

DIONNE JACKSON-MILLER: Reinventing the Art of Journalism
With her mix of fierce intellect and no-nonsense approach to covering the news for both radio and TV, Jackson-Miller has reignited excitement about forward-thinking journalism in this era of fast-evolving social media.

DR. CAROLYN COOPER: Wickedly Insightful
The renowned ‘dancehall professor’, newspaper columnist, and cultural commentator remains one of the most compelling and influential voices of our time, known for her razor-sharp wit and often controversial but never less than interesting point of view.

ANTHONY MILLER: The Tireless Crusader
He powers Friday night’s venerable Entertainment Report with a respect for the culture in all its guises (film, food, music) and an irreverence toward taking it too seriously.

IAN RANDLE: Wizard of Publishing
Transforming a once little-known press into a regional powerhouse, Randle (a 40-year veteran of the publishing world) and his creative team have managed to maintain a standard of excellence manifested in the vast range of publications, from creative nonfiction to poetry to academic literature, that bear the IRP stamp.

IAN BOYNE: How Jamaica Got With the Programme
As the host of such consistently interesting shows as Religious Hardtalk and Profile, not to mention his captivating Sunday Gleaner columns, the impassioned veteran journalist has become the Larry King of Jamaican media.

KIM-MARIE SPENCE: Taking Jamaican Film to a Higher Plane
As perfectly at ease as she is in the social world, Spence, a natural-born leader and past Rhodes scholar, admirably steers the ship at the Jamaica Film Commission, seeking out exciting new opportunities for local filmmaking talent.

GLEN MILLS: Playing In the Big Leagues
The president and head coach of the UWI Mona-based Racers Track Club, Coach Mills continues to oversee the conditioning and physico-mental development of a slew of Jamaica’s Olympic-calibre athletes, including the likes of Yohan Blake, Warren Weir, and Usain Bolt.

COMING ON STRONG: 5 Young Power Players In It to Win It

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  1. Hey, you have all left off, Greg Christie, who is doing a tireless and marvelous job as Contractor-General. Also, Ronald Jackson, at the Office of Disaster Preparedness. Vash