For Les Brown, the man considered the world’s best motivational speaker, Marcus Garvey was the world’s first motivational speaker is truth be told – a fearless leader and Black consciousness advocate whose firm Jamaican roots made him a force to be reckoned with internationally. Garvey’s teachings empowered Brown as a young man, and now he wants to pay it forward by giving empowerment talks to Jamaicans trying to find their place in the world.
“I want to come back to Jamaica with the Les Brown Youth Institute to do a youth training event. I want to give them hope and share methods to carve out a future for themselves and how to reinvent themselves in this new global economy that we are in,” Brown said, as he addressed the scores of Jamaicans who attended his inspiring talk at the Jamaica Conference Centre recently. “We have to teach our young people methods and techniques for survival and how to see opportunities beyond entertainment. Let them know they can become architects and engineers. It’s our responsibility to create a community that fosters greatness.”
On his return, Brown is bringing some of his children with him, including Leslie Jr. and Serena. “I have five boys and five girls. When the Lord said, Be fruitful and multiply, I took him seriously,” he quipped. “So we’re gonna come back to Jamaica to do this important youth training work.” Brown says he also wants “to visit some of the prisons to speak to some of the men.”
As new President of the Caribbean Broadcasting Union (CBU), Gary Allen’s role comes with a weighty mandate. Among the responsibilities he’s most eager to tackle include assessing how the union has been engaging its members and the wider public on critical policy issues like press freedom. “We have to ensure that the press freedom that we enjoy is not taken for granted. As a watchdog body, we will be putting out annual press freedom reports and keeping a close watch on the state of press freedom in the region, so that there’s no eroding,” Allen told TALLAWAH at the recent Devon House-hosted launch to kick off Restaurant Week 2017. The survival of traditional media has also zoomed into sharp focus. Says Allen, “AS we increasingly move forward with new technologies, we have to ensure that traditional media doesn’t get swamped by digital media.”
> Sound byte!
“Jamaica has two main issues: a mindset and a skill-set problem, which of left unattended could signal the death of Jamaica’s development goal of being a strong logistics hub. That’s our problem. But its mainly the mindset that is troubling because this affects our leaders and, as the word says, a nation without vision perishes.” – Fritz Pinnock, President of the Caribbean Maritime University (CMU)