The Jamaican Women of Florida, Inc. (JWOF) will again host the third annual Women’s Empowerment Conference & Scholarship Luncheon to celebrate its fourth anniversary on Saturday, April 8, 2017. The event will take place at the Jungle Island, 1111 Parrot Jungle Trail, in downtown Miami.
Some 200 patrons are expected to participate in the daylong event which will include three panel presentations and the Scholarship Awards Luncheon. The sessions will include groups of professionals who are renowned first and second generation women of Jamaican descent who will share their experiences and insights into their professional and personal development. The morning session Smashing the Glass Ceiling will include Commander Janice Smith - US Navy Commander; Dr. Janice Cover – Former Assistant School Superintendent of Palm Beach County; and Captain Maria Ziadie Haddad who was the first female pilot at former Jamaican national airline, Air Jamaica.
A panel on Transformation follows with Imani Duncan-Price, Transformation business and political leader from Kingston, Jamaica; Julie Mansfield, author and South Florida businesswoman who overcame abuse; and Nailah Wagner, career leadership and executive coach from Washington, D.C. Mentoring will the close the day’s activities with a panel of next generation professionals include Dr. Fidel Goldson, Jr., CEO, Florida based Goldson Spine Rehabilitation Center; Devona Reynolds-Perez, South Florida attorney and President of Caribbean Bar Association; and Jamaican based medical practitioner, Dr. Sanneta Myrie and former Miss Jamaica World (2015).
Guest speaker at the Scholarship Awards Luncheon is Jamaica’s Political Ombudsman, the Hon. Donna Parchment-Brown, Esq. The attorney at law and former head of the nation’s Dispute Resolution Foundation is expected to share with her audience her commitment to her position of fostering a healthy political climate in her homeland; and will also draw from her experiences and successes professionally in a work environment once dominated by male counterparts.
This event is now considered a staple among those on the South Florida community calendar because of the varying interests patrons share throughout the day. Known for their signature shopping gallery, JWOF events showcase a line-up of retailers displaying a variety of items - clothing, jewelry, hand-crafted leather sandals, accessories and Jamaican art and craft. You can expect to see them at this event as you prepare to shop for things Jamaican.
The four-year old Not-for-profit organization was launched in April 2013, and continues to grow from its original 20 founding members as they strengthen their mission to provide an outlet for Jamaican women in Florida to empower themselves through charitable and educational endeavors, personal development and mentoring activities.
Through their ongoing commitment to engage and assist in the development of leadership and personal skills of Jamaican women in Florida, the JWOF members continue to give back to the next generation of young women through several programs including their annual renewable “Powerful Women…Next Generation Scholarship” program. This scholarship helps a college-bound Jamaican-American female student chart her career through college and sustained for a four-year degree. So far, three students are already benefitting as they are now enrolled at universities nationwide. First recipient, Jaime Noicely is in her final year at Florida Atlantic University pursuing studies in Philosophy and Criminal Justice getting ready for graduation in December later this year. Adrianna Jones is currently enrolled at University of Florida as Biology major while the third recipient, Rachael Wildman is completing her first year at University of South Florida in Bio-Medical Sciences. Under the guidance of JWOF members, these young women are mentored by the members in leadership and personal skills as they prepare to operate in a global environment.
The JWOF members have also participated in the adoption of young female residents at Melody House Girls’ Home in Montego Bay, Jamaica. The team makes yearly visits to the Home where they share in leadership and mentoring activities preparing the young residents to be empowered as they become adults. The organization of vibrant professional women has made several strides through fundraisers, networking sessions and collaborative efforts. “We have been able to achieve these milestones because of the support of our members and the support from our community” said the newly elected president, Camille Edwards, Administrator with the Broward County School Board. Rounding out the new Board are newly elected Vice President, Mrs. June Minto, marketing consultant and managing partner with Jamaican Jerk Festival & Jamaque– Paridis Magazines; Secretary Tamara Wadley; Treasurer Dale Telfer, CPA; Director-at-large Ann Marie Clarke, Esq. and Legal Director Hilary Creary, Esq.
This year’s Conference is being staged in collaboration with the Jamaica Tourist Board and sponsored by Victoria Mutual Building Society; Florida Perinatal Center; Grace Kennedy; Law Offices of Dahlia A. Walker; Weiss Serrota; Robinson Law & Mediation, Eurocar, Dr. Fern Tai Sen Choi-Bent; and Zap Courier, among other supporters.
Sponsorship and vendor opportunities are still available to interested persons. Information on details of the Conference is available at www.jamaicanwomenofflorida.com and www.facebook.com/jwoflorida or by calling 561-320-1391. Tickets for the event are available at Eventbrite. https://www.eventbrite.com/e/jamaican-women-of-florida-womens-empowerment-conference-scholarship-luncheon-tickets-30811619383