Over three dozen distinguished honorees were feted Thursday night as Caribbean Life hosted its annual Caribbean Impact Awards presented by Elliot Ifraimoff & Associates P.C, Injury Attorneys.
38 honorees strutted their stuff, on the red carpet, before over 570 effervescent patrons, to pulsating Caribbean music before receiving their prestigious award in Queens, NY.
The annual Impact Awards recognizes the achievements and contributions of outstanding individuals born in the Caribbean or of Caribbean background who have created the most impact in their respective career fields — from healthcare, the arts, to advocacy, entrepreneurship, and much more.
It is with support of our sponsors that Caribbean Life is able to host the prestigious gala.
This year’s Caribbean Impact Awards was Presented by Elliot Ifraimoff & Associates P.C., Injury Attorneys
The gala was also sponsored by TD Bank; Spectrum, JP Morgan Chase & Co; MetroPlus Health; CFJ Law PLLC; Emblem Health; Ponce Bank; St. John’s Episcopal Health; Emu Health; AT&T; Unique People Services; and Ms. Jessie’s.
“The celebrated honorees are committed to creating and framing the path for incoming immigrants and inspiring generations to come,” said Caribbean Life in a statement.
“We are pleased to acknowledge the many extraordinary achievements of the Caribbean Americans we are honoring tonight, who continue to make a significant impact on life in the United States and particularly New York,” said Victoria Schneps-Yunis, CEO and publisher of Schneps Media, the parent company of Caribbean Life.
“These hard-working and dedicated individuals have been so successful because they have a passion for what they do,” she added. “They have positioned themselves as major players, who have positively influenced our city every day. It is my privilege to honor them tonight.”
Amanda Tarley, director of Equity, Diversity and Inclusion Events and Programs at Schneps Media, who coordinated the event, said it was “an honor to be sharing a room with everyone here tonight.
“Caribbean Life has been a staple and a local source for news, politics, entertainment and more for Caribbean Americans in New York City for over three decades,” she said. “Every year, we look forward to bringing this event to you.”
Tarley congratulated the 2023 honorees, thanking them for their “endless efforts” and asking patrons to applaud both current and past honorees.
“It’s exciting to see many familiar faces and the level of support we have for one another in the room tonight,” she said.
Guyanese-American Melissa Noel, the founder of Mel&N Media Group and news and politics editor for Essence magazine, was the emcee for the evening.
“Caribbean Life, am New York Metro and Schneps Media are thrilled to celebrate Caribbean-American heritage, she said. “We are delighted to once again award and shine a spotlight on those who have made New York and the world a better place through their efforts and passion.
“We have some inspirational honorees to recognize tonight, who represent almost every island in the Caribbean,” she added, stating: “Tonight’s awards hold a special place in my heart.”
“We share the room with talented individuals, some of the best in their industry and even the world – ranging from all sectors – religious, media, banking, healthcare, the arts and more,” Noel said. “We are proud of our Caribbean heritage, and this event is important to continue to highlight and promote the contributions that we have made and will continue to make.”
In introducing Ifraimoff, Steve Williams said he knew “what it is to work hard every day,” adding that “these are values that I share, and I know Elliot Ifraimoff & Associates, PC have those values.”
Before personally presenting the awards, Ifraimoff said he came to the United States as a refugee with his parents, when he was 16, and that achieving the American Dream required “lots and lots of work.”
“It is up to us to make sure every individual in this country realize the American Dream,” he said, thanking his team and stating that “much wouldn’t be possible without you.”
Special Awards were given to: Trinidadian Noel D. Blackburn – Lifetime Achievement Award – sponsored by Elliot Ifraimoff & Associates PC, Injury Attorney; Christopher Roberts, The Door Restaurant – TD Bank Outstanding Entrepreneur Award – sponsored by TD Bank; and Trinidadian Marsha Sinanan-Vasishta – Humanitarian Award.
The other honorees were: Ann Marie Adamson-Serieux, Emblem Health; Sherry Algredo, Queens Community Board 9; Anthony Beckford, Royalty Consulting, SoSincere Entertainment, Rated X Energy Drink; Yvette Brissett-André, Unique People Services; Ty’East Alleyne-Bobb, Brooklyn Adult Learning Center/Central Brooklyn LC/Healing Hearts Chaplaincy/Typostrophe 360′ LLC; Mohamed Q. Amin, Caribbean Equality Project; Charmaine Bourbon, Grant Associates; Sonia Ava Marie Daly, IDNYC; Keisha Daniels, MetroPlusHealth; Angella Davidson, Neighborhood Housing Services of Brooklyn (NHS Brooklyn); Dr. Thierry Duchatellier, Foundation for Hope and Health in Haiti (FHHH); Carl Forbes Jr., CFJ Law PLLC | Metropolitan Black Bar Association; Quamid Francis, City Year New York; Princess François Estévez, America Needs You; Cindyann Gaskin-Best, Health + Hospitals/Kings County; and Michelle A. Gibbs, West Indian American Day Carnival Association (WIADCA).
Other honorees were: Roslyn Gordon, RN, MSN, Health + Hospitals/Kings County; Nancy Hagans, RN, BSN, CCRN, New York State Nurses Association; Michelle Henry, JPMorgan Chase; April Ann James, Health + Hospitals/McKinney; Jonelle Johnson, Spectrum; Donna Joseph, Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority Incorporated, Eta Omega Omega Chapter; George Onuorah, Emu Health; Magdalonie Paris-Campbell, AT&T; Marjorie Parker, JobsFirstNYC; Jordana Persad, Don’t Pass The Peppa Sauce; Renee Rhodd, Queensborough Community College; Apostle Cecil G. Riley, Freedom Hall Church of God, Inc.; Sarana Purcell, 43rd NYS Assembly District;; Dr. Kerri Ann Smith, Queensborough Community College; Barbara Stewart, St. John’s Episcopal Health; Karmisha Superville, EBK Consulting Service; Jagdeo Tiwari, Ponce Bank; Andre White, Phipps Neighborhoods; Lamona Worrell, New York City Office of the Mayor.
Caribbean Life’s senior writer Dr. Nelson A. King, who has been writing for the paper shortly after its formation almost 33 years ago and who is a Certified United Methodist Church Lay Speaker, offered the opening prayer.
Angela Cooper, a native of Tobago, Trinidad’s sister isle, sang the US National Anthem, to wide acclaim; and her compatriot, Gerard Placide, a three-time McDonald Gospel Fest winner, performed a medley of “Hallelujah”, “I Am a Warrior” and “Lift Jesus Higher”.
Every year, Caribbean Life, through the Impact Awards gala, raises funds for a local not-for-profit organization. This year, the paper is fundraising for the Society for the Advancement of the Caribbean Diaspora (SACD).
100 percent of the raffle proceeds Thursday night will be donated to SADC.
If you would like to learn more about participating in the Caribbean Impact Awards next year, please see Amanda Tarley (718 249 9640 [email protected]).