Jamaican Dwight Smith to receive Forerunner Award

Jamaican-born entrepreneur, Dwight Thanos Smith.
Jamaican-born entrepreneur, Dwight Thanos Smith.
Photo courtesy ICS

Dwight Thanos Smith, a Jamaican-born entrepreneur, has been selected to be honored with the Forerunner Award at the 29th Annual Caribbean American Heritage (CARAH) Awards on Friday.
The CARAH Awards is presented by the Washington, D.C.-based Institute of Caribbean Studies (ICS), the leading Caribbean-American advocacy organization responsible for securing Presidential Proclamation of June as National Caribbean American Heritage Month.
ICS said the prestigious honors recognize the contributions and accomplishments of Caribbean leaders in various fields, “while celebrating Caribbean pride and the great promise of Caribbean immigrants to America and the world.”
Smith, an alumnus of Trinity International University and Purdue University, is a nationally recognized entrepreneur, holding multiple patents and patents pending while successfully launching multiple high-tech ventures from consumer-packaged goods, oil and gas chemicals, software development to mobility devices, ICS said.
It said Smith was born at Up Park Camp, headquarters of the Jamaica Defense Force (JDF), in Jamaica and migrated to the United States when he was an adolescent. He is a US citizen and resides in Texas.
ICS said Smith’s most recent venture, Paragon VTOL, of which he is chief visionary officer and lead inventor, is focused on drone aircraft with vertical take-off and landing capabilities for human transport.
Paragon VTOL is currently transitioning from smaller proof of concept models to working prototypes.
Smith is also founder and chief architect for the Green Tech Energy Company (GTEC), Clearport Worldwide, BTS Infralink and the NV Motor Group — which were all created to develop the necessary infrastructure for VTOL integration.
As part of this transition, ICS said Smith has successfully developed several partnerships, including a manufacturing relationship with the City of Brownsville, Texas, research initiative with Virginia Union University (HBCU). a historically black college and university (HBCU), led by Dr. Hakim Lucas, to create Paragon Universe Research and Technology Innovation Center, “which will create sustainable jobs within the Paragon universe and beyond.”
Smith plans to extend the HBCU collaboration to The University of the West Indies.
“He has pioneered technologies with global reach in the areas of disposal beverage carriers for fast food restaurants; divergent chemicals to increase oil well performance; take-off and landing technology, including drones, low-speed electric cars, microgrid electricity for clean energy, and soon to come, flying cars to be used as taxis,” ICS said.
Smith said he is “determined to overcome bureaucratic barriers to giving back” to his country.
He became “the wind beneath Mike Henry’s wings when he campaigned for the construction of an elusive international airport in Vernamfield, Clarendon,” ICS said.
The 29th staging of the CARAH Awards will return to its in-person format this year at the JW Marriott in Washington, D.C.
In 2020 and 2021, the CARAH Awards were held virtually, as the world grappled with the novel coronavirus.

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