St Ann educators Rupert Brown and Rose Gowie-McLean were honoured by the St Ann Chamber of Commerce at their annual 61st awards banquet at the Moon Palace Jamaica Grande.
Brown received the Citizen Award, while Gowie-McLean got the Education Award.
Other awardees included C&WJ Cooperative Credit Union, which got the Corporate Award; Ramesh ‘Jim’ Lakhwani, President’s Award; and Kevin White of Nando Investment, operators of Spring Garden Seafood and Steak House and Ocho Rios Jerk Centre walked away with the Tourism Award.
Brown, who is also returning officer for North East St Ann, started in the classroom in 1969 and moved through the ranks from classroom teacher to education officer, principal and lecturer at HEART Trust/NTA.
Brown holds a Master of Science degree in education, a Bachelor of Science degree in education, diploma in physical education and health studies, and a teachers’ certificate.
He was chosen for the Citizen Award because of the contribution he has made to community over the years.
Brown, also a farmer, has served as president of the Jamaica Agricultural Society, Orange Hill Branch, Jamaica Teachers’ Association (JTA) Sports Secretary for St Ann, president of the St Ann chapter, JTA; deacon at Brown’s Town Tabernacle Church, board chairman of Muirhouse Primary and Junior High School and Brown’s Town Preparatory School, and board member, Brown’s Town Primary School, among other activities.
Prior to this award, Brown had received numerous awards, including the University of the West Indies Award and the St Ann Parish Council Award, both for outstanding community service.
“The St Ann Chamber of Commerce salutes this embodiment of unparalleled tenacity, Mr Rupert Brown, for his significant contribution to education, farming and the community and the Parish of St Ann and, by extension, Jamaica,” the citation read in part.
Gowie-McLean spent 35 years at Breadnut Hill Primary School before retiring in 2015.
She attended Shortwood Teachers’ College, Moneague College, International University College, Mount Saint Vincent University and the National College of Educational Leadership.
Gowie-McLean taught at grades one, three, five and six before becoming principal at Breadnut Hill.
She is credited with undertaking several projects at the school while in leadership, including the expansion of the breakfast programme, renovation of the staff room, construction of the library and computer room, securing computers for the school, construction of the guidance counsellor’s office, and construction and upgrading of the school’s student bathrooms.
Her community involvement embraces board membership of the Colegate Early Childhood Institution, President of the St Ann Baptist Women’s Federation and member of the Colegate Neighbourhood Watch.
Among the many awards previously received by Gowie-McLean is the Golden Torch Award from the JTA for her 35 years service to education.
“The St Ann Chamber salutes Mrs Rose M. Gowie-McLean for her significant and outstanding contribution to education in the parish of St Ann and Jamaica and prays that she will be blessed with good health and fortitude as he serves her beloved parish and country,” the citation read.