The American Friends of Jamaica, Inc. (AFJ), in collaboration with the Jamaica Committee, will host a joint fund raising gala, the 2013 Jamaica Charity Ball, in Miami on Saturday, April 13, 2013 at the elegant Four Seasons Hotel at 1435 Brickell Avenue, Miami. The gala will honor Ms.Thalia Lyn, CEO and Managing Director of Island Grill, recognizing Ms. Lyn’s outstanding achievements and unwavering philanthropic support for Jamaica, and Mr. Glen Mills, dedicated Coach of the Racers Track Club. Ms. Lyn will receive the International Humanitarian Award and Coach Mills will be presented with the International Achievement Award.
Thalia Lyn developed the Island Grill concept and remains the “face” and driving force behind this successful Jamaican chain of 16 restaurants. She initially formulated the Company’s recipes, operational techniques and systems in 1991, and has continually updated and refined the concept. The standards Island Grill established and maintains are a credit to Ms. Lyn’s leadership and business acumen. In addition to the commercial success she has achieved, she has always remembered to give back, serving on the Boards of numerous Jamaican companies, including the National Commercial Bank, as Trustee of the NCB Pension Funds, Jamaica Macaroni Factory, the Consular Corps of Jamaica and Mustard Seed Communities, among others. She was a past Chair of the Jamaica British Business Association, is Chairperson of the NCB Foundation, Committee Member of the PSOJ YUTE Program and the Fund-raising Committee of the Holy Trinity Cathedral. Her numerous awards include the FIU Business Woman of the Year in 2002 and 2007, Finalist in the Jamaica Observer Business Leader of the Year 1999 and Finalist in the Ernst & Young Caribbean Entrepreneur of the Year 2001.
Glen Mills is the coach and adviser to the male sprint athletes who won five of the six sprint medals in the 2012 London Olympic Games, including World Record holder and six time Olympic gold medalist Usain Bolt and the 100 metre World Champion Yohan Blake. He is currently head coach of the Racers Track Club, prior to which Mills was Head Coach of the Jamaican Olympic Athletics team. He has a long and successful history of coaching young athletes. In the early 1970s, Glen Mills trained a significant number of male sprinters in the national junior team. The Jamaica Amateur Athletic Association (JAAA) called on him to train the young sprinters for the CARIFTA games and his prominence as a coach continued to grow. In his 22 years as Jamaica’s Olympic athletics coach he oversaw athletes to 71 world championship titles and 33 Olympic medals. In 2009, Coach Mills stepped down from the Jamaican Olympic team to make room for other up and coming coaches and to focus his efforts on the Racers Track Club. His role in the branding of Jamaica as the world’s sprint factory is unparalleled.
About the AFJ
Founded in 1982, the American Friends of Jamaica is a charitable 501(c)(3) organization built on the principles of service and philanthropy; and is established to render assistance in the areas of Education, Healthcare, and Economic Development. The AFJ works with a broad coalition of Jamaican organizations and stakeholders to bring about change in the lives of Jamaicans in need. Amongst other initiatives, our partners assist us to provide shelter to the homeless, education to inner-city youth and healthcare to those in need. The AFJ Grant Cycle begins at the end of each year and grants are disbursed at the end of the first quarter of the following year. For more information and to attend the event: www.theafj.org
About The Jamaica Committee, Inc.
The Jamaica Committee, Inc. is a U.S. based 501(c)3 charitable organization formed by Jamaicans and lovers of Jamaica intent on helping the less advantaged in Jamaica while promoting the island. The Organization, formed in 2000, is run by 6 volunteer Directors. Its main fund-raising event, the Pineapple Ball for 12 years successfully lived out its promise to supporters to enjoy making good things happen. Funds generated from each Ball are distributed annually to support education, medical needs, programs against violence, encouragement for the arts and support for the needy on the island. Pineapple Ball 2001 received the Mayor's Award and a Mayoral Declaration of Pineapple Ball Day (Miami).
Between 2002 and 2009, the Ball was held at The Ritz Carlton Golf & Spa Resort, Rose Hall where in 2008, it was declared "event of the year" (Maco Magazine). In 2010, the decision was made to move the gala back to Miami where it began, in order to live out one of TJC'S formation objectives - that of showing the best of Jamaica in art, craft, music and food - and helping to promote that which is uniquely Jamaican.
The Jamaica Charity Ball is a collaboration between the American Friends of Jamaica and The Jamaica Committee, with both organizations combining their mission to identify and honor persons and organizations which have distinguished themselves in various fields and are selfless in their service to Jamaica and to have a grand, happy, splendid affair for the benefit of Jamaica.