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Ian Jackson was born in the island of Dominica and is a founder member of the Dominica Writer’s Guild registered in 1981. He has won eight National poetry competitions, the most by any writer in his country. ‘Jacko’ as he is affectionately called, is a 2013 recipient the of the Golden Drum award for Literature and song writing, the highest cultural award of his country.
He’s a teacher, a leading song writer, musician and free- lance columnist for the Sun Newspaper in Dominica. He won a Creative Writing Fellowship to the Florida State University in 1994 and holds an MBA from Leicester University with specialism in Marketing.
His lifelong dedication as an artist and the documentation of the same, has led him to this publication called: SPOTLIGHTING THE ARTS which he dedicates to his two children Kiwani and Janae and also to the readers of his weekly column – Spotlight.
Cassilda J. Thomas Brookes
Born in Anguilla in 1989, Mrs. Cassilda Thomas Brookes has always had a passion for reading and writing, particularly stories for children and poetry. She is a 2006 graduate of the Albena Lake Hodge Comprehensive School and currently holds the position of Library Assistant and facilitator of the Children Reading Program at the Anguilla Library Service. She is a first and second prize winner of the Anguilla Library Annual Malliouhana Poetry Competition and her work has appeared in the local newspaper “The Anguillan” and in the Anthology, “Where I See The Sun: Contemporary Poetry in Anguilla” under the pen name “Darkangel.”
She is also a member and has performed with the following organizations; The Sunshine Theatre Company, The Klassique Academy of Dance and Performing Arts, The Under Ground Poetry Group and the Anguilla Toastmasters Club which all play a major role in honing her craft. She is married and lives in Anguilla with her two children and husband, Mr. Awlton Brookes who illustrates all of her children stories. ‘Anansi and the Hurricane’ is her first children’s book.
Gloria Septra Augustus
Gloria Septra Augustus is presently is an attorney at Law who is currently employed as a Magistrate in Dominica. Miss Augustus is a 1987 graduate of the University of the West Indies with a Bachelor of Science Degree, the holder of a Master’s Degree from University College of North Wales ‘Bangor’ in Fisheries Biology and Management, a Law degree from the University of London and a Diploma in Legislative Drafting from the University of Guyana. Prior to becoming an Attorney- at- law in 2001, Miss Augustus worked as a Secondary School Teacher and a Senior Fisheries Officer of the Fisheries Development Division.
She is also a trained Mediator and has received certificate in Introduction to Counseling.
She has been involved in film and drama as Producer, Director and Writer. She also writes short stories,( what a life, Reality comes after a Fall, End of the Cycle, Piti Ke vini Gwan, Picking up the Pieces, Blood talking etc) poems and plays, ( Is so we stay, Make the Move, It only takes One, Talk on the Block) some for which she has been awarded prizes. Her only full length play ‘It Only Takes One….’ was adapted to a movie. She has also written and produced two teaching videos on sexual abuse against minors, short plays for television highlighting Climate Change issues and another on consequences of involvement in drugs by minors in a dysfunctional family. She has documented several of her other literary works. Miss Augustus has attended several training courses for the audio visual sector. Miss Augustus has recently completed the screenplay version of her short story “Pretending Reality’ which highlights the pain of a youngster wanting to confirm the identity of his father. The book “They Tell me to Tell you.” is her first collection of short stories.
Yvonne Sam was born in Guyana but currently resides in Montreal, Canada. She holds a Master’s Degree in Education from the Mc Gill University, a Bachelor of Science in Nursing from Athabasca University, a New York State Nursing Licensure from Pace University, and a Diploma in Education from the Concordia University.
She also holds the title of State Registered Nurse, State Certified Midwife and State Registered Mental Nurse from England, having trained and resided there for over thirteen years. She has worked as a Clinical Charge Nurse, a Nursing Examiner for the Order of Nurses of Quebec and a Secondary School teacher with the English Montreal School Board for over two decades
She is a newspaper columnist for the Montreal Community Contact, where she writes a column on family life, community, educational and social issues and for which she won the best column prize from the Quebec Community Newspaper Association in 2004. Yvonne Sam was the recipient of the 2014 Governor General of Canada Caring Citizen Award, and was among the 2014 Montreal Black History Month Laureates. Although now retired she continues writing on social and political issues in the Montreal Gazette, Huffington Post, Pride Magazine and the Montreal Community Contact. She is the author of one published book of poetry entitled Life’s Many Faces which won the Editor’s Choice Award from the U.S National Library of Poetry. Behind The Scenes in Nursing ( ISBN 978-976-95897-4-2) is her second book.
Alick Lazare is the author of Pharcel: Runaway Slave (a historical novel about the maroons of Dominica), Kalinago Blood (a fictional account of the genocide of the Kalinago tribe in the Eastern Caribbean), Nature Island Verses (a volume of poetry on the themes of Love, Life and Politics), and a collection of short stories – Carib and Other Stories.
One of his stories, Carib, was chosen for inclusion in Under the Perfume Tree, a collection of Caribbean stories published by The Macmillan Caribbean Writers Series. A poem, Little Bird, from his book, Nature Island Verses, has been selected for publication in an anthology to be released in 2015 by the Commonwealth Education Trust.
In his two novels, writing from the perspective of his subjects and telling their story as seen from their own eyes and with their own voice, he has been a revisionist of colonial history and has brought new understanding of the nature of his subjects and the narrative of their past.
Born in Dominica 17th. October 1934, Alick Lazare was a career civil servant, Financial Secretary and regional consultant in government finance; and, on retirement, spends his time on historical research and exploring Dominica’s literature.
Martha Nelson is a graduate of the University of the Virgin Islands where she obtained a Bachelor and an Associate Degree in Inclusive Early Childhood Education. She was born in village of St Joseph in the Commonwealth of Dominica. In her formative years she attended the St. Martin Vocational and the St. Joseph Government Schools, in Dominica before migrating to St Croix USVI.
Having qualified as a teacher she taught grades 1, 2, and 3 at the Amber School in St Croix and did home schooling and tutoring in her spare time. In the school year 2018-2019 the author taught at Excellent Academy at Estate La Reine. She is currently a retired teacher from the Department of Human Services Head Start program. It was While working with young children in the age range 2-5 years for about thirteen years, she saw the tremendous impact that poetry and songs could have on children in their early learning development. Martha Nelson is the mother of two grown children and is currently pursuing a Masters’ Degree in the Educational Leadership program at the University of the Virgin Islands. Having Fun with Poetry is her first published book.