Warm Welcome for Patterson’s “Political Journey” in New York

Hundreds of guests braved the bitterly cold weather in New York City on Friday, March 1, 2019, to share in the launch of “My Political Journey”, the memoirs of Jamaica’s sixth Prime Minister, the Most Hon. P.J. Patterson.

The event, in association with the CUNY Graduate Center in Manhattan was a celebration of Jamaicans, representatives of other Caribbean islands and their U.S. colleagues, of the book described as “an epic narrative” by the University of the West Indies Vice Chancellor, Prof. Sir Hilary Beckles.

Sir Hilary in launching the book said Patterson’s “My Political Journey paints a narrative of the enormity of Caribbean civilization. Few countries have had greater global impact than Jamaica – P.J. Patterson, Marcus Mosiah Garvey, Usain Bolt, Shelly-Ann Fraser-Pryce. This is Epic History – an Epic Narrative. You are the pride of Jamaica”, he declared.

Dr. Elizabeth Nunes, Professor at Hunter College was equally complimentary situating P.J. Patterson’s work among celebrated writers like Nobel Peace Prize winner, Derek Walcott and others.

Julia Wrigley, Interim Provost, CUNY Graduate Center spoke of the deep association and collaboration between the University and Caribbean people and welcomed guests warmly to the Center.

Representing lead sponsor New Fortress Energy, Verona Carter, Vice President Public Affairs, called the book “a collector’s item to be treasured and handed down from generation to generation, for information education and a source of inspiration to us all.”

Ms. Carter said, “for us at New Fortress Energy, we are proud of the transformational role that we are playing in helping to shape Jamaica’s socio economic future with the introduction of liquefied natural gas – thanks to the vision of our CEO and Founder, Wes Edens. We’re therefore delighted to be here this evening to celebrate a book that aptly chronicles another very important period in Jamaica’s overall growth and transformation.”

Dr. Luz Longsworth, Pro Vice Chancellor and Principal UWI Open Campus and Chair UWI Press – publishers of the book noted “this book has brought us to near commercial levels which is very unusual for a small university press. Thank you for putting your faith in us Mr. Patterson.”

A highlight of the book launch was an on-stage “interview” in which Jamaican-born actress Sheryl Lee Ralph “grilled” Mr. Patterson on the circumstance of his birth, his upbringing and the vision and mission of the book.

He delighted his audience with snippets of his “journey” and later autographed copies at a Caribbean-style reception complete with steeplpan music by Mustafa Alexander.

Other sponsors of the book launch in New York City included GK Money Services, Western Union, RIU Hotels, Caribbean Airlines and Golden Krust Bakery. The third stop on a tour which has already included Kingston and Montego Bay it was blessed by Rev. Dr. Samuel Vassel, District Superintendent Metro New York District, Church of the Nazarine.

The publication of the book was sponsored by Heis Consults and the Chase Fund and Mr. Patterson has committed the total proceeds of sales to The UWI to assist in the payment of tuition fees for needy students and the interchange of students to and from the Mona campus to other campuses for specified periods, thus promoting regional integration.

Caption: The Most Hon. P.J. Patterson, Jamaica’s sixth Prime Minister reads from his memoirs “My Political Journey” as requested by Actress Sheryl Lee Ralph (right) at the book launch at the CUNY Graduate Center, New York on March 1, 2019

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