Award-Winning Journalist Brenda Blackmon To Receive CTO’s First-Ever Distinguished Friend Of The Caribbean Award


The Caribbean Tourism Organization (CTO) will present its first ever “Distinguished Friend of the Caribbean” award to Brenda Blackmon, current anchor at WPIX11 in New York, for her passion for the Caribbean as well as her untiring dedication in supporting CTO with numerous key events.

Always ready to assist, Blackmon has played an integral role in the State of the Tourism Industry Conference (SOTIC) in Barbados, the Conference on Sustainable Tourism Development, important keynote speaker at countless functions on the Caribbean and host of the elegant CTO Governments of the Caribbean State Ball on multiple occasions.

Blackmon will be honoured during the Caribbean Tourism Industry Awards gala which recognises excellence in promoting the Caribbean and honours individuals whose outstanding, passionate and dedicated work has contributed to the development and success of the region. The esteemed awards dinner takes place on Thursday, 6 June from 7 – 10 p.m. at the Wyndham New Yorker (481 Eighth Avenue) during Caribbean Week New York (#CWNY2019), when the Big Apple is captivated with Caribbean flair, pulsating energy and colourful sounds.

“I just want to be a friend you can continue to count on. One Caribbean – the places of my fondest memories,” said Blackmon. “I am so grateful for being presented with the ‘Distinguished Friend of the Caribbean’ award by the CTO.”

Blackmon, a five-time Emmy award-winning journalist, has been nominated for 16 additional Emmys and more than a dozen Associated Press awards. She was a longtime anchor for New York City’s WWOR-9 and is the recipient of two Edward R. Murrow awards for broadcast excellence. Founder of the Kelly Fund for Lupus, Inc, she authored two books that help raise funds and educate about lupus and serves on the national board of directors of Lupus Research Alliance. A staunch supporter of education, she is an adjunct professor at Fairleigh Dickinson University and serves on the board of directors.

“I am pleased that the Caribbean Tourism Organization has chosen to recognise Brenda for her devotion and affection toward the region,” said Sylma Brown, Director, CTO-USA. “Whenever CTO needs a helping hand, Brenda readily and quickly commits her time and talent. She truly embodies the spirit of the Caribbean.”

In addition to the “Distinguished Friend of the Caribbean” award, CTO will present the Caribbean Travel Media Awards, the CTO Allied awards comprising of the “Jerry,” the Allied and a Special Recognition Award, the Distinguished Caribbean Citizen award, among others, as well as the Jamaica-sponsored Marcia Vickery-Wallace and Marcella Martinez memorial awards.

Tickets for the dinner can be purchased online only via

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