You are here

SPEAKERS

 

 

The Most Honourable Andrew Michael Holness O.N., M.P., Prime Minister

The Most Honourable Andrew Holness was born on the 22nd of July 1972 in Spanish Town St Catherine. Prime Minister Holness is a graduate of the St Catherine High School. He has a Master of Science in Development Studies and a Bachelor of Science in Management Studies from the University of the West Indies (Mona).   At the age of 43, Prime Minister Holness is Jamaica’s youngest Prime Minister to date, and the first who was born after Jamaica's Independence.

He was first elected as the Member of Parliament for West Central St. Andrew in 1997 at age 25.  Now in his fourth (4th) consecutive term as a MP, he became Jamaica's ninth Prime Minister having succeeded the Hon. Bruce Golding who resigned as Jamaica’s eighth Prime Minister in 2011. Prior to this, Prime Minister Holness was Minister of Education where he brought national attention to literacy and instituted several programmes to place Jamaica on the path to universal literacy at the primary level. Under his watch, Jamaica saw the introduction of the Career Advancement Programme (CAP) – a post-secondary technical and vocational training programme for unattached youth.

 A devout Seventh Day Adventist, Prime Minister Holness is married to Juliet, who is a first term Member of Parliament for East Rural St Andrew, a Chartered Accountant and Real Estate Developer.  They have two sons. When not performing his Prime Ministerial duties, the Most Hon. Andrew Holness enjoys chess, jogging, cycling and table tennis.

 


 Mike King ,  Global Manager for Public Safety , Esri (Environmental Systems Research Institute)

Mike King is a global public safety manager for Esri, (Environmental Systems Research Institute), a world leader of GIS software.  Before Esri, he spent a 28-year police career, retiring as Chief of Staff in the Utah Attorney General’s Office. During his career, he was trained by the FBI as a criminal profiler and served as the co-chair of the FBI’s Violent Criminal Apprehension Program National Board. King has consulted on hundreds of complex criminal cases around the world and created UTAP, the Utah Criminal Tracking and Analysis Project. He continues to provide behavioral assessments for law enforcement through the Cold Case Foundation.  King received the National Police Officer of the Year and Top Cop Honorable Mention award during his career.

 


Valrie Grant, GISP

Valrie Grant is the founder and Managing Director of GeoTechVision Ltd. She is a certified GIS professional with over 15 years of experience in Geospatial Sciences and over eight years’ experience as an entrepreneur. She is the current president of the Caribbean Urban Regional Information Systems Association (URISA) Chapter, a board member for URISA International, a member of United Nations Global Geospatial Information Management (UN-GGIM) Americas Caribbean Project Board and an accredited facilitator by the World Bank/Infodev Women Innovators Network in the Caribbean (WINC) Accelerator Program.

Among the awards Ms. Grant has received are the Jamaica GIS Entrepreneur Award (2012); the URISA Caribbean Chapter Leadership Award (2012); the 2013 National Commercial Bank’s ‘Women in Business’ Award;  Business Excellence Forum Female Entrepreneur of the Year Award 2015; Jamaica Chamber of Commerce Young Entrepreneur 2014; and Commonwealth Woman Entrepreneur of the Year 2015. She now serves as brand ambassador for commonwealth businesswomen.

 


Dr Lois Parkes, Regional Project Manager, Caribbean Leadership Project

Dr Parkes completed her tertiary studies at the University of the West Indies Mona campus where she pursued a degree in English literature. She also holds a Master’s Degree in Human Resource Development. On January 4th, 2016 the Caribbean leadership project (CLP) welcomed Dr Parkes as the Regional Project Manager. Before the CLP Dr Parkes served for over twenty (20) years in varying capacities in the Office of the Prime Minister, the Office of the Cabinet, and the Office of the Services Commissions.

Dr Parkes has been integrally involved in quite a few public sector transformation initiatives since 1999, including the establishment of the Performance Management and Appraisal System for the Public Sector, the decentralization of several HR functions, and the transformation of numerous Executive Agencies. Dr Parkes has also served on a number of inter-ministerial committees, including the Values and Ethics and the Public Sector Transformation Sub-Committees of the Permanent Secretaries Board.

 


 Mr Silburn Clarke, Chairman/ C.E.O, Spatial Innovision

Mr Silburn Clarke is the founder and CEO of Spatial Innovision Limited the leading geospatial solutions company in the Caribbean. Formed in 1998 the firm has a staff of 15 highly trained professionals in land surveying, forestry, physical planning, geomatics, geospatial sciences/applications, information technology, project management, logistics/supply chain management.  He has a Masters in Engineering (University of London) where he was the recipient of the Hart Prize for Academic Excellence in Photogrammetric Engineering in 1979 from the University College London. He has an MBA in Finance (UWI, Mona), MSc in IT (UWI, Mona) and is currently completing his Doctorate in Business Administration at MSBM, UWI.

Silburn was elected President of the Jamaica Computer Society (JCS) for 2010-2012. In April 2011 he commissioned the first Knowledge Economy Conference in the Caribbean (www.knowledgesocietyfoundation.com) widely acclaimed as hugely successful.

 


 Mr. Hopeton Ferguson, Vice President of Geospatial Products - Spatial Innovision Ltd

Hopeton Ferguson recently joined the Spatial Innovision Limited team as the Vice President of Geospatial Products. Hopeton previously worked at the Water Resources Authority  as the GIS Specialist for 10 years, he then continued his career development at Jamalco holding several positions such as GIS analyst,  Mine Services Supervisor and Senior Supervisor of Mine Planning with the responsibility of project/construction management for haul/parish roads,  reclamation and rehabilitation of mined out pits, GIS and Surveying. Hopeton was integral in the design and implementation WRA GIS and Jamalco enterprise  GIS System.

Hopeton is a Millennium Scholar recipient who earned a diploma in Physical Planning and a BSc. degree in Integrated Planning & Environmental Resource Development from the University of Technology. He also holds a MSc. Degree in Geographic Information System from UWI Trinidad and a MSc. Degree in Engineering Management from the Florida International University.


Milton Saunders

 Mr. Milton Saunders, Manager – Mapping Services Branch - National Land Agency

Mr. Milton Saunders, a graduate of the University of the West Indies Mona, holds a first Degree in Geography and a Master of Science in Computer Based Management Information Systems. Because of his academic background he sees himself first and foremost as Geography and has applied his knowledge in this area throughout his professional life. Mr. Saunders has been employed to the National Land Agency for the past fifteen years and over this period he has moved through the ranks and is now the Manager for the Mapping Services Branch. Among his responsibilities is to oversee the operations of the Cartographic, Photogrammetry, GIS Analysis, Cadastral Map Compilation, Regional Map Maintenance and Map Automation Units within the Agency. He has had the privilege of representing Jamaica as an expert delegate at multiple sittings of United Nation’s Global Geospatial Information Management committee. He played a key role in assisting the UN’s Sub-committee on Global Geodetic Reference frame in establishing a understanding on the topic among its delegates thereby enabling the committee to be successful in having a resolution on the subject passed by the United Nations. Mr Saunders strongly believes in sharing his knowledge based on the experience he has gained working in the Geospatial  field over the years. He sees the advancing of Geospatial science within Jamaica as critical in aiding the country to achieve its economic growth objective.


 

 Mrs. Shaniqueka Grant-Wallace, Geographic Information Systems Coordinator – Research Social Development Commission

Mrs. Wallace is from the parish of Clarendon. She found her niche as GIS Specialist while being employed at the Mona Geoinformatics Institute. 

She has experience with over 10 years in the field. She is the holder of a Bachelor of Science Degree in Management Information Systems, from the Excelsior Community College.

Currently, Mrs. Wallace serves as the GIS Coordinator, at the Social Development Commission where she is responsible for planning and implementing GIS related activities to ensure national objectives are met. 

 


 Mrs. Nathalie Ennis- Palmer, Senior GIS Analyst - National Land Agency

Mrs. Nathalie Ennis- Palmer is employed to the National Land Agency where she currently works as the Snr GIS Analyst . She has been with the Agency for ten years. Over this period she has worked on multiple projects and has made extensive use of varying types of GIS applications. Some of her major responsibilities now are ensuring the efficient production of customized maps and digital data in response to customer requests to the Agency. Added to this she plays an important role in ensuring the provisioning of spatial data for use on the web based products of the Agency which display spatial data such as iMap. Mrs. Ennis-Palmer is very hands on and spends a lot of time keeping abreast of the latest developments and trends in the Geospatial community. She is the holder of a Bachelor of Science Degree in Earth Sciences and an MSc in Environmental Management from the University of the West Indies Mona. She is currently completing an MPhil in Geography. Mrs. Palmer therefore possesses a wealth of Knowledge from both her academic and professional exposure. This is knowledge that she is always willing to share.

 


 JUDITH TAYLOR, Chief Catographer, National Land Agency

Ms. Taylor has been employed to the National Land Agency since 2001 prior to which she was employed to the Survey Department. Ms. Taylor started working as a Cartographer and now occupies the position of Chief Cartographer. Over the years she has gathered extensive experience in this capacity working on Maps of varying scales and types and has worked on numerous mapping projects for the Agency; the most current being the  large scale Master Map Series for the town of Port Antonio.

Ms. Taylor is the holder of Diploma in Geoinformatics specializing in GIS and Geo-visualization which she obtained in 2016 at the University of Twente ITC… a prestigious institution that focuses on Earth related Sciences in the Netherlands.  Because of her passion for Cartography, Ms. Taylor takes pleasure in sharing her knowledge in this area and does so whenever the opportunity presents itself.

 


 Carlton J Smith MSc MIS, PMP, CISA, Managing Partner - GeoTechVision Enterprises Ltd.

Mr. Smith has over 20 years in the Information Technology industry developing, implementing, supporting and managing Information Systems and technology infrastructure in the Financial Services sector.

Mr. Smith earned his Master’s in Management Information Systems (MIS) at the University of the West Indies and is a certified Project Management Professional (PMI PMP) and a Certified Information Systems Auditor (ISACA CISA).

 

 


 Dave Williams, GIS Manager - Jamaica Public Service Co. Ltd

Dave Williams is the GIS Manager at the Jamaica Public Service Co. Ltd. He received a B.S. degree in Computer information Systems from the University of Windsor and M.B.A. from the University of New Orleans. He has been active in the field of GIS for over a decade with experience from field mapping, project management, data modelling and system configuration. 

While at JPS working with various teams, he has applied GIS and Location Analytics to numerous areas across the utility including Outage Management, Reliability, System Losses, and Asset management.

 

 


Miss Jennilyn Burrell, Forest Technician - Forestry Department

Jennilyn Burrell is a Forest Technician at the Forestry Department, where she has held her position for almost two years. She received her BSc. in Urban and Regional Planning from the University of Technology, Jamaica in 2012 and has since worked in several capacities in the GIS field.

Her current duties at the Forestry Department, has given her the opportunity to work closely with the ever changing technology that ESRI has had to offer. Her maintenance and monitoring of the Agency’s Forest Rangers has launched her into a world of online mapping, through ArcGIS Collector, Operations Dashboard and other platforms.

 


Mrs. Nadine Brown, Manager of Sustainable Development and Regional Planning - Planning Institute of Jamaica

Mrs. Brown is the Manager of Sustainable Development and Regional Planning at the Planning Institute of Jamaica.  She is, among other things,   responsible for providing policy advice on various sustainable development issues and monitoring related policies, programmes and projects, particularly with respect to climate change and urban and regional planning. She has served in GIS positions at the National Land Agency (NLA) and the PIOJ and is integrally involved in the preparation of socio-economic and environmental impact assessment reports on disasters affecting the island.

Her qualifications include a Diploma in Land Surveying from the University of Technology, an MSc. in Geographic Information Systems for Urban Applications from ITC, the Netherlands and a MSc in Computer Based Management Information Systems from the University of the West Indies (UWI).


DERRICK (RICKY) MAHFOOD, Executive Chairman - Hawkeye Electronic Security Ltd

Derrick (Ricky) Mahfood is the Executive Chairman of Hawkeye Electronic Security Ltd. which he founded in February, 1988.  He was educated at Wolmer’s Boys School and attended college at the University of Florida. After leaving university he worked for a few years in Miami in the restaurant business and sales, before returning home in 1981.On his return to Jamaica he worked alongside his father who was a land developer involved in residential developments in Kingston. Then towards the end of 1987 he and his brother Mark who had formed Ranger Security a few years prior, began discussing entering the electronic security business and Hawkeye was birthed. He is a devoted Christian with a passion for Christ and sharing his faith with others.

He has been married to Sandra for 22 years and together they have 5 children: Matthew, Sarah, Stephen, Jessica & Samantha. He has been an avid cyclist for the past 10 years and for relaxation he enjoys reading and cooking.

 


ANDRÉ MCLEAN, Group Director of Operations & Technology - Guardsman Alarms

A Senior Management Executive with over 10 years of experience in Financial and Operational Analysis and Evaluation, Strategic Planning and Assessment, Management Information Systems, Asset Management and Controls, Human Resource Management, Acquisitions, Business Development and Negotiation. High performing executive with a proven track record of Business Process re-engineering and successful in establishing management systems.  Excellent Leadership and Management skills to motivate, direct and develop team members to maximize cohesion and productivity whilst defining culture. Ability to develop strategic long term partnerships and communicate effectively with all levels of decision makers

McLean is currently a Chartered Certified Accountant and holds an MBA in Banking and Finance at the University of the West Indies, from which he also holds a BSc in Management Studies and Accounts.  Andre McLean thrives best in challenging environments. Earlier on in McLean’s life, he represented Jamaica as a national volleyball player, junior national basketball player, and junior national chess champion.


 Raj Patil, Strategic Partnerships and Marketing Manager - Lucity

Raj brings with him more than two decades of industry experience in the technology-enabled disciplines of Public Sector Infrastructure Management, Community Development and Government Finance. His tenure includes working with Esri®, Cityworks, Hansen (Infor), IBM and KPMG. Raj’s focus areas in recent years have been in global business & partner development, client relations and marketing. Raj has worked with a wide array of leading, GIS-based technologies in diverse geographies, markets and cultures including North America, Asia and the Caribbean. At Lucity, Raj is responsible for the development of the company’s Strategic Partnerships, International Business and Marketing programs to supplement and strengthen the continued growth of Lucity’s Esri GIS-based public infrastructure management solutions and service offerings in the U.S., Canada, Caribbean and other target international regions.

Raj’s educational credentials include an MBA in International Business, and BS in Computer Science & Engineering.


Mrs. Rochelle Clarke-Grey, Director , Research and Evaluation (Actg.) - Ministry of National Security, Jamaica

Mrs. Rochelle Clarke-Grey is currently acting in the capacity of Director, Research and Evaluation, Ministry of National Security, Jamaica.  Since November 2011, she assumed the Chair of the Jamaica Crime Observatory – Integrated Crime and Violence Information System (JCO-ICVIS), with the overall aim to provide reliable disaggregated data to assist in increasing responsiveness and better planning for crime prevention initiatives.

Mrs. Clarke-Grey has served as a public servant in the sphere of health and national security for the past fifteen (15) years in various spheres – border security, policy analysis, research and evaluation, parish health administration, workplace policy implementation in the area of HIV. As a Fulbright Scholarship Alumni, she attained a Masters of Public Administration specialising in Policy Analysis and Evaluation at the Georgia State University and was recognized by the MNS with the Leadership Award, 2016 for the Jamaica Crime Observatory.

 


 Mechelle N. Best, PhD

Barbadian by birth and Caribbean in outlook, Dr. Mechelle Best is an Associate Professor and Chair for the Department of Recreation and Tourism Management and a Faculty Associate with the Institute for Sustainability at California State University Northridge. A former Fulbright/OAS Ecology Scholar for the Eastern Caribbean, she conducts research and publishes on various aspects of environmental management, cultural heritage, and sustainability in tourism. Mechelle is co-author of Contemporary Caribbean Tourism: Concepts and Cases (2015) and is currently conducting research on the intersection between slavery heritage and tourism in the Caribbean.

Mechelle has over 15 years’ professional experience in the tourism industry and was one of the pioneers of environmental management for tourism in the Caribbean, having entered the field whilst it was still in its embryonic stage in the 1990s. She has consulted independently for hotels and attractions and on USAID and IADB-funded projects in the Caribbean as an Environmental Management Specialist. 

 


Mrs. Lisa-Gaye Greene, Senior Projects Manager - Mona Geoinformatics Institute (MGI)

Mrs. Lisa-Gaye Greene is a graduate of the University of the West Indies where she completed a Bachelor of Arts degree in Geography and is currently pursuing her Masters in Geographic Information Systems from Lund University in Sweden.  She is currently the Senior Projects Manager at the Mona Geoinformatics Institute (MGI) located at the UWI Mona campus, where she is responsible for overseeing the management of MGI’s Human and Social Mapping portfolio. Her active crime-related projects include the mapping and spatial analyses of major crimes, violence-related injuries, health data, road crashes and community assets.  She has worked with the Jamaica Constabulary Force and Jamaica Defence Force for over 10 years, delivering training to the security forces and also the provision of special geospatial analytical reports on crime and security.  She is also a member of the Violence Prevention Alliance and has had her work published in the Small Arms Survey and PLoS ONE.  Mrs. Greene was the recipient of the 2013 FIA Road Safety Scholarship Programme where she pursued studies in road safety policy and promotion.

 


 Ranford Stephen Campbell, GISP

Ranford Campbell is a Certified Geographic Information System Professional (GISP), He is a graduate of the National Law University New Delhi, India, where pursued Graduate Studies in the areas of Urban Environmental Management and Law.
He completed Advance studies in Remote Sensing with special emphasis on Digital Imagery Processing and Geographic Information Systems (GIS) from the Indian Institute of Remote Sensing Dehradun, India. He also pursued graduate studies in the areas of Geographic Information Systems (GIS) for Land Management at the University of Technology Jamaica. Mr Campbell currently serves in the capacity of Geographical Information Systems (GIS) Coordinator at the National Environment and Planning Agency (NEPA).
He previously served at the National Land Agency) for the past seven (13) years as a Senior GIS Analyst.

 


Eromonsele Akhidenor, Research Officer - National Environment and Planning Agency

Eromonsele Akhidenor is a Research Officer with the National Environment and Planning Agency. He holds two Masters Degrees; the first is in Population Studies and Demography from the University of Benin, Nigeria and a second Master’s Degree in Natural Resource Management from the University of the West Indies Mona Campus. Mr. Akhidenor’s background spans the fields of Geoinformatics, Spatial analysis and statistics, Natural Resource Management, Transportation and Regional Development, Urban Transport and Land Use, Hazard Mapping and Vulnerability Assessment, Agricultural Disaster Risk, Resource Efficiency, Cleaner Production and waste Management. His specific interest is in advancing an evidence-based approach in the development of environmental and planning policies that addresses emerging sustainability challenges. His professional career has focused on developing environmental policies and management of natural resources. Prior to joining the National Environment and Planning Agency, Mr. Akhidenor worked within the World Health Organisation and the Nigeria Oil Industry.

 


 Dr. Arpita Mandal, Senior Lecturer - Department of Geography and Geology at the University of the West Indies, Mona 

Dr. Arpita Mandal is a Senior Lecturer in the Department of Geography and Geology at the University of the West Indies, Mona. She teaches Water Resources, Hydrology and Hydrological Modelling, Engineering Hydrology and Geophysics. Her research focuses on hydrological modeling, hydraulics, climate change and impact on flood risk and water resources. She has worked on projects funded by the Climate Development Knowledge Network, UK, World Bank, ICLEI with colleagues from Climate Studies Group, UWI Mona, UWI Cave Hill and St Augustine, East Tennessee State University and Ghent University, Belgium. She has also conducted educational workshops for parish disaster coordinators, stakeholders in Jamaica on hydrological modelling, use of Open Source APP (ODK) for disaster data collection. She is also the technical committee member for Global Water Partnership, Caribbean. She has worked with both Government and Non-Government Organizations in Jamaica and in the Caribbean such as Caribbean Community Climate Change Center (CCCCC) on projects related to geospatial data, disaster risk reduction, climate change and flood risk. She is currently involved in a year-long training programmer funded by USAID and run by CCCC involving training of regional and local technical persons for the islands of the Caribbean on hydrological models and tropical storm models.


 Aleem Mahabir

Aleem Mahabir is currently pursuing an MPhil in Geography at the University of the West Indies, Mona. He attended the same institution for undergrad, where he successfully earned a Bachelor of Science Degree in Geography, with Honours (First Class). Throughout his undergraduate career he served as an executive member of the UWI Geographical Society, and was a recipient of the Barry Floyd Prizes in First and Second year geography. He was a research assistant for the Hungry Cities Partnership Project in Kingston, and has also volunteered at the Almond Town Improvement Project facilitated by the Metabolic Foundation, a Dutch-based non-profit NGO. His research interests focus on applied geography in the fields of urban and regional planning, crime and social exclusion. His current research looks at the link between crime and social exclusion throughout hotspots in Trinidad and Tobago. He is supervised by Dr. Robert Kinlocke. 

 


 Shavel Watson

Shavel Watson, a Geologist and a council member of the Geological Society of Jamaica, holds a Bachelors of Science degree in Geology from the University of the West Indies, Mona. During her internship at the Caribbean Catastrophe Risk Insurance Facility, Ms. Watson made invaluable contributions using ArcGIS and HEC RAS on the Hope River watershed. Representing the University of the West Indies, Ms. Watson has worked as a facilitator for the Caribbean Community Climate Change Centre's National Training across the Caribbean. She went on to designing the Training Manual for HEC GEORAS and HEC RAS for the Hope River Watershed in Kingston, Jamaica as a part of USAID -CCCCC's National Training Workshop in Saint Kitts and Nevis. Shavel is now completing a Master of Philosophy degree in Geology as she extends the body of research on Jamaica’s limestones.

 


Denerene Allen,  Research Coordinator - Social Development Commission

Denerene Allen is a Research Coordinator for the Social Development Commission, an agency under the Ministry of Local Government and Community Development, Government of Jamaica. Where her focus for the last 14 years has been on increasing the pool of information available to facilitate community based planning, policy and project development. She graduated from the University of Technology in 2001 with a Bachelors of Science in Urban and Regional Planning and completed her Masters of Science in the Built Environment in 2014.