Rockhouse Foudation Chairman Paul Salmon and Attorney-At-Law Gopal Burgher Among COJO 2018 Honorees

Author  Lyndon Taylor

NEW YORK, NY – Rockhouse Foundation Chairman Paul Salmon will be presented with the 2018 COJO Humanitarian Award by the New York based non-profit Children of Jamaica Outreach (COJO) Inc. The presentation will take place at the Hilton New York, JFK Airport on Saturday, December 1, 2018 during the organization’s 24th Annual Scholarship Gala & Awards which begins with a cocktail reception at 7:30 pm to be followed by dinner and dance. 

paul salmonSalmon, who also serves as Chairman of Rockhouse Hotel through the work of his Foundation has focused its resources and energy towards improving early childhood education institutions. Over the past decade, the Foundation has invested over US$4 million in projects improving education for the children in the Negril area. Since its inception, the Foundation has completely transformed and modernized six schools: Moreland Hill Primary and Infant Schools, Negril All Age School, Negril Basic School, Little Bay All Age and Infant Schools, Bunch of Stars E.C.I., and Savanna-la-Mar Inclusive Infant Academy (SIIA), in addition to the complete renovation and expansion of the Negril Community Library. The Savanna-la-Mar Inclusive Infant Academy (SIIA) is a new school purposely built to service those with special needs in an inclusive environment.

Gopal M. Burgher, another of this year’s honorees is Founder/Managing Partner and Head of the Capital Markets and Finance practice group of BurgherGray LLP, a corporate law firm based in New York City. He will receive the COJO Visionary Award.

Over the years, Mr. Burgher’s Gopal Burghercommitment to community activism has manifested itself in his service to and support of a number of charitable and philanthropic organizations and causes, including the American Foundation for The University of the West Indies, The Fredonia College Foundation, ESPOIR Youth Program Inc., Children of Jamaica Outreach (COJO) Inc., Professional Jamaicans for Jamaica Inc., and the Dance Theater of Harlem, among others.

Rounding out this year’s honorees is Feurtado Shipping which will receive the 2018 COJO Corporate Service Award and Dr. Michael A. Wiltshire, currently the Principal of Medgar Evers College Preparatory School who will receive this 2018 COJO Distinguished Service Award.

Feurtado Shipping had its genesis in 1981, when Joslyn Feurtado, a Freight Forwarder and Customs Broker in Jamaica with more than 25 years experience and founding member of the Jamaica Customs Brokers Association, saw the need for a better service to cater to Jamaican immigrants in the New York area. Since its establishment over three decades ago, Feurtado Shipping, licensed and bonded by the Federal Maritime Commission (FMC), has transformed the way customers received their shipments in Jamaica, removing the headache and hassle of going to the government wharves, by delivering all shipments from privately owned warehouses, making the experience more seamless and secure thereby reducing the time needed to clear and receive shipments in Kingston or Montego Bay, Jamaica. During that time, the company has been a sponsor and supporter of many groups and organizations based in the New York tri-state area, including COJO.

Dr. Michael A. Wiltshire is a big proponent of a holistic approach to education and was appointed Principal of Medgar Evers College Preparatory School August 2001. This is an approach that focuses on the total development of the student and as a result, all students are encouraged to participate in the performing and fine arts as well as sports.

Under his leadership, Medgar Evers College Preparatory School has been transformed from a high school of 600 students to a premiere college preparatory secondary school (grades 6-12) with a population of over 1260 students.  He has put in place a unique secondary school model at Medgar Evers College Preparatory School.  For the past seven years, Medgar Evers College Preparatory School has maintained a graduation rate between 95-98.8%.  Most of these graduates are admitted into some of the most prestigious colleges and universities in this country, including all the Ivy Leagues. 

Chairman & Founder of COJO, Gary Williams, has high praises for this year’s illustrious group of honorees who through their respective endeavors have sought to play a role in positively impacting the future.

Tickets for the annual gala are now available and can be obtained by contacting the Children of Jamaica Outreach (COJO) office at 1-888- 275-0121. Proceeds from this major fundraiser are used to provide scholarships and support for deserving students in state care in Jamaica.