Press Release
12 May 2016 - 3:30pm

Mr. Damien Williams of the B.V.I. Seventh-day Adventist School is the winner of the “What Does Being British Mean to You?” essay competition.

Williams won first place in the secondary division category and was declared the overall winner of the competition judged by the English Department of the H. Lavity Stoutt Community College. 

The Seventh-day Adventist School student said he was honored and surprised by the win and credited his grandmother, father, mother and his Principal, Mr. Wade Tobin for their role in his success. 

Williams who has a passion for reading and writing and has done so throughout his life and within his church stated that he also writes from a passionate point of view.

He said, “People probably frown on writing because it is not as exciting or as talked about as sports but if you just put pen to paper and write every day, at the end of the month, you’ll be surprised by what you wrote.” 

The student shared his observation on how writing impacts individuals. “It’s a beautiful thing to see how people who read and write express themselves on a daily basis.  People who write and read, their minds are far more interesting than those who don’t and if you look into it, anybody can read and write, when they put their mind to it.”    

He said there is a tendency in the society and throughout the world to stereotype males, adding, “I wouldn’t just say in this society but in the world on a whole, they put men down. They stereotype us to say we are going to drop out of school and join gangs.  Some of us hang with the crowd, but we know how to do our work and if you are passionate about something you will get it done.”

The essay competition was held as an activity to commemorate the 90th Birthday of Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II.

Eleven submissions were received and from that number, five essays were awarded first or second place at the Tortola Beacon Lighting Ceremony on April 21. 

Mr. Jamoll St. Rose, the sole submission in the Tertiary Division, won first prize in his category and Ms. Carissa Richards secured the first place in the Adult Category.  Ms. Eileene L. Parsons, OBE captured second place in the adult category and Ms. Jada Angus of the Elmore Stoutt High School captured second place in the secondary division.

First place recipients will be awarded a $250.00 cash prize while second place recipients will be awarded a $150.00 cash prize.  All participants were presented with certificates signed by the Deputy Governor and Chairman of the Queen Elizabeth II 90th Birthday Planning Committee, Mrs. V. Inez Archibald, CBE.

The full essays can be found online on Government’s website at They will also be aired on local television and will be posted on Government’s YouTube Channel.

The Virgin Islands received special permission from Buckingham Palace to host the Territory’s 90th birthday celebrations for Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II, on her actual birthday, Thursday, April 21, 2016, a public holiday in the Virgin Islands.   Her Majesty’s 90th Birthday Celebration in the United Kingdom takes place in the private grounds of Windsor Castle in the evenings of May 12 to 15, 2016.




Colene A. Penn

Communications Officer
Governor’s Group 
Telephone: 468-2350

Ministry or Department Associated with this News Article:

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