Every now and again, I feel like celebrating the success of my friends.
Joan Pierre is more than my friend. She is a close friend with whom I have collaborated on many, many projects over the years. She is well known for her professional reputation as a first class event manager.
Today, I choose to highlight her string of successes over the years as an internationally celebrated promoter of Caribbean fashion and textiles. Here is the text of the letter I wrote to her on the occasion of one of her greatest successes.
Mrs. Joan Pierre
Producer and Creative Director
“Cuttin’ Style Fashion Gala”
Toronto Pan / Parapan American Games 2015
Your July 2015 presentation “Cuttin’ Style Fashion Gala” was a perfect blend of artistic sensitivity, creative instinct and exciting stagecraft, a feisty combination of flavours that earned frequent outbursts of enthusiastic applause from your captivated audience.
Having seen the raving reviews of the production in the international media, I was even more elated when I read the congratulatory and thank-you letter you received from the creative director of Panamania, the cultural segment of the Toronto Pan / Parapan American Games 2015. The letter said in part:
“On behalf of myself, Toronto 2015, and PANAMANIA, I am writing to express our sincere thanks for producing Cuttin’ Style, a brilliant celebration of contemporary Caribbean fashion.
“It was truly an unparalleled world class event, magnificent in every way. From early conception through to final execution, you were able to navigate the way forward with great panache
Our entire Pan Am Arts Council were thrilled with the final result.
“It will be an event that the City of Toronto will remember for some time, and I can’t thank you enough for your invaluable contribution.”
As the former consul general of Trinidad and Tobago in Toronto, I am so proud to have been associated with your string of successes in the marketing and promotion of Caribbean fashion as both an art form and a commercially viable enterprise.
I am not at all surprised that you have reached such heights in your professional career. I recall my very first collaboration with you and the other members of our team in your production of “Cuttin’ Style: A Taste of Trinidad And Tobago in Fashion and Textiles” held in Toronto in 2008 and again in 2009. It was by far the most successful aspect of the commercial promotion of “Brand Trinidad and Tobago” undertaken by the consulate general in Toronto over the extended period of seven years from December 2003 to December 2010.
You have consolidated your international reputation as an accomplished producer for the Caribbean fashion industry. The designers, the models and Caribbean people everywhere welcome your productions of which they are justifiably proud.
Both governments and the international business community will continue to participate actively in your productions because they have seen for themselves the immense value these ventures bring to the fashion, food and tourism industries.
Congratulations to you and to all those who have enjoyed the benefits of your successes.
Michael G-A Lashley