Caribbean-Themed Franchise Honors Eight Community Leaders for Their Outstanding Work and Commitment
BRONX, NY, November 24, 2017 /24-7PressRelease/ — Golden Krust Caribbean Bakery & Grill raised $100,000 at its 12th Annual Excellence Awards Gala on Nov. 10, 2017, at the VIP Country Club in New Rochelle, N.Y.
More than 300 attendees – among them leaders in business, nonprofit, education, and other fields joined with the families and friends of the Hawthorne family, which founded Golden Krust in 1989 with a single retail location. Today, the family-owned and operated business is franchised in North America, with 120 locations along the U.S. East Coast, as well as in Texas and Canada.
All proceeds from the night will support the mission of the Mavis & Ephraim Hawthorne Golden Krust Foundation, a nonprofit that was established by the Hawthorne family to provide scholarships to college-bound high school students from underserved communities. Golden Krust has provided more than 350 scholarships to students since the foundation first began its work. Awardees each receive $1,000 each per year for four years of undergraduate study. Following a competitive process, three students were selected this year for scholarships. They are:
Christina McBean, a graduate of St. Andrew High School for Girls in Kingston, Jamaica. McBean is now enrolled at Howard University, where she is studying physics. Aaditi Tamhankar, a graduate of Cherry Hill High School West in Cherry Hill, N.J. Tamhankar is pursuing studies in healthcare management at the Wharton School of the University of Pennsylvania.The final scholarship of the night went to Adam Fane, a graduate of Bronx International High School. Fane is now studying political science and economics at DePauw University in Greencastle, Indiana.
“Investing in the future, and in the next generation, is the only way to keep dreams, fulfill visions and build legacies,” said Lowell Hawthorne, Golden Krust’s chairman and CEO, and chairman of the foundation. “Golden Krust is proud to continue to invest in our communities, as these communities have welcomed us so warmly and remain the linchpin of our ongoing success.”
Mr Fane, one of the scholarship recipients stated “I am very proud to be a part of this group of scholars. Because of the Mavis & Ephraim Hawthorne scholarship, I no longer have to worry about how I will buy my books, or find transportation to school,” he said.
The eight community leaders who were honored at the event were recognized for their selflessness, ingenuity and commitment to their communities. The honorees were: Dr. Camille A. Clare, Champion of Education Award. A board- certified obstetrician/gynecologist, Dr. Clare is the Director of Resident Research in her department, and the Associate Dean of Diversity and Inclusion at New York Medical College. She has received numerous awards for excellence in medical student teaching, and is a dedicated clinician, researcher and educator with a particular focus on healthcare disparities in the Caribbean and African diaspora.
Thomas A. Farrington, Humanitarian Award. After being diagnosed with prostate cancer in 2000, he resolved to found an organization to educate black men about their prostate cancer risk. He felt a particular drive to act because he lost his father and both grandfathers to the disease. In 2003, he founded the Prostate Health Education Network (PHEN), a nonprofit that that works to teach men in the black community about this disease. Farrington is the author of “Battling The Killer Within” and the follow-up, “Battling The Killer Within and Winning.”
Roy Leslie Reid, Mountain Mover Award. After an accomplished career as a business executive, Reid founded Corporate Courier N.Y. Inc., and Trans Management Corporation, where he currently serves as President and CEO. In addition, Reid has worked tirelessly to improve the lives of the less fortunate in his native Jamaica, providing donations to hospitals and clinics, furnishing computers to rural schools and partnering to form RCM Community, a nonprofit that works to give local children a technological edge.
Ivanhoe V. Ffriend, Business Excellence Award. Ffriend is the president and CEO of Ffriend Enterprises, Ltd., and Principal of Ffriend Financial Group. He holds an MBA in finance from Baruch College of the City University of New York, and is a registered investment advisor licensed by the New York Department of Law and FINRA. with over 38 years of experience as a financial professional, Mr. Ffriend has built an award-winning firm of advisors specializing in qualified pension, estate and general financial planning, as well as insurance and investment services.
The Rev. Eric Wendel Lee, Sr., Community Service Award. Eric Wendel Lee, Sr., is a graduate of Morehouse College in Atlanta, where he earned a Bachelor of Arts degree with honors in History (1993). He then attended Vanderbilt University Divinity School in Nashville. Pastor Lee has served on the boards of numerous community organizations, including Hands on Newton, Newton County High School Council, Faith Works of Newton County, One Voice of Newton County, Equity Council of Rockdale Public School System, Newton County Tomorrow, IMPACT, United Rockdale Summit, Light House, Village of Rockdale County and the Rockdale County United Way. He has also worked as a Professional Child Advocate in Indianapolis, Indiana and in Atlanta.
Robert “Bobby” Clarke, Visionary Award. Clarke is the founder and CEO of Irie Jam Media, the media empire through which he brings Caribbean programming to listeners in the New York area. Clarke’s first business venture was Bronx Travel Express. The business was successful, but the visionary had bigger dreams, which sparked the idea for Irie Jam Radio, which has become a staple in the community. In addition to his success in broadcasting, he has planned and produced several large music festivals, including the annual Irie Jamboree, the event which has become North America’s premier reggae festival. Clarke, along with collaborator and partner Louis Grant, has worked closely with Grace-Kennedy and Western Union Money Services to promote track and field events, including the Inter-Secondary Schools Boys and Girls Championships, or Champs, in Kingston, Jamaica, and the world-famous Penn Relays.
Douglas & Priscilla Dixon, Champion of Education Awards. Charles Douglas Dixon, Esq., is a Principal with MEDX Global Healthcare Solutions, Madison Square Partners II, Total Business Solutions and Cadiz Captial LLC. Following a distinguished career in business, corporate and real estate law, Mr. Dixon established his own law firm. Among his clients are the National Minority Supplier Development Council, the largest minority business development organization in the world. Dixon has shown a strong commitment to the Westchester community through his service on the African-American Advisory Board and the Association of Black Lawyers of Westchester. He is on the board of directors of the Beta Zeta Boule Foundation and the Boys and Girls Club of New Rochelle. Since his retirement from the practice of law, Mr. Dixon currently serves as Chairman of the Arthur S. Dixon Family Foundation.
Priscilla Dixon has a Ph.D in psychology, where she specialized in developmental and environmental psychology. She spent 37 years as a professor and college administrator. In addition, she has trained educators in the New York City public school system and has published her work in professional journals and popular magazines. Mrs. Dixon is a licensed psychologist, and she has a Master of Divinity degree from Union Theological Seminary in New York. For most of her life, she has sung gospel music with her siblings, The Hambrick Singers.
The Mavis & Ephraim Hawthorne Golden Krust Foundation was established in 2005 with the mission to help educate and assist with college completion through scholarships, mentorship and internships. As of this year, the MEHGKF has granted over 350 scholarships and counting. Each student who is selected will receive four thousand dollars over four years. Not only are they committing to the financial support of the scholarship recipients, but they are providing them with a lifelong community and network. Learn more about the foundation at
About Golden Krust Caribbean Bakery & Grill
Golden Krust Caribbean Bakery & Grill is a manufacturer and distributor of Caribbean food products and franchisor of Caribbean-themed restaurants in North America. The company’s products can be found in its franchises, supermarkets, hospitals, schools, correctional institutions and food service facilities, sporting facilities, other retail outlets and at special outdoor events throughout the United States.
In 1989, Lowell Hawthorne, along with his wife, Lorna, and four of his siblings and their spouses, pooled all their resources to open the first Golden Krust retail location on East Gun Hill Road in the Bronx, NY. By 1996 they owned 17 Restaurants throughout New York City. The business became so successful that the Hawthornes were encouraged to create franchises and they seized the opportunity to do just that.
In that same year, Golden Krust became the first Caribbean-owned business in the U.S. to be granted a franchise license.
Today, Golden Krust Caribbean Bakery & Grill operates a chain of over 100 restaurants in 10 states — New York, New Jersey, Connecticut, Pennsylvania, Georgia, Florida, Maryland, North Carolina, Massachusetts and Texas – and in Toronto, Canada.
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