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The Caribbean’s Most Interesting People of 2014

The Caribbean’s Most Interesting People of 2014

Posted by Shanelle Weir on December 30, 2014

Who were thhe Caribbean’s newsmakers this year? Who were the people within the Caribbean doing interesting things, or the people from the Caribbean doing great work around the world? Who were the people in the Caribbean conversation? Our Most Interesting list for 2014 takes a look across the region for the artists, the influencers, the newsmakers, the characters. These are our picks for the Caribbean’s most interesting people of 2014, in no particular order.

 

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Gaston Browne

After a sweeping election victory in June, Antigua and Barbuda Prime Minister Gaston Browne hit the ground running. Seemingly every week, his government signed a major new investment deal. Later, he brought in Robert De Niro to build a hotel. Then his government began talking about making Antigua the region’s economic powerhouse, a Singapore on the Caribbean Sea. Whether he can pull it off or not remains to be seen; but Browne has been calling for bold ideas and big projects in a manner not seen in the region in recent years — and that makes him eminently interesting.

 

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Nina Compton

St Lucia native Nina Compton’s run on Top Chef united viewers across the Caribbean, much like Jamaican Tessanne Chin did on The Voice in 2013. Blessed with expert culinary talent and natural charisma, Compton was soon after named St Lucia’s culinary ambassador — and she continues to be major voice for the power of Caribbean cuisine — globally. We’re excited to see what she does next.

 

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Alia Atkinson

When you think of Jamaican athletics, it’s likely that you think first of the island’s stellar sprinters. But 25-year-old Olympian Alia Atkinson is changing that conversation. Earlier this month, Atkinson won Jamaica’s first-ever gold medal at the World Short Course Championships, taking home the crown in the 100m breastroke. She was also the first-ever black woman to win a world swimming title.

 

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Edouard Duval-Carrie

Artist Edouard Duval-Carrie’s career path typifies a common Caribbean experience. He was born in Haiti, grew up in Puerto Rico, studied in Canada and then found his greatest success in the United States. And the dynamic Duval-Carrie made headlines this year when he debuted a solo exhibition, Imagined Landscapes, at the new Perez Art Museum Miami, which helped to kick off the largest Caribbean art exhibition in the world this year, Caribbean: Crossroads of the World. 

 

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Usain Bolt

As it was last year, it’s impossible to put together this list without including Bolt, the Caribbean’s most famous ambassador and one of the most talented athletes in history. Bolt, who has made inroads in his ad pitchman career, has a remarkable talent for staying in the global conversation, even when he isn’t on the track. That makes him irrepressibly interesting, time and again.

 

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Rihanna

Like Bolt, the Bajan superstar is seemingly always in the public’s consciousness, a larger-than-life persona, walking on the edge and defiantly pushing against the boundaries of creativity and entertainment. This year, she expanded her global reach, most recently becoming a new creative director at sporting brand Puma. It’s a growing empire that shows no signs of slowing down.

 

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Roosevelt Skerrit

At just 42, Dominica’s Roosevelt Skerrit is the youngest Prime Minister in the Caribbean. But despite his youth, earlier this month he and the Dominica Labour Party won his third consecutive election, marking the beginning of his fourth consecutive term, albeit with a reduced majority.

 

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Tim Duncan

Few athletes, Caribbean or otherwise, exemplify professionalism like Tim Duncan. The native of St Croix in the US Virgin Islands has been a model of consistency and sportsmanship in his so-far-18-year career with the San Antonio Spurs. But it was his renewed push to lead San Antonio to a dominating NBA Finals victory (his fifth NBA championshiop) in June that made him one of the region’s most interesting figures.

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