Caribbean Conference on Sport Sciences Focuses on Golden Opportunities for Wealth Creation in Sport

Dr. Donna-Marie Wynter-Adams, Head, Caribbean School of Sport Sciences, Faculty of Science and Sport, University of Technology, Jamaica  presents a gift basket to Mr Christopher Dehring, CEO, Ready TV following his keynote address at the 9th annual Caribbean Conference on Sport Sciences held on Friday, April 12, 2019 at Lecture Theatre 50, Shared Facilities Building, Papine Campus.

The Faculty of Science and Sport (FOSS) hosted its 9th annual Caribbean Conference on Sport Sciences on Friday, April 12, 2019 at the Shared Facilities Building, Papine Campus.  Under the theme, “Sport: Golden Opportunities for Development and Wealth Creation,” the Conference featured a first-rate cadre of speakers who elaborated on the theme from their personal and professional experiences.

Dr. Kamilah Hylton, Dean, FOSS in her welcome remarks pointed to the influence of sports on economic outcomes visible in the multi-billion dollar sportswear and equipment industry.  The Dean noted that development potential also exists in the staging of sporting events at the grassroots, national and international levels.  She lamented however, that “investment in sports in developed countries is leaps and bounds ahead of that in developing nations.”  In this regard she urged that “we must seek to capitalize on the potential of brand Jamaica’s sporting prowess by developing local markets in which sports-related services are provided.”

In this context, Dr. Hylton told the large gathering of sports administrators, athletes, educators, students and members of the business community, that the Conference was intended to “facilitate the multi-disciplinary networking and discussion in a holistic manner” looking specifically at the various factors to be considered for tapping into opportunities for wealth creation through sports.

Professor Stephen Vasciannie, President, UTech, Jamaica in commending the organisers of the conference and the focus on examining opportunities for economic development through sport, said that the conference also reaffirms the University’s commitment to “strengthening the role of science and sport aligned to national goals and in particular with respect to Jamaica’s Vision 2030 Development Goals which include the use of science and its applications to pursue our aspirations for sustainable development, global competitiveness and long-term resilience.”

Keynote speaker, Mr Christopher Dehring, CEO, Ready TV shared  success stories and lessons learnt during his stint as Chairman of Cricket World Cup held in Jamaica in April 2007.  He pointed to the development of subsequent novel innovations such as the Red Stripe Mound all-inclusive party stand  at Sabina Park.  “We took some the cheapest areas at Sabina Park and made them into the most expensive ticket to cricket anywhere in the world,”  he said, explaining that the mound was successful because it created a special experience for cricket goers by adding music and professionalism to capitalise on the nexus between sport and music in the Caribbean. 

Building a Network

CEO, Mayberry Investment, Mr Gary Peart in his presentation, underscored the importance of financial planning for retirement from sport for athletes in particular, and retirement from work-life for members of the public in general.  Noting that athletes have a shorter professional career  period, he encouraged athletes and others to consider personal investment options such as equity accounts, shares on the Jamaica Stock Exchange and investment in real estate.  Peart also emphasized the importance of building relationships through a good network that will add value to an athlete’s personal brand.  

The advice was endorsed by Olympian Mrs Juliet Cuthbert Flynn, MP who shared her personal story of how she created financial wealth through proper planning, investment and taking good advice from her mentor, fellow Olympian Merlene Ottey.  Cuthbert also  advised athletes to “live within your means and invest your earnings.” 

Other Opening Ceremony speakers were Mr Dean Hardman, Head of Tournament Services  for the Rugby League World Cup 2021 and  Mr Norman Peart, Sport Agent for Olympic legend Usain Bolt. Peart shared details of his management plan for Bolt, incorporating what he described as a complete package comprising consistent achievement, character building, authenticity and social media engagement.  He told the gathering that together these attributes have contributed to Usain’s multi-million dollar net worth which was reportedly about US$31 (Forbes, 2018). The Sports Agent was also keen to point out that sponsors look for several qualities in an athlete in determining their brand’s investment.  Peart said that sponsors like to partner with athletes who believe in their products and who are role models for society, especially the young, as well as athletes who display  team spirit, philanthropy and  whose social and personal life are regarded as respectable. 

The second half of the Sport Sciences Conference featured a panel discussion titled, ‘Stuff happens! Cost of health care: the case of an athlete’. It was moderated by Journalist, Mr Spencer Darlington with panellists Dr. Kamilah Hylton, Dean, FOSS and Dr. Paula Dawson, Physiatrist, Rehabilitation Institute of the Caribbean. 

Other presentations were delivered by Dr. Anna Law, Orthodontist, Mr Dalton Myers, Sport Administrator, Jamaica Olympic Association and Mr Marlon Gayle, Strength and Conditioning Coach, GC Foster College of Physical Education and Sport and Dr. Donna-Marie Wynter-Adams, Head, Caribbean School of Sport Sciences and Chairman of the Conference Planning Committee.

Molly Rhone, Netball Stalwart Honoured

The Honourable Molly May Rhone, OJ, President of the International Federation of Netball Associations, who received the Order of Jamaica in 2011 for her more than 50 years of dedication to the development of sport in Jamaica, was honoured at the FOSS Conference with the Special Recognition Sport Honoree award.  The citation on Ms Rhone read by Mrs Denise Wisdom, Lecturer, FOSS, lauded her for among other achievements, the establishment of “proper structures, a strategic business plan and a variety of winning programmes, in the game of netball.”  The University also saluted Ms Rhone for her dedication to spreading netball worldwide, inclusive of through programmes such as the exciting Fast 5 Netball World Series initiated in 2009.

For development of Sport in Jamaica:  The Honourable Molly Rhone (2nd left), OJ, President, International Federation of Netball Associations poses with her UTech, Jamaica Citation.  Sharing in the happy occasion are, from left, Professor Stephen Vasciannie, President, UTech, Jamaica, Dr. Kamilah Hylton, Dean, Faculty of Science and Sport and Mr. Denzil Thorpe, Permanent Secretary, Ministry of Culture, Gender Entertainment and Sport.


Michelle Beckford (Mrs.)
Corporate Communications Manager
University of Technology, Jamaica
Telephone: 970-5299