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Diasporian News of Thursday, 7 February 2013

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African Diaspora World Tourism Awards in Atlanta

African Diaspora World Tourism Awards and Travel Expo to be Held in Atlanta

The online magazine AfricanDiasporaTourism.com (ADT) in association with the AD King Foundation will present the African Diaspora World Tourism Awards & Travel Show Expo in Atlanta, Ga. (USA) on April 26-28, 2013. The three-day event will also include a Travel Show Expo, an Africana Culture Performances Extravaganza, a Hall of Fame Luncheon and Visit Africa and Caribbean luncheons, in addition to the awards ceremony.

The official gala awards ceremony recognizing people who have made unique and significant contributions in the fields of black culture and heritage tourism will take place at the Atlanta Airport Marriott on Saturday April 27th beginning with a reception at 6 pm. Noted broadcast journalist Monica Kaufman Pearson is host for the awards gala.

The African Diaspora World Tourism Awards ceremony will recognize professionals for outstanding services as tour operators, travel planners, culture and heritage scholars, tourism ministers and CEO'S, and other professionals in travel. We will pay tribute to politicians, government officials, and people of all races who have contributed to the development and promotion of culture and heritage tourism in the places of the African Diaspora worldwide. Awards will also be given to destinations, historic sites, organizations, institutions and corporations.

In addition to giving out awards at the ceremony, AfricanDiasporaTourism.com will honour 100 leaders in the ‘Hall of Fame’ who have made legendary contributions to the field of black culture and heritage in such a way as to significantly influence tourism. These include notables like Congressman John Lewis, Mr. And Ms. Muhammad Ali, Ms. Coretta King, Danny Glover, Dr. Julius Garvey, Dr. Asa Hilliard, Bob and Rita Marley, former Senegalese president Abdoulaye Wade, former Ambassador Andy Young, Tavis Smiley, Dr. Maulana Karenga, Fela Anikulapo-Kuti, Dr. Jean Ping and many others from around the world. The Hall of Fame luncheon honoring these legends will be earlier that day at noon.

On Friday the day before, there will be a “Visit Africa” Luncheon at noon where destinations from the Motherland will provide information about touring their countries. The Africana Extravaganza, consisting of cultural performances, artistic exhibits and Diasporic cuisines will happen that evening at 7 PM. The Travel Show Expo, which will take place on both Friday and Saturday, will allow tourism destinations, corporations and vendors of the hospitality industry to showcase and promote their products. The Caribbean Brunch, where you can learn about visiting islands of the Caribbean will take place on Sunday morning right before the wrap-up meeting to adjourn.

ADT publications editor Kitty J. Pope, who is the founder/ director and producer of this event, says that an award ceremony of this type is needed because we have shining stars who have worked hard to push forth agendas related to black culture and heritage tourism. "There is the annual World Travel Awards that is the 'Oscars' of the travel industry; but because of its uniqueness, I feel that a separate, special event is needed for the culture and heritage contributions of people of African descent," says Pope.

Dr. Babs Onabanjo, co-founder and CEO of the AD King Foundation, is the executive producer of this event who says that he is glad to help present an event that will bring people from Africa and people of African descent from around the world together. “Dignitaries, notables, travel industry experts and professionals will be able to come together for all types of networking opportunities.”

“The awards ceremony is dedicated to the late great Marcus Garvey and we are happy to announce that his son Dr. Julius Garvey will participate as a presenter,” says Pope. “The Africana Extravaganza and the Travel Show Expo was added on to this event because of the overwhelming response from people around the world. “Destinations, especially African countries, wanted to be a part of this, and cultural performers and artists also wanted to participate. So we have made this into a three-day event”, says Pope. “The Travel Show Expo is the first of its kind to place emphasis on black heritage sites and trails worldwide in order to increase visitation and tourism.” Our Africana Extravaganza will be hosted by acclaimed artist and sculptor Donald Brown from Great Britain, and it will be headlined by Ron Bobb- Semple, who will do a re-enactment of Marcus Garvey, and Bob Marley’s granddaughter Donisha will do spoken word.

“This will be a most historical and exciting three-day event because we are bringing all things related to black cultural and heritage tourism under one roof,” says Pope.

For registration and more information, visit www.ADWT-Awards.com. Discounted tables are available for special seating at the Awards Ceremony for organizations, associations and corporations. Travel Show Expo booths are available for businesses and vendors. You may also call (404) 549-7215 or (404) 784-4095 for details.

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