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Texas: Dr. Alusine Jalloh, four others, clinch awards

18 January 2017 at 09:01 | 2137 views

By Sanpha Sesay, PV Special Correspondent, Dallas, Texas.

The relevance of Sierra Leoneans’ knowledge for the challenges facing our country was fairly accentuated by Professor Dr. Alusine Jalloh in an exclusive Sierra Leonean community get-together in Dallas on January 14, 2017.

The community media award ceremony that was championed by this writer and others was held to celebrate the end of the year 2016 and the beginning of 2017 by the Association of Sierra Leonean Organizations in Texas (ASLOT. It was a new phenomenon when the public relations officer of ASLOT, my humble self, acted on the idea to recognize community members in the Dallas Fort-worth area for their good work.

The 2016 community awards focus on community members and their organizations that have embedded their vision into the fabric of their organization’s operation and strive to accomplish their goals in consonance with our country’s aspirations.

After careful consideration of a pool of several deserving individuals, five distinguished members won the 2016 community media awards.

Dr. Alusine Jalloh, ( left) receiving his award from Sanpha Sesay.

The recipients of the awards are:

- Dr. Alusine Jalloh, a professor at the University of Arlington in Texas. He won the citizenship award for his voluntary service in the community here at Dallas Fort Worth, and his vision to render faithful, conscious and valuable service in his substantial commitment to improve education in Sierra Leone.

- Dr. Foday Christian Sesay won what the committee described as the Humanitarian award” because of his belief that helping the less fortunate and projecting hope to ensure his work is addressing the real needs in our country could make him happy. Dr. Sesay is the Executive Director for the Center for the Promotion of Inclusive Education. He closed the year 2016 by distributing over one hundred scholarships to young girl students in northern Sierra Leone.

- The award for diversity at this time was won by the president of Tegloma, Ms. Elizabeth Bockarie. By virtue of her profession as a Master of Social Worker (MSW) degree holder, she has the obligation to break the tribal barrier by trying to influence her organization to uphold the values of diversity. She was awarded for her unselfish devotion to the principle of diversity and her effort to inspire the community to come together to work on a common purpose. She also played a pivotal role as president of Tegloma Dallas chapter, together with TEGLOMA Federation in their nationwide project to give scholarships to students in Sierra Leone.

Dr. Alie Koroma receiving his award.

- Dr. Alie Patrick Koroma, ASLOT Secretary General and an Adjunct Instructor at Tarrant County College clinched the overall community leadership award. The community believes that Dr. Koroma‘s record of service to the community equals his devotion to encourage young students to education. The award committee believes that Dr. Koroma is endowed with relentless courage, vision, and ability with profound harmonious character; hence the over-all community leadership goes to him.

- The final award was honored to Pastor Sylvanus Chapman. The award was named as Spiritual Leadership award. It is for Pastor Chapman’s inspiration, devotion, and dedication to unite the Sierra Leone Churches that are emerging in the metropolitan area of Dallas Fort-worth in Texas. Pastor Chapman is an Associate pastor at Ebenezer Methodist Church in Mesquite. He is serving as a mentor to young Sierra Leoneans. He spearheaded the 2016 Independence Thanksgiving service in his church. The committee for this award therefore acknowledged Pastor Chapman’s contribution to the common objectives of biblical enlightenment and thinking.

Acknowledging his award, Dr. Jalloh took it as an opportunity to advise to all Sierra Leoneans about the importance of patriotic unity in diversity, and how we can make a better choice of our leaders.

" We need leaders who have the power of collaboration, ability and fortitude with knowledge of life, a heart and mind imbued with passion for development," he said.

Dr. Jalloh re-emphasized the importance of diversity and collaboration, noting that in collaboration, there is an increase in the understanding of diverse perspectives with the development of higher-level thinking to effect positive change. He added that there are some significant reasons why character is worth knowing about persons we follow and cannot be left out of the leadership equation. Therefore, persons having the vision of embracing diversity practice and who have a positive attitude of collaboration are some of the examples he cited to look into before making our choices.

Honourable Patrick Jackson

The event ended with closing remarks by Honorable Mr. Patrick Jackson, the Honorary Consul of Sierra Leone inTexas and the surrounding states. He is also one of the founders of ASLOT. The two Executive members of ASLOT, Honorable Jackson and Dr. Koroma explained to the audience the objectives of the organization and what it has accomplished in the previous years.

The Association of Sierra Leonean Organization in Texas (ASLOT) is to organize Sierra Leoneans in the State of Texas into a more loving and cohesive community, while employing interdependence together with non-Sierra Leoneans to support and promote sustainable growth in healthcare, education, infrastructure, agriculture, and social empowerment to benefit the people of Sierra Leone.