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Help us celebrate the strength and beauty of our Caribbean Women! Here is a list of some of the most beautiful and famous Caribbean Women………..


Model & Performing Arts.

From: Haiti

Best Known for: Television and Film roles. Co-star of the Jamie Foxx Show.

Bio: Garcelle Beauvais was born in St. Marc, Haiti, her family moved to the United States when she was 7 years of age. She began modeling with Ford Models in New York at 17 years old. After a successful runway career (she is 5’9) she made her first Television appearance on Miami Vice playing a rape victim. Her next role was as Dt. Huxtable’s nurse on The Cosby Show. She also appeared on several other Television series such as The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air, Dream On, Hangin’ with Mr. Cooper and Family Matters. She also guest-starred on HBO’s Arli$$… She is most well known for starring in The Jamie Foxx Show on the Warner Brothers network. She has appeared in films such as Double Take with Orlando Jones and The Wild Wild West with Will Smith. She continues to model appearing in commercials for Diet Coke and American Express. She now has a recurring role on NYPD Blue successfully making the transition from comedy to drama and establishing herself as a serious actress. She is a devoted mother and resides in Los Angeles, Calif. with her son, Oliver. She enjoys movies, playing volleyball and tennis, and walking on the beach in her free time.

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 Naomi Campbell is a name synonymous with the supermodel phenomenon of the late ’80s and 1990s. At the tender age of 15, Campbell was officially signed with a modeling agency, and would soon gain fame as the first black woman to appear on the covers of French and British Vogue, as well as Time magazines. She was blessed with the exotic visage of Jamaican-Chinese heritage. Her startlingly intense eyes and perfect model features earned her much success on the runway and in print, and she would go on to explore numerous realms of the entertainment world including film, television, and pop music throughout her career.

Campbell was born May 22, 1970, in Stratham, London, England, the daughter of Jamaican-born dancer Valerie Morris. Campbell is of Afro-Jamaican descent, as well as of Chinese Jamaican ancestry through her paternal grandmother, who carried the family name, Ming. As a child, she gained a taste of acting, appearing in a film called Quest for Fire. Along with her early start in the modeling profession, she honed her limelight skills by attending the London Academy for Performing Arts.

Her enduring career as a model and background in performance would lead her to the Hollywood scene, where she gained credits alongside numerous big names in film. Her film debut came in 1991 when she appeared as a singer in Cool As Ice. In 1995, Campbell played Kaia in Miami Rhapsody starring Antonio Banderas and Sarah Jessica Parker, and a year later appeared in Spike Lee’s Girl 6. She also made several cameos herself throughout the 1990s, both in films and on television. Making a case for herself as a performer in various television genres, she guest starred on numerous prime-time programs including The Fresh Prince of Bel Air, New York Undercover, and The Cosby Show.

Campbell would branch out into the music business with the release of her album Babywoman in 1995, and gained much attention in Japan over her hit single on the album. In 1996, she was featured in Tony Hickox’s Invasion of Privacy, and in 1997, An Alan Smithee Film: Burn Hollywood Burn, starring Sylvester Stallone, Whoopi Goldberg, and Jackie Chan. In addition, her media credits were rounded off by two books: the best-seller Swan, co-written by Campbell, and Naomi, a collection of photographs spanning the length of the model’s career. 



Miss World 1976, Performing & Recording Artist,

From: Jamaica Best Known for: Miss World 1976, Mother of Bob Marley’s youngest son Damian Marley

Bio: Born in Toronto to a Canadian mother and a Jamaican father, Cindy moved to Kingston at the age of 4 and considers herself a Jamaican. She attended the Catholic school Immaculate Conception. After her parents divorced in 1975 she moved into an apartment at 56 Hope Road and became romantically involved with another famous resident, a singer by the name of Bob Marley. The following year Breakspeare won the Miss World title for Jamaica.

After the Miss World pageant, Breakspeare lived in London for sometime spending much of it with Marley. Marley left Jamaica after being shot first stopping in Nassau, Bahamas where he recorded “Is This Love” which was reportedly inspired by his relationship with Breakspeare. On July 21, 1978, Breakspreare gave birth to Marley youngest son Damian Marley. 

Breakspeare has recorded as a vocalist and performed in the 1993 Reggae Sunsplash concert. She also appeared in the movie Kla$h. She is the founder of Ital Craft a Rastafarian Craft store in Kingston.


Performing Arts

From: Jamaica Best Known for: Star of Broadway, Film and Television. Founder of the Jamerican Film Festival.

Bio: Born on December 30, 1956 in Waterbury, CT to Jamaican Parents Sheryl Lee Ralph has graced the silver screen, the Broadway stage and TV screens and become one of the most recognizable faces from the Caribbean. Sheryl was raised between Long Island, New York and Mandeville Jamaica. Her original intention was to become a doctor, and encounter with a cadaver during a pre-med anatomy course led her to quickly switch her major to English Literature with a minor in theater arts. She graduated Rutgers University at the age of 19 (the youngest female graduate) and was named in the top 10 College women in America by Glamour magazine.

 She made her professional debut in the Sidney Poitier/Bill Cosby comic action yarn “A Piece of the Action” (1977). Shortly after she found herself on the Broadway stage first in the musical “reggae”, but her breakthrough role would come later after earning a Tony-nomination for her portrayal of Deena Jones in the musical Dreamgirls. Lee-Ralph would soon return to film to co-star with Eddie Murphy in the Distinguished Gentleman and with Robert Townsend in The Mighty Quinn that was filmed in Jamaica. She has appeared in several other films including Sister Act 2, The Flintstones and Sister Act 2. In 1991 she won the “Independent Spirit Award” for Best Supporting Actress To Sleep With Anger.

In the 1990’s she found immense popularity on Television of which her role as the mother of Moesha (played by Brandy) in the UPN series also titled Brandy. She has been called “one of the most important AIDS fundraisers in Hollywood”, and she is also the founder of the annual Jamerican Film Festival a four-day festival to showcase International and Jamaican talent called “One of the Top Ten Film Festivals in the World”


Performing Arts

 From: Jamaica

Best Known for Television and Film star best known for roles on Trapper John MD & Coming to America

Bio: Actress Madge Sinclair was born and raised in Kingston, Jamaica. A bright and ambitious student, Sinclair excelled in speech and drama, winning several awards. She put her theatrical aspirations on hold when she married a Jamaican policeman, working for several years as a school teacher. Sinclair married young and had two sons. She taught in Jamaica until she was 30 when she left for New York to be an actress.

The boys stayed in Jamaica with their father, and saw their mother only on visits. In New York she modeled, and acted with the New York Shakespearean Festival and at Joseph Papp’s Public Theatre. In 1968, she moved to New York with her two sons in tow, hoping to launch an acting career. While opportunities were still rather limited for black performers in the late 1960s, she managed to find good, solid stage work with producer Joseph Papp, the Public Theatre and the Brooklyn Academy of Music. She made her film debut as Mrs. Scott in Conrack (1974), then went on to earn an Emmy nomination for her portrayal of Bell in the 1977 TV miniseries Roots. After a brief fling at the TV series with the 1978 Jack Albertson sitcom Grandpa Goes to Washington, Sinclair enjoyed a six-season (1980-86) run as Nurse Ernestine Shoop on Trapper John MD. Afterwards, she appeared on the weekly TV shows, Ohara (1987) and Me and the Boys (1994). In the 1986 Eddie Murphy comedy Coming to America, she was played Eddie’s royal mother opposite James Earl Jones. Madge Sinclair died of leukemia at the age of 57, not long after completing work on the TV special A Century of Women. Her final film role was the voice of the Lion Queen in Disney’s “The Lion King” (1994).


 Performing Arts

Anna Maria Horsford was born and raised in Harlem, New York. Her parents immigrated to the United States from the island nation of Antigua & Barbuda in the West Indies (then a British colony) during the 1940s. Anna grew up not really feeling American but not West Indian either, just somewhere in between. However, she vacationed in the Caribbean, and this stoked her desire to see the world. After high school she went to Stockholm, Sweden, to attend college.

Her mother always knew Anna would be something big because she was very talkative, and kept Anna enrolled in community centers, after-school programs, church events, etc. She auditioned for the New York High School of Performing Arts and was accepted. As she recollects, “My first big break came when I auditioned at the New York Shakespeare Festival.”

Working in many different aspects of show business has allowed her to venture into areas other than acting, such as directing. She also has an Art Institute in upstate New York. Her father was a Garveyite (following the “back-to-Africa” teachings of Marcus Garvey), journeyed to Africa and lived in Liberia for five years. As Anna said, “He clearly taught us to love being black and not be ashamed of being black. We are all warriors and have to work to do.”

Though she is known today for her work in front of the cameras, her first major role in television was as a producer for the PBS show, Soul!, hosted by Ellis Haizlip, which aired between 1967-1973. She is perhaps best known for her role as Thelma Frye on the sitcom Amen, her role as Craig Jones’ mother, Betty Jones, in the 1995 comedy, Friday and the 2002 comedy “Friday After Next”.

Horsford made guest appearances on such sitcoms as The Fresh Prince of Bel-AirSparksMoesha, The Bernie Mac ShowThe ShieldGirlfriends and Everybody Hates Chris. She had a prominent role on the sitcom The Wayans Bros. as “Dee Baxter”. She also appeared on the drama Judging, Amy. More recently, she was seen in the first season of Grey’s Anatomy’. She also directed the television series “Good News” for producer Ed Weinberger and was honored by the Director’s Guild of America as one of the few female African-American directors in the industry.


Marie-Elena John (born 1963) is a Caribbean writer whose first novel, Unburnable, was published in 2006. She was born and raised in Antigua and is a former development specialist of the African Development Foundation, the World Council of Churches’ Program to Combat Racism, and Global Rights (formerly the International Human Rights Law Group), where she worked in support of the pro-democracy movement in Nigeria and in the Democratic Republic of Congo.  She is known especially for her work in the United Nations and at local and national levels to raise awareness about the denial of inheritance rights to women.

Marie-Elena John made history in 1986 as the first Black woman valedictorian of New York’s City College (CCNY). She later earned a Masters of International Affairs from Columbia University, specializing in culture and development in Africa. She lives in Antigua and Washington, D.C with her husband, and their two children, Trey and Elyse.

John Legend & Marie-Elena John

Her literary debut, Unburnable, was named “Best Debut of 2006” by Black Issues Book Review, was short-listed for the 2007 Hurston-Wright Legacy Awards in the Debut Fiction Category, was nominated for the 2008 International IMPAC DUBLIN Award,  and was identified by the Modern Language Association as a new title of note in Caribbean literature.  She was also selected by Book Expo America as one of ten “emerging voices” for 2006, chosen from among the debut novelists reviewed by Publishers Weekly for the 2005-2006 period.



Elizabeth Nunez immigrated to the US from Trinidad after completing high school there. She received a Ph.D. in English from New York University and is a Distinguished Professor at Hunter College, the City University of New York.

Dr. Nunez is the author of eight novels. Boundaries (Akashic Books, 2011), her most recent novel, was selected as a New York Times Editors’ Choice. Anna In-Between (Akashic Books, 2009) received starred reviews from Publishers WeeklyBooklist, and Library Journal and was a New York Times Editors’ Choice. It was selected for the 2010 PEN Oakland Josephine Miles Award for literary excellence. Nunez’s other novels include Prospero’s Daughter (2010 Trinidad and Tobago One Book, One Community selection; New York Times Book Review Editors’ Choice, 2006 Florida Center for the Literary Arts One Book, One Community selection, and 2006 Novel of the Year for Black Issues Book Review); Bruised Hibiscus (American Book Award); Discretion (short-listed for the Hurston/Wright Legacy Award); GraceBeyond the Limbo Silence (Independent Publishers Book Award in Multicultural fiction category); and When Rocks Dance. Most of Nunez’s novels have also been published as audiobooks, and two are in translation, in Spanish and German. Nunez has also written several monographs of literary criticism published in scholarly journals and is co-editor of the anthology, Blue Latitudes: Caribbean Woman Writers at Home and Abroad

She was executive producer for the 2004 Emmy nominated CUNY TV series, Black Writers in America. She was awarded the 2011 Barnes and Noble Poets and Writers, Writers for Writers Award. In 2012, Nunez will be among twelve writers, selected by the Folger Shakespeare Library and the PEN Faulkner Foundation, whose essays will appear in a chapbook celebrating the exhibition in Washington DC on “ Shakespeare’s Sisters.”

Dr. Nunez is a member of several boards, including the Center for Fiction, CUNY TV, and Marian University.


Andrea Blackett (born 24 January 1976 in London) is a Barbadian athlete who specializes in the 400 meters hurdles. She is also an assistant women’s track coach at her alma mater, Rice University.

Blackett graduated from Rice University in 1997 with a bachelor’s degree in managerial studies and Spanish, and she also holds a master’s degree from the University of Houston in hotel management.

As a collegian, Blackett earned a national title as a member of Rice Owls’ indoor 4×400 meter relay squad in 1997. Her highest individual finish came in a 2nd place effort in the 400 meters hurdles in 1997.

Her greatest achievement in athletics is the gold medal she won in the 400 meters hurdles at the 1998 Commonwealth Games in Kuala Lumpur in a games record time.  She also competed in the 2002 Commonwealth Games in Manchester but was unable to retain her title.

Blackett represented Barbados in six IAAF World Championships (1997–2007).  She qualified for the final four times and in 1999 finished fourth. She competed in the 2000 Sydney Olympics, qualifying for the semi-final of the 400m hurdles and she competed in the 400m hurdles at the 2004 Athens Olympics. She has also represented her country at the World Indoor Athletics Championships.

Blackett was also selected in the Bajan team for the 2008 Olympics but was ruled out due to injury and retired from international competition.

Blackett has a personal best of 53.36 in the 400m hurdles,  in Seville which is also a national record for Barbados.  She set the Barbados 100m hurdles record of 13.39 in 2003  in Liège.

Blackett was awarded the 1998 National Sports Personality of the Year award for Barbados for her gold-medal winning achievement in the Commonwealth Games. She was also honored with the Barbados Service Star in November 1998.


Giselle Jeanne Marie Laronde-West (born October 24, 1963, in Port of Spain) won the 1986 Miss World contest, representing Trinidad and Tobago. She became the first woman from Trinidad and Tobago to win the title. The pageant was held in London, United Kingdom.

Giselle was born in Port of Spain but moved with her family to San Fernando at the age of 10. One of four children, she attended St. Peter’s school at Pointe-à-Pierre and St. Francois Girls High School.

After winning the Miss World title she used her prize money to attend the University of London where she completed a degree in Sociology and Communication. Laronde-West was awarded the Chaconia Medal and had a BWIA plane named after her. She is married to Heathcliff West and has two sons. She is the Corporate Communications Manager with Angostura Ltd. To this day she stills lives in Trinidad & Tobago.


Shontelle Layne is better known by her first name. The singer who was born on October 4, 1985, was actually on her way to become a lawyer by attending University of the West Indies. However, she switched to music after being signed to SRC Records, the same label which discovered her fellow Barbadian artist Rihanna. 

After writing a couple of songs for artists in her hometown, she moved to Miami in 2007 and started recording her debut album with Akon. After six months in the works, the album was set to be released in September 2008 but got delayed. Prior to the album release, lead single “T-Shirt” was dropped as a teaser for the whole content of the effort. While it became a moderate hit in the United States by reaching No. 36 on Hot 100, it successfully cracked the Top 10 across the pond.

The first set “Shontelligence” finally made its way out in November the same year. Like the lead single, this album also got average sale number Stateside and performed better in the United Kingdom. From the studio, she reached out to the broader audience by taking it to the road, touring with New Kids On The Block and Beyonce Knowles. …

Born in Barbados to Raymond and Beverley Layne and is the oldest of three sisters. Shontelle has stated that she was highly athletic when she was young, participating in track & field while excelling in school. Shontelle’s aunt, Kim Derrick, a Caribbean singer, encouraged her to pursue singing. While in high school, Shontelle was a member of the Cadet Corps at Combermere where she was a drill sergeant over Rihanna, which sprouted a friendship. Shontelle’s ancestry is of Barbadian, Afro-Cuban and Barbadian, Afro-Cuban, Nigerian, Jamaican.


Miss World 1993

Lisa Hanna was the third Jamaican to win the Miss World title. She won the title in 1993 in Sun City, South Africa at 18 years old. Hanna had a small role in How Stella Got Her Groove Back, and she has hosted the popular Jamaican talk show, Our Voices.

Lisa migrated to the U.S. in 2004 to pursue a career in broadcasting and was a guest presenter on the entertainment show Xtra. During June 2007, she has catapulted into the public’s eyes again when the ruling political party, Peoples National Party announced her as a candidate for the key constituency for the country’s next general election which is constitutionally due in October 2007.

On September 3, 2007, Lisa Hanna went on to win the South Eastern St. Ann constituency by 2678 votes over the JLP’s Peter Fakhourie.Lisa-Hanna-580_22303aLisa-Hanna-Jamaicalisa-hanna-sept19-640x358

February 2012, Lisa was appointed the new Minister of Youth and Culture of Jamaica. During her tenure, she plans to develop and explore more cultural industries as part of the new administration’s strategy for economic growth. Hanna is a communications consultant and has been involved in her country’s politics for quite some time.


Shakira Baksh was born on February 23, 1947, in Guyana (then British Guiana), to a Muslim family of Indian descent. The daughter of a dressmaker, she aimed to follow in the footsteps of her mother and become a fashion designer. It was during her secretary stint that she decided to enter a beauty contest in Guyana that eventually led to a career in modeling.

On January 8, 1973, Shakira married British actor Michael Caine (born March 14, 1933). They met after Caine saw her appearing in a “Maxwell House” coffee commercial and a friend gave him her telephone number. The couple has a daughter, Natasha Haleema.

It was while working as a secretary, Shakira Caine was urged by her boss to participate in the 1967 Miss Guyana contest, where she ended up becoming the winner. She went on to compete at the Miss World contest in London and finished in the third place. Following this, Shakira began to pursue a career as a model.

In 1969, Shakira made her acting debut in “Carry on Again Doctor,” a British comedy film directed by Gerald Thomas and starring Kenneth Williams, Sid James, and Charles Hawtrey. There she had an uncredited role as Scrubba. She resurfaced in 1970 when she was cast as Karl Chambers’ friend on the UK/American comedy/musical film “Tomorrow,” which was directed and written by Val Guest and starred Olivia Newton-John, Benny Thomas, and Vic Cooper.

From 1970 to 1973, Shakira appeared as SHADO Operative on the short-lived action/science fiction television series “UFO,” starring Ed Bishop, Mel Oxley, and Dolores Mantez.

In 1974, Shakira had a small role as the housekeeper in the Freddie Francis directed comedy/horror film “Son of Dracula,” starring Harry Nilsson, Ringo Starr, and Dennis Price.

In 1975, Shakira played the supporting role of Roxanne in the John Huston action/adventure film “The Man Who Would Be King,” starring Sean Connery, Christopher Plummer and her husband, Michael Caine. The film was nominated for four Academy Awards, including Best Writing, Screenplay Adapted From Other Material, Best Film Editing, Best Costume Design and Best Art Direction-Set Decoration.

Elegant Invitations


NICOLE CHANTAL de WEEVER is a woman of many talents: dance, drama, and song. But of the three, the most fulfilling is her first passion – dance. De Weever has danced her way from St Maarten to New York.

She received her training at Motiance Dance in St. Maarten, Netherlands Antilles, and with the Fairfax Ballet Company in Virginia. She is a graduate of New York University’s Tisch School of the Arts where she received her BFA in dance. She has worked with many accomplished choreographers including Ron K. Brown, Bebe Miller, Bill T. Jones and Gus Solomon Jr.

Nicole is among the cast of the Broadway show Fela, a musical based on the life and music of Nigerian performer, composer and activist Fela Anikulapo Kuti. Rated by the New York Times as one of the top ten shows on Broadway in 2009, Fela opened at the Eugene O’Neill Theatre on Broadway in November 2009. It takes its audience into the extravagant, rebellious world of the Afrobeat legend. Using his pioneering music – a blend of jazz, funk, African rhythm and harmonies – Fela explores Kuti’s controversial life as artist, political activist and revolutionary musician. The show is produced by Will Smith, Jada Pinkett Smith, and Jay-Z.

Fela is the 30-year-old de Weever’s biggest professional accomplishment on stage to date. She says appearing in the musical is about much more than the lights and glamour.

“I am honored to be a cast member not just because it’s a hit show on Broadway, but because of what it stands for and the message that it brings. It is not just entertainment. We are educating and changing the face of musical theatre. On stage, we are able to address extremely important political and social issues that are negatively affecting Africa, past and present.”

De Weever has always loved dance, a passion that her parents supported by enrolling her in the Motiance Dance School in St Maarten, where ballet was her forte.

“Dancing has always been a part of my life, from since I was a young girl. I have always been very passionate about movement, in general, even on a social level, and beyond the room of a dance class or studio. Expressing myself without words had always moved me.”

She moved to the US in 1995 and went to high school in Virginia before moving on to New York University’s Tisch School of the Arts and Fairfax Ballet in Virginia. She lives in Harlem, New York.


Jennifer Hosten was born and raised in St. George’s, Grenada. She completed her education in London, studied broadcasting with the BBC and worked for its Caribbean service before becoming a flight attendant. 

In 1970 Ms. Hosten then 22 won the Miss World Title, her enthronement as Miss World was clouded in controversy fueled by racial tensions. Her runner-up was Miss South Africa making it the first time ever in an international pageant that both winner and runner-up were black. An immediate and distasteful uproar began with the television audience booing as if in an international soccer match. The controversy was further inflamed by the presence of the Grenada’s eccentric Prime Minister, Sir Eric Gairy, on the judging panel.

Despite the controversy surrounding her victory Jennifer Hosten was acclaimed in Grenada as a national heroine, and less than seven months later, in June 1971, six commemorative stamps were printed in her honor.

During Christmas 1970, Jennifer joined Bob Hope on his annual tour of U.S. overseas army camps and sang her way through “Anything You Can Do I Can Do Better” with Hope before thousands of American servicemen. She also appeared with Liberace in Australia and made personal appearances all over the world.

After her year of office, Jennifer became a customer relations officer with Air Canada, married that airline’s executive David Craig and they lived in Bermuda until 1973, when they took up residence in Ontario, Canada.

In August 1978, Jennifer Hosten Craig was appointed High Commissioner to Canada from Grenada, in November 1978, she was a special guest at the Miss World pageant. In 1992 Edwin Mellen Press published an academic study by Jennifer Hosten Craig titled The Effect of a North American Free Trade Agreement on the Commonwealth Caribbean. She is presently involved in a project that proposes to create a worldwide television station to give a voice to those not commonly heard.


Janelle Penny Commissiong, a native of Trinidad and Tobago, was born in June 1953, migrated to the United States at the age of 13, and returned to Port-of-Spain, Trinidad in 1976. After winning the Miss Trinidad title, she went on to be crowned Miss Universe 1977 in Santo Domingo, Dominican Republic. She was the first woman from the Caribbean and the first woman of African ancestry to be crowned Miss Universe. Commissiong is the daughter of a Venezuelan mother and a Trinidadian father. In 1976, just before winning the Miss Universe crown, she studied fashion at the Fashion Institute of Technology in New York City.

During the Miss Universe pageant, Commissiong was a very popular contestant who won the photogenic competition in the pageant. Nonetheless, she was not considered the favorite to win the pageant. Most observers claimed Miss Austria, Eva Maria Duringer, was the odds-on favorite to take the crown. Duringer finished as 1st runner-up.

During her reign (1977-1978) Commissiong was a public advocate for black rights in nations where people of African ancestry were minorities, and she campaigned for world peace. In 1977, Commissiong was awarded the Trinity Cross, Trinidad and Tobago’s highest honor. Three postage stamps were also issued in her honor by her country. In 1978, Commissiong’s successor was Margaret Gardnier, Miss South Africa. For many it was tragically ironic to see the first Miss Universe of African ancestry crowning a woman from a nation that was internationally known for its racial injustice toward black people.

As the first black Miss Universe, Commissiong attracted more than normal international attention. For the U.S. to Asian media especially she was a particularly interesting topic. She was also in demand around the globe as a speaker. Much of the interest continued after her reign. Soon after she relinquished the crown in 1978, Joaquin Balaguer, President of the Dominican Republic, invited her to interview him in the National Palace. As she did during her tenure as Miss Universe, she continued to visit many African, Asian, and European nations as well as the United States.

After her reign ended Commissiong married Brian Bowen, the founder of Bowen Marine, a Trinidadian pleasure boat manufacturing company. When her husband died in an accident in 1989 she headed the company for a brief period. She remarried for a second time to Alwin Chow, another Trinidad businessmen and they adopted a daughter, Sasha.


Anya Ayoung-Chee (born Oct. 17, 1981) is Miss Trinidad and Tobago Universe 2008 and was a contestant in the Miss Universe 2008 pageant, and also the winner of Project Runway’s ninth season in 2011

Anya Ayoung-Chee was born to Trinidadian parents in New York City but moved to Trinidad at the age of two, she therefore holds dual Trinidadian and American citizenship.  She is the only daughter in a family of eight. From an early age she pursued classical ballet training. However it was during her attendance at all girls secondary school St. Joseph’s Convent (Port of Spain) that she became passionate about art and design. She continued her education in London and New York, gaining experience in Graphic and Interior Design.

Anya was a contestant on Season 9 of the American television show Project Runway. Despite learning to sew a few months before the show began,  she placed in at least the top three of most of the challenges, and eventually won the competition on October 27th 2011.

Through winning the competition, Anya earned $100,000 from L’Oreal Paris to begin her own line, Pilar. Not only that, she also was featured in a fashion spread in Marie Claire and received a $50,000 technology suite by HP and Intel for the chance to design and sell merchandise, as well as a partnership with Piperlime.com. Anya was also voted the fan favorite for a Twitter contest and received another $10,000.


 Yendi Phillipps (born September 8, 1985) is the winner of the Miss Jamaica World 2007 beauty pageant, as well as the 2010 Miss Jamaica Universe pageant. She is of Indo and Afro Caribbean descent. She credits her mother, who died when she was younger for her Confidence and Drive and dedicated her win to her. She represented Jamaica at the Miss World 2007 contest held in Sanya, China and at Miss Universe 2010 held at the Mandalay Bay Resort and Casino, Las Vegas, Nevada, U.S. on August 23, 2010, where she finished as the first runner up to Ximena Navarrete of Mexico. After Miss Universe Phillipps has appeared in commercials for brands such as Toyota and Pepsi.

She holds a bachelor’s degree of fine arts with a concentration in dance from the State University of New York at Brockport and a Master’s degree in Recreation and Leisure Management. She attended St. Andrew High School for Girls in Kingston, Jamaica. Phillipps previously hosted Digicel Rising Stars. She has also appeared in publications such as Skywritings magazine, Caribbean Beat magazine, Woman & Home, Fair Lady, Buzz, Collage, Soul, Basia and Ocean Style.


  1. With all the artists, educators and women of other gendre who should be more memorable than models. Where are they?

  2. I love this. Excellent work. I think you may have left out Cicely Tyson who is also of Caribbean descent. I believe Nevis?

    Susan Taylor, former editor of Essence, is also Caribbean. Trinidadian?
    And the biggest omission that should not occur is Heather Headley, an RandB artist, singer songwriter and Trinidadian from Barataria.

    And the Trini woman who just won the food wars who lives in DC and has a cupcake shop. I find this to be dominated a lot by models and Miss Universes.

  3. This represents the qualities and high standard of women that represents various parts of the caribbean, their individual role/position in representing their individual countries at international level demonstrates their individual talent and level of professional, these womenare ambassadors, and role models for the future generation. Well done.

  4. Wow, I never knew that there were so many beautiful and smart Caribbean/ West Indian women out there. As a Canadian born of Trindadian decent, it just makes me so proud reading these story about these fine women. Especially the women that came from trinidad and tobago. Amazing…

  5. I do not see Annemarie braafheid, first caribbean Black woman from Curacao to place as first finalist in Miss universe in the U.S.A. in 1968…..
    while the civil war or the rights for black people was going on in the U.S.A.

    As a matter of fact she was robbed from the crown…because she was black!

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