Antiguan-born NBA star named Tourism Ambassador

Antiguan-born NBA star Joel Anthony with US Director of Tourism Derede Samuel-Whitlock. (Photo by OBSERVER Media)

ST JOHN’S, Antigua – One day after receiving his NBA Championship ring for the 2011-2012 basketball season Miami Heat center, Joel Anthony was appointed Tourism Ambassador for Antigua & Barbuda.

Born to an Antiguan mother, Erene Anthony, Joel’s accomplishments as a professional basketball player were recognised last Wednesday night at the ninth Annual Independence State Banquet at Sandals Grande Resort and Spa.

Anthony was unable to travel to Antigua & Barbuda to accept the tourism award because the state banquet coincided with the start of the basketball season and a premier match between the Miami Heat and the Boston Celtics.

Anthony sent a videotaped acceptance message, which was played at Wednesday’s banquet.

“I look forward to mentoring the youth, engaging in destination promotions and nation building activities,” Anthony said.  His aunt, Nurse Florence Anthony accepted the award on his behalf.

The NBA star will assist the tourism team and other government agencies along with fellow Tourism Ambassadors actress Marianne Jean-Baptiste, TV host, author and fashion stylist June Ambrose and actress Anna Maria Horsford in marketing the island in the US.

The designation of Tourism Ambassador was developed in 2007 as part of the marketing plan for the US Tourism Office.

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