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MPE CARIBBEAN REPORT NEWSLETTER – April 1, 2024 – American to fly DFW-GCM daily this winter

The MPE Caribbean Report Newsletter offers travel, tourism, Caribbean and global news weekly. To share stories, information or intelligence, contact us at [email protected].

APRIL 1, 2024

Easter blessings

Warm Easter Monday greetings to all readers of the MPE Caribbean Report! Let’s embrace this season of hope and renewal to refresh, revive and reflect on the transformative blessings and resurrection power of the Lord which Easter brings to our lives and communities across the region and the Diaspora.

American to fly DFW-GCM daily this winter

The Cayman Islands and AA teams at Routes Americas in Bogotá last month. Pictured l-r are Bianca Moore Downey; Gary Hendricks-Dominguez; Director of Tourism Rosa Harris; Michael Eng and Brandon Carpenter (American Airlines); Ayanna Victorin; and Omar Hashmi.

Starting December 5, 2024, travelers from Dallas can look forward to daily nonstop service from Dallas Fort Worth International Airport to Grand Cayman on American Airlines. This seasonal service responds to the surging demand for the Cayman Islands during this peak period and will run through early April 2025.

“Dallas has always been an important market for the Cayman Islands and the increase to daily service is a strong indicator that Cayman remains a preferred destination for Texans. We value American Airlines’ partnership and the confidence they have in the destination,” said Director of Tourism, Rosa Harris.

“We look forward to welcoming new and repeat visitors from Dallas to enjoy what the Cayman Islands has to offer from ringing in the new year on Seven Mile Beach, enjoying Cayman Cookout in January or traveling for a romantic getaway or family vacation,” she added.

Marketplace Memory

The eagerly awaited 2024 Caribbean Hotel and Tourism Association (CHTA) Caribbean Travel Marketplace is just around the corner, scheduled for May 20-23 in Montego Bay, Jamaica. As excitement builds for this year’s gathering, we look back at the 2019 event, where Jamaica’s Minister of Tourism Edmund Bartlett (left) and CHTA’s then-Director General Frank Comito were seen greeting each other at the Montego Bay Convention Centre, with Rico Louw of STR looking on. For additional information about the upcoming meeting, visit

Quotable Caribbean

“With its dramatic blues and incredible beauty, the Caribbean sea was meant to be explored. But at more than a million square miles, it was also meant to be discovered. Sandals Saint Vincent unveils a little-known wonder we are proud to bring forward, not only for its show-stopping beauty but for the warmth and grace of its people. There is a joy here that pulses throughout and beyond 32 incredible islands. Sandals Saint Vincent was designed to honor that spirit, encouraging carefree exploration, pampered relaxation, and deep connection.” – Adam Stewart, Executive Chairman, Sandals Resorts International

Former USVI Congresswoman to be honored

Dr. Donna Christensen

The Virgin Islands Democratic Party, St. Croix District, is set to honor former U.S. Congresswoman Dr. Donna Christensen with the Lifetime Award. 

The accolade, acknowledging Christensen’s lifelong commitment to public service and her significant contributions to improving the community of the Virgin Islands, will be presented at a ceremony on Tuesday, April 2, at The Buccaneer Beach and Golf Resort. The event will feature former Majority Whip, Congressman Jim Clyburn from South Carolina, as the guest speaker.

Teri Helenese, the U.S. Virgin Islands Director for State-Federal Relations and the Washington Representative for the USVI government, lauded Christensen’s pioneering role as the first female medical doctor in Congress. Over a career that spans more than five decades, Christensen has broken new ground and overcome obstacles, according to Helenese. Her service began in the medical field, working in emergency rooms and maternity wards, significantly impacting the lives of the island’s residents. 

“Congresswoman Christensen’s advocacy extended to environmental conservation, education, and social justice, leaving an indelible mark on her community and our nation as a whole,” Helenese stated, noting that the Congresswoman’s enduring impact will continue to motivate and direct the paths of women in the Virgin Islands, the Caribbean, and beyond for many years.

Celebrating women of the U.S. Virgin Islands – Part Three

In part three of this edition, we highlight the Virgin Islands 175th Emancipation Commemoration Committee’s focus on two more noteworthy Virgin Islands women who are making their mark and serving their community.

Anise Hodge – Public Service Excellence: Anise Hodge exemplifies leadership and dedication in public administration within the United States Virgin Islands. As Deputy Executive Director at the Virgin Islands Port Authority, Hodge brings over three decades of experience in financial, managerial and executive roles, contributing significantly to governmental efficiency and public welfare. Holding an MPA from Syracuse University and a BA from Hampton University, she has implemented critical financial policies, overseen disaster recovery, and managed federal grants. Her commitment to community service shines through her involvement with the American Red Cross of the Virgin Islands, various sororities, and educational boards, highlighting her dedication to enriching her community.

Jennifer Matarangas-King – Visionary in Communications: Jennifer Matarangas-King is a transformative leader in the telecommunications industry of the U.S. Virgin Islands, particularly with her long-standing tenure at Viya. With a career that spans over 25 years, she has held key positions that have propelled the company forward, including President and General Manager of Innovative Cable TV. Matarangas-King’s expertise in public relations, governmental affairs, and strategic planning has been pivotal. A Smith College and Howard University alumna, her academic excellence and leadership extend into community service, including contributions to the St. Croix Foundation for Community Development and Junior Achievement of the Virgin Islands.

Anise Hodge and Jennifer Matarangas-King’s contributions to public administration and telecommunications, respectively, and their dedicated service and leadership have made lasting impacts on their communities in the U.S. Virgin Islands.

Medical Moment

International Nurses Day is May 12, the birthday of Florence Nightingale, an English social reformer considered the founder of modern nursing.

This year’s theme: “Our Nurses. Our Future. The Economic Power of Care.” highlights the significant economic and societal advantages of strategic investment in nursing.

Dr. Pamela Cipriano, President of the International Council of Nurses, emphasized the need for a change ahead of this occasion: “We believe now is the time for a shift in perspective. We have seen time and again how financial crises often lead to budgetary restrictions in health care, typically at the expense of nursing services.”

During the observance, organizers will share a special report on the economic impact of care.


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