Achievers in Black Excellence - Youth Panel Discussion


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Achievers in Black Excellence - Moderated Youth Panel Discussion

Wednesday, February 15, 2023  | 7 to 9 p.m.
NACCA (449 Eagle Street) | Free Admission - Register for your Zoom link

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This event, moderated by the Newmarket African Caribbean Canadian Association’s Youth Director, Matthew Palomino promises to be truly engaging and features a panel of celebrated past scholarship winners focusing on the theme: The Black Family and Community’s influence on our drive for excellence.  

Meet your Moderator

Moderator Matthew Palomino
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Born in Kingston, Jamaica, and educated at Dr. G.W. Williams SS and subsequently the University of Guelph, Matthew Palomino is the Youth Director of the Newmarket African Caribbean Canadian Association. Immigrating to Canada at age 15 with his family in 2009 he is currently enrolled in Paralegal studies at Seneca College. After the unacceptable spate of Black deaths in Canada and the United States Matthew took it upon himself to become more active in his local Black community. He has a keen interest in racial and class disparities in the legal system particularly as it relates to access to justice issues.

Meet your Youth Panelists

Korrine Edwards

BHM 2023_Headshots-03.pngKorine Edwards embodies the spirit of perseverance. As a young woman living in a community lacking in racial diversity, Korine has successfully overcome external challenges related to her identity and internal challenges her family has faced. At a young age, Korine stepped up and started working to help support her family, and through this developed maturity and understanding unique for her age.

Academically, Korine is consistently named to her school's Honour Roll and averages upwards of 85%, making the Principal's List in grade 11 with an average of 90%. She has received the Marketing Award for achieving the highest grade in her class and is the President of the Student Council.

Despite this overwhelming success, Korine continues to battle stereotypical thoughts from peers and staff, but time and time again ultimately overcomes and proves them wrong. This adversity has helped her develop a skill set that has led to the strong and empowered leader she is today.

Korine attends the Toronto Metropolitan University and pursues studies in Commerce.

Cameron Davis

BHM 2023_Headshots-04.pngCameron Davis uses his voice to empower youth to speak their truth unapologetically.

A former Vice-President of the Black Students Association (BSA) at his high school. In this capacity his mentors have witnessed his exceptional leadership, communication and organizational skills. He is a successful entrepreneur and published writer, with work published in The Globe and Mail, Travel Age West, and Intrepid Travel. His voice has been instrumental in providing insight on the implications of anti-Black racism on Canadian youth.

Cameron has been featured through interviews and panel discussions with the Toronto Raptors, CTV News, City News, Newmarket Today, and the CBC. Most recently, he was selected as one of 20 youth to present at the United Nations General Assembly in Billund, Denmark.

Cameron intends to pursue a law degree in addition to reaching his goal of becoming a global change agent as the Prime Minister of Canada.

Deborah Ojo

BHM 2023_Headshots-02.pngDeborah Ojo is a first-year student at the Sauder School of Business at UBC. She is an executive member of UBC's black student union and has continuously dedicated her time and efforts towards uplifting black communities and working towards equity and diversity. In this work, she curated a website dedicated to helping black students improve their education, and educating faculty on how to integrate BIPOC voices into the education system.

Deborah is a published author in the ISSU and has been a panelist and speaker for events such as the United Speakers Global event, the 2021 WeEvolve conference, and the TEDx Speakers conference. Beyond this, Deborah was the founder of the Diversity Equity and Inclusion council at Holy Trinity School, as well as the leader of the student guild in her senior year. She also served as the leadership prefect for her graduating year and received the Excellence in leadership award, and the Dr. Audrey Turner Award.

Through NACCA, Deborah received the NACCA scholarship and the Wasim Jarrah business excellence award. In her free time, Deborah enjoys reading, watching movies, and listening to music! Her favourite activity is taking runs or walks around the UBC campus. 

Adisa O’Brien-Thompson

BHM 2023_Headshots-02.pngAn undergraduate student at the University of Toronto's St. George Campus majoring in Cognitive Science with a minor in Cinema Studies and Digital Humanities, Adisa O'Brien-Thompson is a recipient of the 2022 NACCA Scholarship awards.

At university, he is very involved in his college (Trinity) and has pushed himself to join clubs including Black Future Lawyers (BFL), Cinema Studies Union (CSU), and the Black Student Union (BSU).

Adisa is also a member of the City of Markham's Black Youth Liaison Committee.

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