Jamaican American attorney Alison Smith, now immediate past president of the Broward County Bar Association (BCBA), Florida, continues to be active in her community while looking out for Jamaican interests.
Smith, who served as the first black woman to be elected president of the BCBA in almost 100 years, in 2022, recently accompanied the Jamaican Women of Florida (JWOF) to the island to present a cheque for US$12,500 to benefit Melody House, a home for abused and abandoned girls in Montego Bay, St James.
JWOF’s President Janice McIntosh handed over the funds to Melody House co-founder, Christine Dexter, saying it would be used towards its new building fund. JWOF has been lending support to the organisation for many years and has plans to increase its participation and support in the future.
The Jamaican Women of Florida (JWOF), Inc, is a Florida Not-For-Profit founded October, 2012 to provide an outlet for Jamaican women in Florida to empower themselves through networking, mentoring, and personal development.
JWOF said its goal is to engage the women to give back to the next generation of young women by assisting in the development of leadership and personal skills to operate in a global environment.
Smith was back in the States in time to join other Jamaican and Caribbean jurists in supporting Jamaican-born Florida Supreme Court Justice Renatha S Francis at her investiture as the 92nd justice of the state’s highest court, in Tallahassee.
Judge Francis was raised in a humble home by her single mother who did not finish high school but started a trucking company and a bar to support her family. Francis was forced to manage the business while still a teen pursuing a double major in international relations and political science at The University of the West Indies (UWI).
After The UWI, she migrated to the United States where she ultimately enrolled in Florida Coastal Law School in Jacksonville to begin her stellar legal career.