Caribbean tech expert to receive lifetime achievement award
Caribbean-based technology expert Bevil Wooding wil be the 2013 recipient of a Lifetime Achievement Award from The Latin American and Caribbean Internet Addresses Registry (LACNIC), the organisation has announced.
Established in 2009, the LACNIC Award honours people who have contributed significantly to the development of the Internet and the Information Society in Latin America and the Caribbean.
"This was completely unexpected. It is an honour to receive this award from LACNIC. This strengthens my resolve to continue working to ensure that people are empowered to take advantage of technology for the development and benefit of our region," Wooding said.
A pioneer in the development of technology solutions and educational resources, Wooding wears many hats in his work across the region and around the world, according to a press release. As an Internet Strategist and Caribbean Outreach Manger for the US-based research non-profit, Packet Clearing House, he reportedly has been the leading advocate for the proliferation of Internet Exchange Points (IXPs) in the Caribbean, with his efforts leading to the establishment of IXPs in Grenada, the British Virgin Islands, Dominica and Barbados.
He is also the Chief Knowledge Officer at Congress WBN, a Caribbean-based international non-profit operating in over 80 countries. He leads the organizations global technical team and he has pioneered the development of Internet streaming and software applications that are now used around the world.
Wooding in 2012 collaborated with the Saint Lucia National Youth Council to deliver Saint Lucia's first ever national mobile app creation workshop. He also works with governments, private sector and NOGs across the region to provide training and educational resources for creating digital content, particularly for youth and young entrepreneurs.
More recently he has worked with the Caribbean Examination Council (CXC) to develop the Caribbean's first-ever Digital Media syllabus. He was also instrumental in creating CXCs first ever fully digital syllabus orientation training, the release said.
The tech expert is also one of the co-architects and the Programme Director of the Caribbean Telecommunications Union's Caribbean ICT Roadshow. Through the CTU's Roadshow he has helped communities and governments across the region understand issues ranging from Internet infrastructure and broadband access in the Caribbean to cybersecurity and the impact of social media on parenting and education.
Reflecting on the award, Wooding said, "In spite of the many challenges, I remain convinced that our region has the creativity, and the capacity to leverage the Internet and related technologies to address our unique challenges, but also to create unique opportunities for our communities, businesses and society. I believe we can and will take our rightful place in the global internet society."
A virtual technology ambassador, Wooding regularly represents the interests of the region at international fora. He has also come in for wide praise for his innovative initiatives, including TechLink, iCAN Mobile App Development and eBook Publishing workshops, to introduce young people to digital content creation through his BrightPath Foundation, a technology education non-profit.
"His efforts have been distinguished by a deliberate commitment to collaboration and an emphasis on linking building regional communities," said Bernadette Lewis, Secretary-General of the Caribbean Telecommunications Union. Lewis was on the panel of judges for the award, alongside noted Internet experts such as Ida Holz, Rafael Ibarra, Carlos A. Afonso and Rodrigo de la Parra.
Wooding credits the partnerships he has forged as one of the main factors behind the success of his achievements, sharing, "It is an honour to have the support and friendship of so many incredibly talented and extremely committed individuals and organisations from the region and across the world."
In 2010, he was appointed by the Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers (ICANN) as one of seven Internet gatekeepers, called Trusted Community Representatives (TCRs), and assigned a smart-card with part of a special code used secure domain names. He is also a founding member of the Caribbean Network Operators Group (CaribNOG) and led the volunteer-based organization to become into an internationally recognized and trusted community of computer network operators and technical stakeholders.
LACNIC is an international, non-government organization established in Uruguay in 2002 and is responsible for assigning and administrating Internet numbering resources for Latin America and the Caribbean. The 2013 Lifetime Achievement Award will be presented during the LACNIC 21 meeting, to be held on 4-9 May in Cancun, Mexico.