In 1996, the Green Valley Festival was officially birthed and became the festival for the Lodge Village through to Canada Estate communities but which was open to persons across the island and the federation.
According to Benjamin, who spoke with MiyVue.com, the festival was birthed with Mr. Creighton Pencheon as the Chairperson and when he took up office at the Department of Culture, he indicated that he would be giving up the chairmanship, a position which Benjamin took having the support of the other committee members.
“I have decided that this year is my last as the Chairman of the Green Valley Committee. I have been on the committee since its inception and that was 15 years ago. I worked as the person responsible for street activities and troupes for about four years, and since then I have functioned as Chairperson of the festival committee. I took over from Mr. Creighton Pencheon who was the first Chairperson.”
Mr. Benjamin said his decision to demit that position was made sometime ago; specifically he had decided that after the hosting of the 15th annual festival, he would relinquish that post.
“I decided that by the 15th anniversary, I would retire as Chairperson and that is because I have been the chairman for so many years and I think that it is time for someone else to take up the mantle as chairperson. One man doesn’t have all the ideas and there are so many persons in the area from Lodge Village to Canada Estate who are leaders…and I saying that we could find someone or some persons who would be able to take on the mantle as Chair.”
The outgoing Chairman said he is confident that another Chairperson would be appointed to head the committee. He noted that while he will no longer be chair of the committee, he will be available to provide assistance or advice whenever it is needed.
His advice to the incoming chairperson is to always give a listening ear to all, concerning the advancement of the festival.
“I would be there to give whatever guidance they would need and to assist in anyway. My advice to them would be, that they need to work with the people in the community and they must listen to persons. There are persons with different ideas but they must listen to everyone and let the final decision be made by you and your committee.”