To: Daily Herald From: Brenda Carty Date: February 14, 2005
Making the presentation was Managing Director, Joseph Brice who said that he has been aware of the sterling efforts of Mitchelle Lake to develop a first rate tennis facility in Anguilla. He made the presentation on behalf of himself and staff noting that it was easy to do as they believe in making the facility available for children. He said that with first class facilities Anguilla should be able to soon have a tennis star to appear internationally. He said the donation was to show that they care for the youth of the island and he invites other businesses to do the same.
Vice President of the ATA, Millie Hodge thanked Brice for the generous contribution. She said initial pledges were made in December by Edgar Bronfman and Robert Johnson and that she hopes others will take up the challenge and make a commitment. There are different levels of pledges that can be made from US$5000 the Love pledge, the US$10,000 pledge the Contributing pledge, the Advantage pledge of $25,000 and the Grand Slam pledge of $50,000.
To: Daily Herald From: Brenda Carty Date: January 27, 2005
Slap said, "I am pleased to support the noble efforts of Mitchelle Lake towards the development of children through the sport of tennis. His commitment to the project and children over the past ten years has prompted me to support this cause. I trust that the people will continue to support this worthwhile endeavour."
Lake said that the project is coming about through generous donations and the children will certainly reap the benefits of the new van. "I truly thank Mr Slap on behalf of the Anguillian community for his generous contribution," Lake said. He also thanked Sheila Haskins of Tropical Shipping for her assistance in getting the van to Anguilla.
Lake says that the construction of the tennis facility at Blowing Point is proceeding well and he thanks the many persons who have been involved in making it happen. He stated that recently Bob Johnson of BET and Edgar Bronfman of Warner Music Group agreed to match US$500,000 against the pledge commitments of the Anguillian community over the next five years.
To: Daily Herald From: Brenda Carty Date: December 29, 2004
Bronfman told the many persons attending the reception that he first came to Anguilla fourteen years ago and owns a home on the island. He wants to give back and invest in the future of the island and is happy to assist along with Johnson who also owns a home here. He noted that tennis encourages self esteem and discipline and he is pleased to see Mitchelle Lake's dream of a tennis facility come alive.
The Governor, Alan Huckle, spoke of Lake's vision to build the Tennis Academy and he is pleased to know that it is a community effort with a community spirit behind the venture. He noted that the 'Buy a Brick' campaign enables everyone to contribute and that the project will be a tremendous one for the island.
Support for the tennis programme was pledged from Government by Permanent Secretary, Marcel Fahie. He said that the ATA goes beyond the structure that is being built and stressed the importance of the tennis programmes for the children.
Lake said he hopes the ATA can meet the challenge of raising US$ 500,000 and that already $200,000 has been pledged locally. He thanked all those who have supported the project and the contractor Jeff Richardson and Project Manager Hugo Rey for all their work since the groundbreaking one year ago. He said he is calling on all Anguillians to embrace the project and match the challenge.
Following the remarks a short advert film on the ATA by Travis Productions was shown to the guests and was very well received. It is to be used on various networks in the USA and the
ANGUILLA-The Anguilla Tennis Academy (ATA) world class facility to be built at Blowing Point is a dream of Mitchelle Lake. Chairing the groundbreaking ceremony for the facility on Monday December 29, Brent Davis referred to the "power of a dream" and Lake's ability with his charm and persuasiveness to see it through.
The Governor Peter Johnstone noted that 2003 has been very significant for sport in Anguilla with the golf course project starting, the Anguilla Golf Association and the tennis facility of the ATA. He suggested that everyone should be part of the project, whether they play tennis or not, by purchasing a brick.
Speaking on behalf of the Chief Minister, Osbourne Fleming who was unable to attend, Marcel Fahie Permanent Secretary in the Ministry of Finance says the new facility will bring diversity to tourism. He said that the Chief Minister and Ministers of Government are fully behind the project and the rest of the Caribbean is observing what we are doing. He thanked all for coming and urged that everyone continues to support the project.
The Director of Sports, Alkins Rogers, expressed delight that sponsors have come forward and hopes others will follow. He stressed that the facility must be the best for our young people and wished the ATA all the best.
Architect of the project, Myron Goldfinger who is providing the design and drawings free of cost said that he is gratified and proud to assist. He referred to his associate architect Jeff Taylor and also his wife June who will be designing the interior of the facility.
Special recognition was given to Eric and Isabel Martineau who from the early 1960s have influenced tennis in Anguilla and in fact taught Mitch Lake to play the game and basic discipline and life skills. CEO of National Bank of Anguilla, Valentine Banks said that Mitch is giving back to people like Martineau and to Bob Johnson who assisted him in his college education. He also said that the Bank is proud to assist in providing the facility.
Timothy Hodge, Director of Social Security and Preston Bryan Managing Director of the Caribbean Commercial Bank, also major sponsors of the facility spoke of the importance of the new facility and commended Mitch and his Board for their vision and foresight.
Mitch Lake gave the feature address and welcomed everyone. He said he is gratified by the breadth of support for the ATA and that it is a model of what can be accomplished when everyone works together. He praised the National Bank, the Caribbean Commercial Bank and the Social Security Board who together have donated US$235,000 for the project. He also thanked Myron Goldfinger, Walton Fleming, KPMG, Caribbean Juris Chambers and the many other persons who have assisted him. He also mentioned Eric and Isobel Martineau and assured them that the legacy they started will be continued at the new facility. He praised Wilma and Gloria Proctor and Dana Ruan who have continued tennis training throughout the year for several years.
"This is a project of the people and its success depends on our ability to work together," Lake said. "I am calling on all to work together to create a world class facility that will be a symbol of national pride. The children are a third of our population and all of our future," he concluded.
The programme included steel pan renditions by Dumpa, a song "Something Inside So Strong", prayers by Pastor Ambrose Richardson and Pastor Phillip Gumbs and the ground breaking by the sponsors and architect. In addition to the speakers already mentioned, in attendance was the Deputy Governor Mark Capes and Mrs Capes, Minister of Infrastructure, Kenneth Harrigan and Parliamentary Secretary Samuel Connor.