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"GIS Spotlight" Scores Again

Winning plaques match winning smiles: GIS Marketing and Communications' video production specialists Karl Nyyossonen (L) and Greg Parashak, with <em>GIS Spotlight</em> producer/host Heather Hopson

Government Information Services Marketing and Communications' programme, GIS Spotlight has once again proved it is a winner.

The Cayman Islands Government's weekly television programme grabbed gold twice in the Caribbean Broadcasting Union's (CBU) 2009 regional media competition. These awards came in the wake of the top honours that GIS Spotlight already earned from the Pan American Health Organisation (PAHO).

Earning best news feature in the television category is Building Brighter Futures Behind Bars. It underscores Cayman's prisons' attempts to equip inmates with usable skills to better their chances of success after release.

GIS Spotlight producer Heather Hopson effectively uses footage provided by video production specialists Karl Nyyossonen and Greg Parashak to reveal a crucial step in prisoner rehabilitation.

"Obviously, inmates are convicted of crimes and get locked up but the system doesn't throw away the key," Ms Hopson remarked. "Instead, it opens a doorway to education. So we decided to have our feature highlight the prison's construction certification programme, which not only builds structures, but confidence and self-esteem as well."

She explained that GIS Spotlight dedicated the award to the late Commissioner of Corrections and Rehabilitation, Dr. William Rattray, for inspiring many men and changing their thinking. "The story illustrates his vision and firm belief in rehabilitation."

The next story, Panama Trade Mission, bags the regional awareness category's top slot. In this piece, Hopson and Nyyossonen follow a Cayman delegation as it explores trade partnerships in the region and boosts commerce for the Islands.

Referring to the "doubly rewarding" win Mr. Nyyossonen said, "We usually focus on stories about how government is working to improve lives in Cayman. In contrast, this story gives a rare opportunity to see government working abroad to build bridges in commerce and trade."

Commenting on the entire team's performance, GIS Electronic Media Manager Wesley Emanuel said, "We always take pride in the quality and professionalism of the work we do on behalf of government and the people of Cayman. It is good now to have CBU recognise that quality on a regional basis."

The CBU awards build on GIS Spotlight capturing the Pan American Health Organisation's best feature/documentary award for excellence in health journalism in 2008. In HSA Goes Smoke Free, Ms. Hopson and Mr. Nyyossonen showcased the healthcare provider's move to a more wholesome user environment.


For further information contact: Bina Mani