Connie Mark B.e.M M.B.E
A pioneer, community activist, Caribbean champion and patron of Descendants.
Constance Mark, known to Descendants as Connie, was born in Jamaica on 21st December 1923. Connie was an inspirational woman, a mother, grandmother and a role model to all young people she came in contact with.
This inspirational lady met Descendants at a performance in Chiswick Town Hall, soon after Descendants was established. Connie made an instant impact and came to many of our events, and invited us to perform at many of the events she organised. Most memorable were the Black History festivals for Hammersmith & Fulham Borough. Connie was associated with countless other charitable, community and educational initiatives, including the Mary Seacole Memorial Association, of which she was a founder member and president, she was also an active member of the West Indian Ex-Servicemen and Women’s Association and of the West Indian Standing Conference.
In 1997, the children chose Connie to become our second patron, following MP Mr Paul Boateng. Shortly before her passing Connie endorsed our newest patron Dr John Roberts Q.C.
Connie was very passionate about the Caribbean, which made her a champion of its culture and a formidable force within the black community. She was much in demand for her poetry and storytelling events, using oral history to address the young. Connie was a remarkable woman, who inspired so many young people. She told them stories and taught them many Caribbean songs and poetry. Descendants were very privileged to have shared so many special memories with Connie. She will be greatly missed by all of us but she will never be forgotten. We will continue to award The Connie Mark trophy at our Annual Achievement Awards.
Dr John Roberts CBE QC DCL LLD FCIArb
The late Dr Roberts QC CBE was a man credited with many firsts, the most notable being the first person of African ancestry to be appointed by the British Government to serve as a High Court judge of the Supreme Courts of the British Virgin Islands, and Anguilla, British West Indies in 1992.
The former High Court judge is also believed to be the first person of African ancestry to be made a Queen’s Counsel in England and Wales.
Read his obituary at thevoice.com
Lennox K. Thomas MA, CQSW, BPC, AFT, UKCP (Fellow)
- The first person of Caribbean descent to become a senior probation officer
- A past member and Chair of Descendants’ management committee
- A community activist
- An inspirational speaker
- A published author
Lennox K. Thomas MA, CQSW, BPC, AFT, UKCP (Fellow). trained in child development, clinical social work, child and family psychotherapy and psychoanalytic psychotherapy.
He was Clinical Director of Nafsiyat Intercultural Therapy Centre, and Co- Director of the University College (London) MSc in Intercultural Psychotherapy. He was a co-founder and Consultant Psychotherapist at the Refugee Therapy Centre. Influenced by his work with children and parents in hospitals and probation, he had an interest in attachment, and trans-generational family trauma.
His published works include:
- “Attachment in African Caribbean Families”, Attachment Theory in Adult Mental Health, eds. A. Danquah & K. Berry, Routledge 2014.
- “Relational Psychotherapy: The significance of Father”. Psychodynamic Practice, 16, 61-75. (2010).
- “Parenting roles and the African Caribbean man in post-slavery society” eds. P. Lovejoy & B. Bowser, UNESCO, Africana World Press (2014).