The Latin American and Caribbean Internet Addresses Registry (LACNIC) has announced that Trinidad-born technology expert Bevil Wooding is the 2013 recipient of a Lifetime Achievement Award.
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.
“It’s an honour to receive this prestigious award from LACNIC. This was completely unexpected. This recognition strengthens my resolve to continue working to ensure that our people, institutions and governments are fully empowered to use technology for the development 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. As an Internet Strategist and Caribbean Outreach Manger for the US-based research non-profit, Packet Clearing House, he has been the leading advocate for the proliferation of Internet Exchange Points (IXPs) in the Caribbean. His efforts have led to the establishment of IXPs in Grenada, the British Virgin Islands, Dominica and Barbados.
He is also the Chief Knowledge Officer at the international non-profit Congress WBN where he has pioneered the development of Internet streaming and software applications now used across the world. He has also worked with the Caribbean Examination Council (CXC) to develop the Caribbean’s first-ever Digital Media syllabus.
In addition, he is one of the co-architects and the Program Director of the Caribbean Telecommunications Union's Caribbean ICT Roadshow. The Roadshow has helped emphasise 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 am convinced that the Caribbean and Latin America has the creativity, and the capacity to make a meaningful and significant impact on the Internet and on global 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 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 sat 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 is a founding member of the Caribbean Network Operators Group (CaribNOG). Through his contribution as Program Director, CaribNOG has become a dedicated community of computer network operators and technical stakeholders. The volunteer based group now provides a unique regional forum for sharing technical experiences and building human resource capacity.
“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," Wooding said. Wooding's Technology Matters column appears weekly in Thursday's Business Guardian magazine.