The Emperial Group was named as one of America’s Cup Bermuda’s Community Ambassadors earlier this month. They were chosen for their broad reach to a variety of groups and their focus on unifying the community for a common objective.
Eugene Dean, Corrin Smith and Gladwyn Simmons are the group’s principals and Dean, who acts as the group’s spokesman, has talked about their involvement with the ACBDA and why he believes the America’s Cup is good for Bermuda.
What is your background?
As social entrepreneurs, we build enterprise around programmes geared towards addressing social needs. Our involvement in the community has been very broad and inclusive of a comprehensive range of areas such as youth development, grassroots development, sports, culture, spirituality, holistic health, education, environment, alternative therapies, wellness, home birth, midwifery, entertainment, information technology and the arts.
What is the Emperial Group’s goal?
Emperial Group’s goal is to serve the interest of people and our mantra is Unity in the Community, World Vibe; Fighting with Peace and not for it.
What is your role in regards to ACBDA?
Our role involves engaging with the America’s Cup to the extent that we can represent the value it brings to our country, the challenges associated with its execution and the opportunities available to all segments of our local community.
“Likewise, it involves engaging the broader community to provide access where there are interests, and solutions to the challenges and concerns that surface in the public domain.
What do you hope to achieve?
Rather than discussing hope, we’d prefer to discuss what we are doing. We have become far more knowledgeable about the America’s Cup and, as a result, have been able to share our new-found understanding with everyone we encounter in person or via mass media.
“That sharing has begun to bring clarity and transparency to a subject that has previously been characterised otherwise.”
For those who think the America’s Cup is not for them, what is your response?
Good question, because we too had concerns and for that reason we inquired. As expected there is a whole lot more to the book than its cover. What we found is that there are challenges, but more importantly there are also opportunities which we have taken the initiative to engage. We encourage everyone to consider the following quote from Bob Marley: “In the abundance of water, a fool is thirsty.”
Why do you think the America’s Cup is a good thing for Bermuda?
The America’s Cup is a top-tier international sports event and hosting it in Bermuda represents the best opportunity we’ve had since the 80s to enhance the Bermuda brand and give our tourism industry a much needed shot in the arm.
Do you hope to convert the naysayers? Why or why not?
We are already turning fear into optimism and will continue to do so as long as we are involved.
What are you looking forward to the most for AC35?
The foreign capital that it will bring into our economy, the opportunities that will arise for new business and the confidence that will spread throughout our community when we remind ourselves once again what we can accomplish in Bermuda when we come together for our common good.