United States President Joe Biden has named Jamaican immigrant and veteran New York assemblyman Noah Nicholas “Nick” Perry, as his nominee for Ambassador Extraordinary and Plenipotentiary to Jamaica.
The 71-year-old Perry was born in St Andrew and, after secondary schooling at Kingston College, joined the Bustamante Industrial Trade Union (BITU) as an organiser, prior to emigrating to the United States in 1971.
The following year he volunteered for the United States Army, from which he was honourably discharged at the rank of Specialist Five in 1978, after serving as an active-duty serviceman for two years and an inactive reserve for four years.
He earned a Bachelor of Arts from Brooklyn College, Brooklyn, New York, and later returned to Brooklyn College to study for a Master of Arts in public policy and administration.
Buoyed by his college heritage as a strong student leader, rights activist, and founder of the United Student League, Perry got involved with community organising and gained recognition as an effective advocate and strong leader in his community. He was appointed to the local community board where he demonstrated the leadership skills that propelled him to election by his colleagues as chairman.
Perry served five consecutive terms on the Brooklyn Borough board before being elected to the State Assembly in 1992 to represent the 58th Assembly District, which was newly reapportioned to Brooklyn. He was elected unopposed in November 2020 to his 15th consecutive two-year term. In 2020, he was elected and served as a Biden-pledged delegate.
He was named Legislator of the Year by the National Black Caucus of State Legislators in 2018 and has been recognised with honours from New York Civil Liberties Union and the New York State Association of Black and Puerto Rican Legislators, among others.