News Releases

The UWI extends condolences on the passing of UWI Press General Manager, Dr Joseph B. Powell

For Release Upon Receipt - April 27, 2021


The University of the West Indies (The UWI) joins the Board and staff of UWI Press in mourning the passing of UWI Press’ General Manager, Dr Joseph B. Powell who died on April 25, 2021.

Dr Powell led The UWI Press for the past four and a half years, having joined The UWI in September 2016. He brought more than two decades of experience in scholarly publishing to the role. In an outpouring of tributes from his UWI Press team, he is remembered by colleagues for his professionalism, kindness and genuine concern for members of staff and their families. 

Expressing his personal sympathy on Dr Powell’s passing, Vice-Chancellor of The UWI, Professor Sir Hilary Beckles, described him as a “a gentleman, scholar and exemplary leader”.  “We had the privilege of his dedication and love for literature and academia for a short time, but his impact was profound. I send blessings and empowerment during this period of loss to his love ones.”

In tribute, Pro Vice-Chancellor for Global Affairs and Principal of The UWI Open Campus, Dr Luz Longsworth, who is also Chair of the UWI Press Board stated, “Dr Powell led with enthusiasm and vision as he worked assiduously with the staff and Board to ensure that the UWI Press maintained and grew its reputation for excellence in publishing award winning content. He must also be recognised for having the foresight to lead the digital transformation of the Press which has allowed us to survive the current disruptions caused by COVID-19. Members of the Board will always treasure Dr Powell's dedication to The UWI, his love for all things Caribbean and his deep commitment to showcasing the scholarly work emanating from The UWI and the region at large”, she said.

Dr Powell was a student and scholar of the Caribbean with a career in scholarly publishing that spanned over 25 years. He held a BSc in Sociology from the College of Charleston, an MA in Anthropology and a PhD in Geography and Anthropology from Louisiana State University. Prior to his appointment at The UWI, he served as Senior Acquisitions Editor at the University of Alabama Press, and as Acquisitions Editor at Louisiana State University Press. During his time at The UWI, he worked towards his vision

of increasing The UWI Press’ presence and visibility in the Association of American University Presses (AAUP), and to acquire more North American-based scholarship on the Caribbean, particularly work by Caribbean diaspora scholars.

The UWI community extends deepest condolences to the family and loved ones of Dr Joseph B. Powell on his passing. He will be missed dearly.




About the UWI Press

The University of the West Indies Press is a not-for-profit scholarly publisher of books in fourteen academic disciplines. It is particularly well known for its work in Caribbean history, Caribbean cultural studies, Caribbean literature, gender studies, education and political science. Founded in 1992, the Press has over 350 books in print and has 120 of these books available in the Kindle and Kobo stores. Its books are peer-reviewed and approved by an editorial committee composed of local and international scholars. Over the last twenty years the UWI Press has won over eighty international, regional and national book awards for scholarly, editorial and production excellence.


About The UWI

The UWI has been and continues to be a pivotal force in every aspect of Caribbean development; residing at the centre of all efforts to improve the well-being of people across the region.

From a university college of London in Jamaica with 33 medical students in 1948, The UWI is today an internationally respected, global university with near 50,000 students and five campuses: Mona in Jamaica, St. Augustine in Trinidad and Tobago, Cave Hill in Barbados, Five Islands in Antigua and Barbuda and its Open Campus, and 10 global centres in partnership with universities in North America, Latin America, Asia, Africa and Europe.

The UWI offers over 800 certificate, diploma, undergraduate and postgraduate degree options in Culture, Creative and Performing Arts, Food and Agriculture, Engineering, Humanities and Education, Law, Medical Sciences, Science and Technology, Social Sciences, and Sport. As the Caribbean’s leading university, it possesses the largest pool of Caribbean intellect and expertise committed to confronting the critical issues of our region and wider world.

Ranked among the top universities in the world, by the most reputable ranking agency, Times Higher Education, The UWI is the only Caribbean-based university to make the prestigious lists. In 2020, it earned ‘Triple 1st’ rankings—topping the Caribbean; and in the top in the tables for Latin America and the Caribbean, and global Golden Age universities (between 50 and 80 years old).  The UWI is also featured among the top universities on THE’s Impact Rankings for its response to the world’s biggest concerns, outlined in the 17 United Nations Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), including Good Health and Wellbeing; Gender Equality and Climate Action.

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(Please note that the proper name of the university is The University of the West Indies, inclusive of the “The”, hence The UWI.)