Professor Barry Chevannes was a 1957 graduate of St. George’s College. A brilliant student, he gained his Bachelors of Arts in Philosophy and Masters of Arts from Boston college, a Masters of Science in Sociology from the University of the West Indies and a Doctorate in Applied Anthropology from Columbia University.
He taught at St. George’s College, Campion College, St. Mary’s College and at the University of the West Indies, where he held the position of Dean of the Faculty of Social Sciences up to 2004. At the University of the West Indies, his work on Rastafari made him a leading scholar in this area.
His influence was not confined to the corridors of learning. He was a social activist and was particularly concerned about the impact of gun violence on the society. He chaired the council of the Institute of Jamaica, founded Fathers Incorporated, Partners of Peace and was a director of the Centre of Public Safety and Justice. He was a member of the Peace Management Initiative, Chairman of the Jamaican Justice System Reform Task Force and the Co-chair of the CARICOM Commission of Youth Development.
A self-taught musician, he wrote a number of popular Jamaican religious songs. He wrote freely in the Jamaican dialect which includes Blak Op, a song about the Day of Pentecost and the Christmas song, Holy Im Name. However he is probably best known for writing the Communion hymn, Father Bless.
The St. George’s community salutes Professor Barry Chevannes for his contribution to the community and for his service to the school.