Guyanese playwright Ian Valz was decorated as Knight
of the Order of Oranje-Nassau in St Maarten last Friday.
According to a report from the island, Valz was one of 11 persons who were decorated as knights and members in honour of the birthday of Queen Beatrix of the Netherlands.
Lt Governor Franklyn Richards, who bestowed the royal decorations during the reception, said the recipients selected met the criteria of "exceptional voluntary and personal service or achievements".
Valz, along with Cassandra Gibbs, Lisandra Havertong, Jean Illidge, Merlyn Schaminee-Miguel and Sidney Sorton were decorated Knights of the Order of Oranje-Nassau and Glorine Richardson, Maximiliaan Phelipa, Kenneth Lopes, James Marlin and Maxine Reid were decorated Members of the Order of Oranje-Nassau, the report said.
Valz, who migrated to St Maarten 20 years ago, plays a major role in the cultural enrichment of the island by training youths, school children and teachers in theatre and dramatic arts. He is also known for his efforts at developing adult theatre on the island and has received international acclaim for his play Masquerade.
He is also well remembered here for his radio drama, The House of Pressure, which he later staged successfully at the National Cultural Centre.