Renowned Dominican journalist, former Dominica News Online guest editor and BBC broadcaster, Ken Richards, has died.
He passed away on Sunday at the Dominica China Friendship Hospital.
The versatile Richards was widely known in practically all forms for media including radio and print.
He has worked for the Government Information Service here in Dominica, at the Dominica Broadcasting Station, Radio Antilles, Voice of the Island Radio, Observer in Antigua, WINN FM Radio St. Kitts, Marpin Telcoms & Broadcasting, Dominica News Online (DNO), and the BBC Caribbean Service in London.
In the later part of his career he started his own online radio station and news site, OSAR, which demonstrated his passion for journalism.
However, his passion was not limited to only journalism but he is known as a song writer and musician.
Fellow journalist, Julian Rogers, in a tribute described Richards as “a trailblazer, fearlessly traversing the worlds of journalism and music and leaving an indelible impact in both arenas.”
“His unwavering commitment to reporting the news and current affairs of the Caribbean region was unparalleled,” Rogers wrote. “Through his work with esteemed organisations such as the now-defunct Caribbean World Service of the BBC, Radio Antilles in Montserrat, the Observer in Antigua, and WINN FM in St. Kitts and Nevis, Ken became a trusted voice, delivering accurate and insightful stories to audiences near and far.”
He said Richards was “a guiding light for aspiring journalists and musicians alike.
“His wisdom, mentorship, and unwavering commitment to truth and integrity nurtured a new generation of talent, shaping the future of journalism with his invaluable insights,” Rogers stated. “The mark he left on newsrooms and creative spaces will forever be cherished and remembered.”
Meanwhile, on Sunday, as news of Richards’ death spread, colleagues and ordinary people took to social media to mourn the man whose cool and steady voice they were familiar with on the radio.
“The Caribbean media fraternity has lost an icon and I, a good friend and mentor,” Toni Frederick-Armstrong, who worked with Richards at WINN FM, wrote on Facebook. “Ken Richards an outstanding journalist and broadcaster passed away today in Dominica. I was fortunate to work with him, here in St. Kitts at WINN FM where he was my Editor. Ken was a fair and fearless reporter, a stickler for detail and accuracy and was relentless in his pursuit of a story. He brought decades of experience to the St. Kitts and Nevis media landscape.”
“Ken’s professionalism, knowledge, and sense of humor, coupled with his commitment to integrity and fairness, set him apart as a true journalist,” another of Richards’ colleague, Michael Bascombe, wrote.
Fellow Dominican, Valley Fountaine, who worked with Richards at the BBC in London wrote, “Ken was a Journalists Journalist, a man with so much passion and integrity. Not only is he a loss the industry, but also to all who knew him.”
DNO Managing Director, Tim Durand described Richards, his friend and colleague for many years, as one of the most accomplished journalists to have come out of Dominica.
“Ken represented the highest standards of journalism in Dominica and indeed, in the Caribbean and beyond,” Durand stated. “He was, in my opinion, a brilliant news interviewer with a brand of incisive questioning that did not leave his interviewees with much wiggle room. Ken insisted on top quality journalism from those with whom he worked and was deeply committed to helping others in his field to grow.”
Undoubtedly, Richards will be missed, not only in the Dominica, but in the Caribbean and beyond.