Outgoing United States Ambassador to to Barbados, the Eastern Caribbean, and the OECS, Larry Palmer, has said that leaders who put service to their constituents first, with an eye to promoting the greater good, are especially important to the continued prosperity of the region.
Palmer, who is leaving his post, made the comments in a farewell message.
He noted that people of the Western hemisphere are blessed to live in peace and prosperity.
However the US diplomat observed that democracy is fragile, and must be continually nurtured and supported.
“Strong institutions require courageous leaders with a clear vision of the future and an unwavering commitment to the rule of law, transparency and accountability. Leaders who put service to their constituents first,“ Palmer asserted.
He said he was leaving with warm memories and an unshakeable belief in, and respect for, the talents that lie within the people of the region.
“I am thoroughly convinced that there is nothing in Barbados and the Eastern Caribbean that its citizens cannot accomplish,” he said.
Palmer recalled that during his tenure, the United States partnered with governments, non-governmental organizations, the business community, faith-based organizations, and educational institutions on a variety of projects and initiatives.
He observed that these included working to protect shared borders to improve security, lowering HIV infection rates among some of the most vulnerable population and raising awareness of domestic violence and human rights.
Palmer noted that he had been nicknamed “the education ambassador”, which he described as “a most fitting moniker.”
A former college Professor, Palmer said during his tenure the U.S. Embassy hosted college fairs that yielded dozens of scholarships for local students, brokered memoranda of understanding between regional universities and universities in the United States.