Dominica recognises Professor Sir Hilary Beckles with one of the country’s highest awards

Dominica recognises Professor Sir Hilary Beckles with one of the country’s highest awards

The UWI Regional Headquarters, Jamaica. 03 November 2016 – The Government of Dominica has conferred the country’s second highest state award – the Sisserou Award of Honour on Vice-Chancellor of The University of the West Indies, Professor Sir Hilary Beckles. The award was presented by President of the Commonwealth of Dominica, His Excellency Charles Angelo Savarin, at a ceremony earlier today, November 3, 2016; as part of Dominica’s 38th Independence celebrations.

The Sisserou Award of Honour, created in 1967, is named after the national bird, the Sisserou (imperial amazon/Amazona imperialis) – a parrot indigenous only to Dominica, particularly near the island’s rainforest.

In an official correspondence, Prime Minister of Dominica, the Honourable Roosevelt Skerrit stated, “The Government of Dominica has taken a decision to advise the President of Dominica to confer the Sisserou Award of Honour in recognition of your (Vice-Chancellor Beckles’) contribution to the Commonwealth of Dominica and the region in the field of education”.

In responding to the news of the award, Vice-Chancellor Beckles said, “This is an unexpected and extraordinary honour that gives me considerable personal satisfaction as an educator and much pride as Vice-Chancellor of The UWI. Serving the Caribbean people in both capacities is my principal objective and Dominica is one of my favourite societies in the world.  I am deeply moved by this recognition and I give thanks.”

Vice-Chancellor Beckles is among a total of six distinguished persons who received the Sisserou Award of Honour this year. Other awardees included: Secretary General of the Caribbean Community (CARICOM), Ambassador Irwin LaRocque for his contribution to public service; Dr Curvin Ferreira, for his contribution to medicine; former Government Minister Julius Timothy, for his contribution to politics and business; Ms Jennifer Astaphan, for her contribution to public service and Mr Cecil Peter Shillingford, for his contribution in the field of disaster management.

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