The United Progressive Party is pleased that this groundbreaking event, its first Virtual Public Meeting – actually a first in Antigua & Barbuda – coincides with the celebration of International Women’s Day 2021.
TO make this occasion even more special, the Party decided to recognize a woman who is making an outstanding contribution in a sphere of national life, and to do so every year on this day, March 8.
The inaugural selection comes at a time when the usual yardsticks for judging do not necessarily apply. This is because life, as we knew it, is redefining itself daily amid the harsh realities of COVID-19. As a result, the range of activities in which citizens are usually involved has been narrowed considerably.
Accordingly, after consideration of several distinguished women – giving outstanding service in social activism, literacy, education, health and politics – the decision was made in favour of the nominee representing health, given the situation in which the Nation finds itself.
Therefore, it gives me great pleasure, in my capacity as Miss Sunshine 2020, to announce the selection of Ms. Sharon Martin as the United Progressive Party’s “Outstanding Woman,” marking International Women’s Day 2021.
Ms. Martin has given 40 years of dedicated service to the Nation. She made “her-story” as the first female public-health inspector and has risen to become Antigua & Barbuda’s first female Chief Health Inspector, with a Master’s degree in public health under her belt.
We salute Ms. Martin for her fearlessness in executing her duties as the guardian of public health under circumstances that this country, literally, has never before faced.
She has conducted her work without fear, seeking no favour, and, too often, with little acknowledgment or appreciation for the role she plays in safeguarding the Nation.
Yet, she continues to maintain her professionalism in demeanour, attitude and execution. She is supportive, informed and forthcoming on issues that could compromise the safety and health of the population, yet brings a commonsense and cooperative approach to the realities of business.
On behalf of the Executive and Membership, I am therefore proud – as one “first” to another – to salute Sharon Martin, Chief Health Inspector, as our Outstanding Woman, 2021, and to wish her a safe, fulfilling and productive year.
Congratulations, Ms. Martin!
Delivered by Shontae Smith
Miss Sunshine 2020-21
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