Barbados Alumni Reception
Ambassador Larry L. Palmer
Barbados, August 30, 2012
Good evening and welcome everyone!
I am glad to see so many of you here tonight – so many alumni from our programs like the Fulbright scholarships, the Humphrey fellowship, Summer Institutes, and the International Visitor Leadership Programs.
These academic and professional exchange programs in which all of you participated connect Barbadians and Americans, and offer opportunities for us to exchange information and share expertise. They deepen the already-strong relationships between our people, and our two countries.
Hundreds of Barbadians have taken part in these programs. Your ranks include Attorneys General and Ministers, academics and administrators, economists and entrepreneurs, law enforcement officers, media, civil servants and civil society leaders. All of you here tonight have a strong connection, through these programs and through your dedication to your fields, and to serving your country.
President Obama said “service binds us to each other – and to our communities and our country – in a way that nothing else can.”
I expect that all of you here tonight recognize a bit of yourselves in that – in how you serve your country, or how you are bound to your community. We at the U.S. Embassy think of you alumni as part of our community – an extension of our bilateral relationship with Barbados, and our regional relationship with the Eastern Caribbean.
Our featured speaker tonight, Mr. Kennedy Roberts, came home to Grenada from his IV program on volunteerism, took President Obama’s words to heart, and built a Association that channels the energy of Grenada’s many talented Alumni into projects that serve their community.
I met with Kennedy and other alumni in St. Georges in June and was amazed by their enthusiasm and their work. He is here tonight to share this with you, and – perhaps – to inspire you to build such an association here in Barbados.