by Linda Straker
- Claris Charles among 4 Grenadians honoured on Queen’s 2019 Birthday Honour List
- Member of Parliament for constituency of St John 1999 to 2003
“CBE means: Country before everything, Community before everything, Christ before everything, Charity before everything.” These were the comments from Claris Charles who received the highest honour for Grenada in the Queen’s 2019 Birthday Honour List.
Charles who is presently Grenada’s Ambassador to Cuba was honoured with the CBE order. She is among 4 Grenadians honoured on the list.
“Many times, we do things not to be recognised. We contribute because it’s the right thing to do. This award is a great honour not only for me but for those who were more deserving and fell through the cracks. It is for all those who contributed to my upbringing, friends who supported me, my family who were the wind beneath my wings, even my enemies who taught me all that I should not be,” said Charles who was honoured for her services to education, trade unionism and foreign affairs.
“I hope that it will be an inspiration to all persons and especially women who were born in dire circumstances like me. We should be like water grass. Our roots might be in the gutter, but our heads must always rise above,” said Charles who also served as Member of Parliament for the constituency of St John for the years 1999 to 2003.
The other honoured Grenadians are: Dr Michael Radix who received the OBE title for services to health and community service; Sylvia Nyack who received the MBE title for services to business and community service, while the honour of British Empire Medal or BEM was awarded to Raphael Johnson for services to culture.
Known as Croqueta in the entertainment industry this educator is among calypsonians who made it to the final calypso competition for many years.