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Outstanding Vincentian Sir Fred Phillips passes

Outstanding Vincentian Sir Fred Phillips passes

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An outstanding Vincentian educator, diplomat, lawyer and writer has died at the age of 92.{{more}}

Sir Fred Phillips, who was born at Brighton in St. Vincent on May 14, 1918, died on Sunday, February 20, 2011, at his Hodges Bay, Antigua, home.

Sir Fred became the first black Governor of what was then St. Kitts-Nevis-Anguilla on the attainment of statehood on February 27, 1967, and served until 1969.

He had served earlier as administrator.

He was also Cabinet Secretary of the West Indies Federation from 1960 to 1962, Senior Assistant Registrar at the University of the West Indies from 1966 to 1967, and chairman of Grenada Telecommunications Ltd, Telecoms of Dominica, and U.S. Agency for International Development of Agricultural (USAID) Venture Trust.

Sir Fred also authored many publications, among them West Indian Constitutions: Post-Independence Reform (1985), Caribbean life and culture: A citizen reflects (1991), Commonwealth Caribbean Constitutional Law (2002), Ethics of the Legal Profession (2004), and The Death Penalty and Human Rights (2009), among others.

St. Kitts and Nevis’ Prime Minister Hon. Dr. Denzil L. Douglas expressed “deep sadness, personal loss, and sincere condolences” and said that the appointment of the late Sir Fred Phillips in the mid-1960s as the first black administrator and then first black governor of the then-Kitts-Nevis-Anguilla “was a moment rich with symbolism, promise and import.”

He added that the Vincentian-born jurist “was a child of the Caribbean whose accomplishments and contributions were vast and expansive.”

Despite residing overseas, Sir Fred was fiercely patriotic, and made frequent trips home to St. Vincent. As recently as 2008, he took part in the 100th Anniversary celebrations of his Alma Mater, the St. Vincent Grammar School. In 2009, he also attended the “Behold the Man” lecture which was based on his life.

Sir Fred will be laid to rest in Antigua.

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