St. Lucia’s Allen Chastanet raising the “Tourism Bar”

CASTRIES, St. Lucia – St. Lucia’s Tourism and Civil Aviation Minister Senator Allen Chastanet says he is honored to have been selected as one of five honorees of Counterpart International’s World Leadership Awards, an accolade which he hopes will bring more recognition to tourism and the role the industry plays in the development of communities.

Chastanet, a former Vice President of Air Jamaica, said that in the last six years Counterpart International, along with a number of other organisations and companies, has been able to raise the profile of sustainable tourism, allowing some of the stigmas once associated with the industry to be removed as people saw the benefits to education, health and culture.

Allen Chastanet

“Thanks largely to the Caribbean Media Exchange (CMEx) – a sustainable tourism forum produced by Counterpart International and attended by journalists, young people and tourism officials – many more persons in the region and the Diaspora now know that choosing a path of tourism can work hand in hand with developing a strong economy,” he said.

“Places like Bermuda and Dubai have done a phenomenal job in raising the general wealth of these countries through progressive policies on tourism,” Chastanet noted.

He was speaking ahead of next month’s World Leadership Awards which will pay tribute to visionaries singled out for their contributions to improving lives in their regions and around the globe through their work. The presentations are set for Guastavino’s in New York City on Wednesday September 19, 2007.

The other four honorees are President of the Dominican Republic, Leonel Fernández; Television executive Paxton Baker, the Executive Vice President and General Manager of BET J and BET Digital Networks, and President of BET Event Productions; Public relations legend, David Finn, cofounder and Chairman of Ruder Finn; and the Caribbean’s largest carrier Air Jamaica, the national carrier of both Jamaica and Barbados.

Senator Chastanet, the current Chairman of the Caribbean Tourism Organization, said that having these awards and recognizing people who take on leadership roles is a great way of supporting tourism and its potential. “My guess is that I am being recognized for my participation in CMEx and general contributions I have made towards the development of tourism in the region, so I am really honored to have been selected particularly by an organisation like Counterpart,” he said.

He added that he was just one of a number of St. Lucians who has been seeking to make their country proud by distinguishing themselves in this and other fields of endeavor not only in St. Lucia but on the regional and international stage.

“We in St. Lucia must start recognizing the fact that our nation has become a force to be reckoned with, and we need to start stepping up to the plate and instead of making excuses and comparing ourselves to lesser economies in the region, let us set loftier goals and start focusing on delivering more based on what our potential is,” he recommended.

Related Articles

Back to top button