Ministry of Education honours retirees

MOE HONOREES – The Ministry of Education held a special luncheon at The Grand Lucayan Resort recently in honour of longstanding employees of the Ministry. Pictured are seven of the honorees, from left to right: Joycelyn Pinder, Ludell Whylly, Marilyn Lewis, Herbert Marshall, Dr. Barbara Hall, Paula Mortimer, Ed. D and Petlen Clarke. (PHOTOS: JENNEVA RUSSELL)

Long-serving former employees of the Ministry of Education recently were saluted.

At the Grand Lucayan Resort a week ago Friday, November 30, The Ministry of Education (MOE) hosted the ‘Stars in the Spotlight Retirees Luncheon’ for 12 honorees who served in various capacities. Family, friends, former colleagues and well wishers were present to celebrate with the honorees.

The longest serving contributor to the Ministry was Ludell Whylly who served for 49 years as a Resource Center Manager.

Gaylene Bain- Pinder, Senior Education Officer, MOE and Chairperson, Retirees Luncheon noted the reason behind hosting such a gala event for the retirees.

“We have some persons who have worked at the Ministry of Education headquarters for a number of years. We thought it only fitting that we should gather them together in an appreciation luncheon, to express our thanks.

“There are so many times that there are persons who have worked for countless years; we have someone here today who worked for the Ministry of Education for 49 years, and when they retire they sometimes feel as if we have forgotten them. We want to say to them, we haven’t forgotten you and you have left an indelible mark and we will always remember you.

“This is just our way of saying thank you to them and showing them how much we appreciate them, for their labour of love and for their commitment and dedication to the work that they have done over the years.

“We are honouring persons who have served in different capacities; persons who served in the clerical staff, education officers, former principals and vice principals. Once they had worked in the Ministry of Education, Grand Bahama District Headquarters and they retired from us, we decided to invite them back, to have a lunch with them, have a chat with them, fellowship with them and make them feel good,” she explained.

While 12 persons were honored and recognized, seven of them were actually present during the luncheon.

Joycelyn Pinder served 23 years within the Ministry of Education Department in various capacities including Education Officer.

She spoke of what the recognition meant to her.

“Well this is an end of a season in my life as educator officially, but not as an educator (on the whole), because throughout the remainder of my life I will continue to teach until I die.

“I am appreciative of any honour that persons give me because I do what I do for the honour and glory of God. I do not expect it, but I do appreciate it,” she said.

Marilyn Lewis served within the Ministry of Education for 33 years. She too shared what the recognition from The Ministry of Education meant to her.

“I feel very proud about this, that someone remembered Marilyn Lewis. I was a messenger within the Ministry of Education for 33 years and I loved it.” Lewis added that she is thoroughly enjoying her retirement.

The 12 honorees and their tenure within The Ministry of Education are as follows:
Ludell Whylly 49 years
Dr. Paula Mortimer 46 years
Marjorie LaFleur 45 years
Dr. Barbara Hall 41 years
Cheryl Marshall-Campbell 40 years
Herbert Marshall 38 years
Judy Dorsette 37 years
Petlen Clarke 36 years
Barbara Barton 34 years
Marilyn Lewis 33 years
Caroline Rigby 29 years
Joycelyn Pinder 23 years

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