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Trailblazers – Celebrating exemplary women in Jamaica

International Women’s Day (8 March) is a global day celebrating the economic, political and social achievements of women past, present and future. Women have fought relentlessly for equality in many parts of the world and continue to fight for this right. For decades, women have fought for and continue to fight for the right to rock the world with their true potential. On the road to this year’s International Women’s Day which we celebrate this Friday, conferences, legislations, blood, sweat and tears have gone into elevating women to where they are today. The Focus of this piece will be on The Prime Minister of Jamaica.


Portia Simpson Miller

The first female to ever lead Jamaica in the capacity of prime minister, Prime Minister Portia Simpson Miller created history in Jamaica’s political landscape. Simpson Miller was elected as prime minister in March 2006. Serving for a year before her party lost the general elections. in 2007, she again became prime minister after her party, The People’s National Party, won the general election in December 2012. With her political career starting in the 1970s, she has had gained experience managing several portfolios. While serving as Prime Minister, Simpson-Miller retained the positions of Minister of Defence, Development, Information and Sports. She had served as Minister of Labour, Social Security and Sport, Minister of Tourism and Sports and Minister of Local Government throughout the years.

Simpson-Miller was ranked by Time magazine as among its “100 Most Influential Persons in the World” in 2012.Simpson-Miller was named Person of the Year by The Gleaner and Observer in the Gleaner awards 2011.Simpson-Miller is a member of the Council of Women World Leaders, an international network of current and former female presidents and prime ministers.

The job is not done. Violence against women and discriminations in various forms are still a way of life for many. We have won many battles, but the war is a far cry from being over. until then, before we get back into the trenches, let’s have a mini victory party and celebrate the women who have made it and shown others that it can be done. Tell a woman today how awesome she is, as we celebrate International Women’s Day.  


Readers digest: More information about women making great strides in Jamaica can be found on this link.  http://jamaica-gleaner.com/gleaner/20130304/flair/flair1.html

Jason Madden

IYSO Council Member