The Territory will focus on defining the vision of the Territory’s greatest visionary leader, Hamilton Lavity Stoutt for the 26th Memorial celebration.
Director of Culture, Dr. Katherine Smith said, "Through the constitutional advances of 1950 and 1967, the Territory was able to progress with greater self-determination. In 1967, we were able to have for the first time a "Chief Minister" who was also the Minister for Education - the late Honourable H. Lavity Stoutt. With these accomplishments, we were able to truly establish a trajectory for development. Examining the broader legacy of H. Lavity Stoutt especially as it relates to the empowerment of his people indeed allows us to appreciate the importance of charting our own destiny."
This year’s celebration is being held under the theme, “Defining the Vision: ‘Empowering My People’” and will take place at the Cappoon’s Bay field on Monday, March 1 at 10:00 a.m. immediately after the Laying of the Wreath at 9:30 a.m. at the Cappoon’s Bay Burial Grounds.
Hamilton Lavity Stoutt served in many capacities during his time. His favorite quote was said to be “Where there is no vision the people perish”. It is from his vision for the people of the Virgin Islands that the Territory’s first tertiary institute, the H. Lavity Stoutt Community College, was founded as well as other major capital developments that are still beneficial to residents today.
During this year’s celebration, the committee will be sharing information on his vision and efforts for developing the human resources of the Virgin Islands through education.
H. Lavity Stoutt Memorial Celebration is a traditional event hosted by the Government of the Virgin Islands in collaboration with the H. Lavity Stoutt Commemorative Committee.
The Government of the Virgin Islands through the Department of Culture celebrates the life of the late Honourable H. Lavity Stoutt as a person of historic significance to the Territory every year on the first Monday in March. The day is declared a public holiday in celebration of the anniversary of the birthday of the Territory’s first Chief Minister. The late H. Lavity Stoutt was born on March 7, 1929 and died on May 14, 1995.