Ladies and Gentlemen,
It is my immense pleasure and honour to welcome you to this Inaugural Induction Ceremony. This is a historic occasion, and I am so proud to be able to bring congratulatory remarks. I offer the heartiest congratulations to you, the primary class of our very own Foreign service institute.
You are the first. You forty-two young, eager Bahamians are the very first cohort to graduate from the Alrae Ramsey Institute of Foreign Affairs. You set the tone, the benchmark, the standard. I trust that you understand how tremendous an honour and a responsibility has been laid before you. As Foreign Service Officers you will represent the Bahamas and work to advance our diplomatic agenda worldwide.
During your time as officers-in-training, you’ve learned all the skills necessary to execute your duties as a full-service officer. You’ve learned international diplomacy, studied policy, honed your language and communication skills, and learned to present yourselves as professionals.
The Bahamas Alrae Ramsey Institute of Foreign Affairs has trained you to be equipped with the technical adeptness, adaptability, and finesse to carry out the directives of our administration.
The investment in you, our newest Foreign Service Officers underscores our administration’s belief that our young Bahamians have the ability to serve their nation with integrity and pride.
Do not forget what you’ve learned—continue to grow, expand, and strive.
You are direct agents of the Bahamas, who’ll play a crucial role in implementing the government’s foreign policy. One of the most pressing and immediate goals of this administration is to foster diplomatic ties and relationships with countries that share values and are aligned with our national interests.
To accomplish such ambitious goals, we need Foreign Service officers who are highly motivated and committed to assisting in executing these national objectives.
Maximising the Bahamas’ global footprint is vital to increasing international visibility and augmenting our voice in a globalized world. You, our best and brightest, will work to staff and develop Bahamian embassies and consulates.
You will participate at the United Nations and ensure that the Bahamas is well represented in all international conversations. You are charged with the awesome task of helping to create and maintain the Bahamas’ global, diplomatic image.
In a world filled with uncertainty, and for us, particularly, who are vulnerable to climate crises—having strong ties with other countries stands to make all the difference. If we are to thrive, not just survive, our foreign service must be efficient, effective, and excellent!
You stand among the few who’ve been given this opportunity. Stand with pride, and walk with the knowledge that you work for the common good.
You join the ranks of this Institute’s namesake, Alrae Ramsey, who, in his short life, made a tremendous impact as a diplomatic agent for the Bahamas.
There are too many words to describe Alrae Ramsey, but I will settle on diligent, dedicated, and professional. In his life, Alrae helped create important and lasting diplomatic ties and now, even in his death, his legacy as a dutiful and unwavering Foreign Service Officer persists.
I express my sincerest gratitude to the Honourable Frederick A. Mitchell, Minister of Foreign Affairs and the Public Service, as well as the distinguished faculty and administration of the Institute. They have done a fantastic job organizing, training and preparing you for this major step in your foreign service officer career.
Congratulations to you. Your commitment, toil, and earnestness have put you in a position to be a vitally important asset to the Bahamas’ international agenda. I wish you all the very best.
May God bless you all and continue to bless the Commonwealth of the Bahamas.