Two knights of honour
ST JOHN'S, Antigua, November 3, 2006 - Businessman Allen Stanford and cricketeer Viv Richards were among three receiving Antigua's highest national award.
Stanford was conferred with a Knight Commander of the Most Distinguished Order of the Nation (KCN) and will now be known as Sir Allen.
Richards, already named a National Hero, was conferred with a Knight Companion of the Most Exalted Order of National Hero (KNH).
A third was awarded posthumously. She is Nellie Robinson, whose lifetime work as an educator afforded many Antiguans and Barbudans the opportunity to get an education at her TOR Memorial School. She was conferred posthumously with a Dame Companion of the Most Exalted Order of National Hero (DNH).
The occasion was the nation's Silver Jubilee Independence anniversary celebrations Wednesday.
Sir Viv said it was a proud moment for him.
“To be officially here this morning and among all the other Antiguans and Barbudans, who would have received their awards as well, I am just privileged to be amongst them.”
Sir Allen Stanford said he was deeply honoured.
“My love for the Caribbean, its people and future, particularly that of Antigua and Barbuda, has been clearly displayed by my commitment to the region over the past two decades through long-term investment of capital and human resources.
“It is my hope that the grant of this great personal honour is a reflection of that commitment. I truly hope that this appointment will increase awareness of the success that the Stanford companies have achieved with Caricom nationals comprising the vast majority of our employee base, and that it will further promote the economic and social development of the region.”
Stanford, a fifth-generation Texan, has lived in Antigua for 20 years and holds dual citizenship, having become a citizen of Antigua and Barbuda seven years ago. He is the first American to be knighted by the country and the 15th to receive the honour since it was established in 1998 for Antigua and Barbuda. The chivalric Most Excellent Order of the British Empire was established 4 June 1917 by King George V with the motto For God and the Empire to honour distinguished noncombatant service.
Sir Allen is the second largest employer in Antigua and Barbuda (after the government). Major business investments in Antigua and Barbuda include the Bank of Antigua, Stanford International Bank, Stanford Trust Company, Ltd. and Stanford Development Company Limited.
Among Sir Allen’s key initiatives in the Caribbean is the Alliance for Development through Education and Empowerment, a far-reaching public-private partnership with the Government of Antigua and Barbuda that includes the Empowerment for Ownership Small Business Initiative to stimulate business development by providing low-interest loans to start-up micro and small business ventures.
Following the devastation wrought by Hurricane Luis in 1995, Sir Allen responded to the plight of the government by making the Bank of Antigua building available for the continuation of government until other accommodations were acquired and to the people of Antigua by providing emergency aid and no-interest loans for recovery efforts.
Sir Allen companies sponsor numerous local programs, including Junior Achievement, the Mahico Steel Orchestra, the Masters Calypso Tent and Academy, the Children's Foundation, Inc., St. Bartholomew Center for the Elderly, World Health Day, Youth Leadership workshops, the Caribbean Jaycees and title sponsorship of Antigua Sailing Week, one of the world’s top three sailing regattas.
Sir Allen’s historic 2006 Stanford 20/20 Cricket Tournament reignited the West Indies passion for cricket, united the region and generated considerable profit for local businesses. His investment provided funding and technical support for upgraded infrastructure, training and competition for 19 participating nations and their cricket teams.
Stanford Financial Group is a privately held, wholly owned global group of financial services companies founded by Lodis B. Stanford in 1932. Stanford's core businesses are private wealth management and investment banking for institutions and emerging growth companies. It offers private and institutional investors global expertise in asset allocation strategies, investment advisory services, equity research, international private banking and trust administration, commercial banking, investment banking, merchant banking, institutional sales and trading, real estate investment and insurance. The company serves clients from 126 countries on six continents.
Securities products and services offered through Stanford Group Company, member NASD/SIPC. More information on the company can be found at www.stanfordfinancial.com.