Barbados: Keeley Holder is the first female and youngest-ever Chief Agricultural Officer of the Ministry of Agriculture & Food Security.
Keeley Holder’s appointment took effect from February 1, 2021. She has a long experience of serving in agriculture, was the Chief Executive Officer of HydroGrow Farm and Go Bananas Inc. Strong Hope, St. Thomas, from the year 2016 to 2018.
Keeley Holder was also a regional consultant with the Food and Agricultural Organization from 2015 to 2016, and again from 2017 to 2018.
From 2011 to 2018, she was a Director of Southern Meats Inc. and a member of the National Agricultural Advisory Commission from 2011 to 2012.
Keeley Holder has also held Vice President of the National Union of Farmers’ position from 2012 until 2018. Additionally, she was 1st Vice President of the Barbados Agricultural Society & President and Vice President of Barbados Fruit & Vegetable Growers from 2008 to 2011.
Ms. Holder holds a BSc. in Biology and Computer Science from The University of the West Indies, Cave Hill Campus, and a Post Graduate Diploma in Crop Production and Water Management from Galilee College, Israel.
During an interview, She stated that she viewed her primary accountability as working to unite the diverse aspects of agriculture and optimizing these to engage the food and nutrition security needs of the public of Barbados, with health and wellness at the core.
People of Barbados congratulated her, and a Facebook user commented, “Congratulations. Great choice. She will be Minister in 5 years. Fully qualified and equipped to do the job.”
Another Facebook user commented, “Didn’t realize Barbados was that country used to these type of headlines coming out of the USA. It must be a slow news day! Congrats anyway, young lady.”
On the other hand, during an interview, Keeley Holder stated, “she is gratified to be in a position to lead agriculture into a new future. We can only develop from strength to strength, working in cooperation and unity as we fight coronavirus, and guarantee food and nutrition security for all.”