**Financial Centre Focus**

The Bahamas Financial Services Board (BFSB) has launched the 4th year of its “Financial Centre Focus” (FCF) programme.

This initiative was developed in 2001 to profile the industry and to co-ordinate a series of programmes relating to human resource development — a key component in the continued success of The Bahamas as an international financial services centre.

A Professional Industry Association Working Group (PIAWG) was launched in 2001 as well, constituting a major element in BFSB’s outreach to all stakeholders and gatekeepers in the development of strategies and long-term plans for the industry. The annual FCF has been sponsored in collaboration with the PIAWG.

**Annual Awards Programme**

As an integral part of the FCF, BFSB introduced the ***Financial Services Industry Excellence Awards***, designed to recognise role models in the industry for outstanding performance and contribution to the growth and development of financial services in The Bahamas. To date, the awardees have been:

**Executive of the Year**

• Betty Roberts, Managing Director, SG Hambros Bank & Trust (Bahamas) Limited (2001)
• G. Clifford Culmer, FCA, Partner, BDO Mann Judd (2002)
• Heather Lynette Thompson, Partner, Higgs & Johnson (2003)

**Professional of the Year**

• Cecile B. Greene, CA, FLMI, Vice President, Finance, Family Guardian Insurance Company (2001)
• Joan L. Thompson, Corporate Secretary/Manager-Corporate Department, MeesPierson (Bahamas) Limited (2002)
• Cheryl E. Major-Bazard, Director of Compliance Professionals (Regional Position), FirstCaribbean International Bank (2003)

**Achiever of the Year**

• Alden Gibson, Senior Client Accountant, Credit Suisse Trust Limited (2001)
• Rayon A. Brown, Associate Actuary, Family Guardian Insurance Company (2002)
• Alicetine Newbold, Office Administrator, Arner Bank & Trust (2003)

**Innovation in Financial Services**

BFSB is pleased this year to introduce a new category to the 2004 Financial Services Industry Excellence Awards programme – **The Financial Services Business Development Award** – recognising innovation in business development. As such, this award will pay tribute to a firm or individual for entrepreneurial undertaking(s) promoting the viability and strength of the sector. This can include, but not be limited to, new business expansion, the creation of niche markets, or the development of new marketing efficiencies.

The 4th ***Industry Excellence Awards Banquet*** will be held on October 16, and BFSB has now opened nominations for candidates in each of the four categories above. Nominations are open to the entire financial services industry, including industry regulatory and supervisory agencies.

A Blue Ribbon Panel of judges will select the award recipients, who will be announced for the first time at the Awards Banquet in October.

Nominations may be mailed, hand delivered, or forwarded by email or fax to reach the office no later than September 17, 2004. See below for the guidelines and nominations forms in each of the categories.