The Bahamas Financial Services Board (BFSB) is in the 5th year of its Financial Centre Focus (FCF), an ongoing public education and awareness outreach.

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

FCF is sponsored in collaboration with the Professional Industry Association Working Group (PIAWG), a major component in BFSB’s outreach to all stakeholders and gatekeepers in the development of strategies and long-term plans for the industry.

As a main element 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. Categories include Executive of the Year, Professional of the Year, Achiever of the Year – in addition to a Financial Services Development and Promotion Award that is given to an individual or entity.

**MFSI Award**

Since 2002, the Hon. Allyson Maynard-Gibson, Minister of Financial Services and Investments, has presented a special “Minister’s Award” as an integral part of the annual initiative. Selection is based on excellence in financial services and Minister Maynard-Gibson says awardees “exemplify excellence in all of its aspects and go above and beyond the call of duty.”

**2005 Programme**

This year, the Excellence Awards Banquet will be held on October 8 and BFSB has closed nominations for candidates. Nominations were open to the entire financial services industry including industry regulatory and supervisory agencies. A Blue Ribbon Panel will select the award recipients, who will be announced for the first time at the Awards Banquet in October.

**Financial Services Student of the Year**

Also to be announced at the upcoming Banquet will be the College of the Bahamas (COB) Graduate selected as *FSI Student of the Year*. Sponsored in conjunction with COB, this programme recognises outstanding performance by students in financial services disciplines, primarily from the School of Business.