Meet the newcomers: Edwards - hope to restore trust and belief of the people
Political newcomer Lisa-Ann Edwards hopes to restore harmony, safety and security to all the communities of North East St Andrew, by facilitating opportunities and resources for a greater sense of confidence and self-esteem within and without. She will be challenging the Jamaica Labour Party's Delroy Chuck at the February 25 polls.
A strategic planner, policy analyst and business development consultant. As a young girl, Edwards, was always an avid reader who benefitted from a primary school system. Even as a child she was one of the frequent contributors to the Gleaner's Children's Own finding an avenue for her expressions and opinions. She attended St. Hugh High where she participated in the Junior Achievement Club, school choir and drama club. She completed sixth form and entered the University of the West Indies where she read for a Bachelor of Arts Degree majoring in History and graduated with honours. Miss Edwards considers herself a serious Pan Africanist who is actively aware of the struggles of our past ancestors and sacrifices made by them to afford ourselves the opportunities that we now have.
She then went to work in the private sector focusing on banking but her desire to serve the people lead her into the public sector at a young age. Miss Edwards was one of the youngest contracted directors in the civil service. Her job allowed her the opportunity to contribute to the planning process of Government and seeking specifically an alignment of programs and budgetary allocations. Miss Edwards also completed a course as a policy analyst at the Government training program known as Management Institute for National Development (MIND). A Commonwealth executive saw her going to Canada to York University - Schulich School of Business to complete a short course.
It was there that she was able to network with many Commonwealth executives in their respective civil sectors in countries such as Zimbabwe, Nigeria, St. Kitts and Nevis and St. Lucia amongst others.
Her propensity for reading and writing lead her to the Ministry of Health where she drafted the national HIV policy. She was also integral as the team leader for the proposal to the Global Fund with specific responsibility for advocacy and policy.
In 2004 she completed a Masters of Science at the University of the West Indies with specific focus on human resource development.
Her realization that the poor and disposed were in need of greater levels of representation led her to be the candidate in the Guys Hill Division in North East St. Catherine for four years. She was instrumental in energizing and galvanizing the division and carried it through into a period of significant growth and development.
Her ability to multi task is evident in that she completed another degree from the University of the West Indies this time a Bachelors of Law with honours.
This was encouraged by the inherent gaps in the level of representation for the disposed and underrepresented in this country which created the need for her to seek other avenues to bolster her ability to cater for this group. Once again demonstrating the unwavering ability to juggle competing interests and remain true to her cause.
A natural step in the trajectory of politics was her acceptance to be the standard bearer Member of Parliament for St. Andrew North Eastern.
The decision whilst appearing daunting to some is just yet another proof of her tenacity and commitment to the people of the county. She believes that she is the leader will restore trust and belief of the people and help to rebuild St. Andrew North Eastern.
In this constituency she had identified main areas of focus such as education and training, encouraging and facilitating business development, job creation linkages, peace and security, maintaining clean communities, formalizing and improving housing with access roads and infrastructure improvement.