DR. DAVID Panton without doubt is the Opposition Jamaica Labour Party's (JLP) young, bright spark. Three years ago he burst onto the political scene and immediately captured the imagination of those searching for that special political leader who embodies hope.
For his outstanding contribution to the party, especially in the election campaign, Dr. Panton has been named to the Senate by Opposition Leader Edward Seaga.
When he joined the JLP, Dr. Panton, now 30, brought with him a youthful energy and brightness that has helped to reshape the image of the party and position him as one of its potential leaders sometime down the road.
A business executive and an attorney-at-law, Dr. Panton was educated at Belair Preparatory School; Lomond Elementary School, Ohio, US; Belair High School; Princeton University; Harvard Law School; and Oxford University.
Dr. Panton, who was the 1993 Jamaican Rhodes Scholar, served as chairman of the Anti-Dumping Commission (1998-1999).
He is the founder and managing director of Caribbean Equity partners, an investment firm, since 1998. He has also served as director of CMP Industries Ltd; Cara Holdings Ltd.; Cashoo Ostrich Park Ltd; and Barkeith Ltd.
In 2000, he co-founded Generation 2000, a group of young professionals aligned to the JLP. The group, chaired by Dr. Panton, has been credited with carrying out substantial research in formulating policies for the party and has played a big hand in raising funds for election campaign.
Last year the group did substantial on-the-ground work in helping Shahine Robinson to defeat the People's National Party's Carol Jackson in the North East St. Ann by-election.
It played a critical role in the recent general election, providing support for the party in formulating its manifesto. It was also instrumental in the JLP's election advertising campaign.
Dr. Panton, was born to the Rev. Dr. Keith Panton, retired business executive and Minister of Religion, and Barbara Panton, retired nurse. The young Panton is married to former Miss World, Lisa Hanna. The couple has a son.