Photo: H.E. Dame Froyla Tzalam, Governor General of Belize congratulating an awardee
by Kristen Ku
BELIZE CITY, Thurs. Sept. 14, 2023
Twenty-five distinguished Belizeans were honored at this year’s Tribute to Belizean Patriots ceremony on September 13, 2023, at Battlefield Park in Belize City.
The National Honours and Awards Act of 1991 states that such honors/awards are presented to those who have significantly contributed to Belize.
This year, the Meritorious Service Award was bestowed upon 25 Belizeans who have excelled in diverse fields, including culture, education, sports, business, community outreach, and environmental protection.
“Through their efforts, these modern-day patriots light the path that we all strive to venture on—a path to selflessness. I thank these individuals for their dedication to the Land of the Free,” remarked H.E. Dame Froyla Tzalam, Governor General of Belize, at the ceremony.
Following are the lists of recipients for the Meritorious Service Award for Female and Males.
Meritorious Service Award – Female: Lilia “Lily” Bowman – Community Service; Ignacia Herlinda Arana – Education; Myrtle Palacio – Community and Public Service; Maria Chang – Business and Community Service; Naria Pickwoad – Culture (Cuisine) and Entrepreneurship; Jane Locario – Education and Community Service; Claudette Hulse, Ofelia Chiac, Olga Gordon – Community Service; Anita Tzib – Education; Eliza Arnold – Sports; Gwendolyn Margaret Lizarraga (posthumous) – Community Service.
Meritorious Service Award – Male: Walter Brown – Community and Public Service; Allan Sharp – Sports; Guerra brothers (posthumous, Kevin and Kenneth), Dr. Gregorio Garcia – Medical Field and COVID Pandemic Contributions; Eugenio Ah, Narciso Torres, Eworth Garbutt – Environment; Thomas Oliver, Basilio Novelo – Education; Dion Flowers (posthumous) – Sports. In a special gesture, former U.S. President Jimmy Carter was awarded the Order of Belize, honoring his longstanding friendship with and support to the country.
The ceremony culminated with H.E. Dame Froyla Tzalam presenting the awardees with their ribbons and plaques. She was later joined by the Prime Minister of Belize, Hon. John Briceño, in celebrating the event’s success.