PLP: Linda Merritt In Smiths South

December 8, 2011

[Updated with video] This afternoon [Dec.8] the Progressive Labour Party held a press conference and announced that Linda Merritt will represent them in Constituency #8 Smiths South.

Ms. Merritt attended Temple University in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania and went on to earn her Bachelor of Arts degree in Business administration and Communication from Concordia University in Wisconsin. Additionally, she received insurance industry designations in the areas of group health, individual health and life.

She has been a Member of the US National Council of Negro Women (NCNW), Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority, United Way of St. Louis and Rockford, IL, and the Urban League of St. Louis. She has served as Vice Chairman, PRIDE Bermuda, Secretary General the PLP, served as a Member of the Immigration Board, Chairman of the Air Advisory Committee, and presently serves as Chairman of the Bermuda Health Council.

Ms. Merritt previously served as a candidate for the PLP in 2007, running in Devonshire South Central where she received 14.39% of the vote against the UBP’s John Barritt.

Smiths South is presently held by the One Bermuda Alliance’s Cole Simons who – under the UBP – won 73.47% of the vote against the PLP’s Jane Correia [673-243] in 2007. In 2003, Mr Simons picked up 638 votes, with the PLP’s Elizabeth Christopher receiving 226.

Both the island’s major parties have been rolling out candidates in recent weeks. A General Election has not yet been called but if the Premier intends to take the island to the polls in 2011, she must make the announcement by tomorrow [Dec.9], as a minimum of three-weeks notice must be given. Once a date is announced, Parliament is dissolved and the General Election writ is filed.

Update 2.10pm: 14-minute video of the press conference

Update 3.04pm: Ms. Merritt’s full statement below:

Good afternoon,

Welcome to everyone who is here today. Thank you Premier and Party Leader for your kind introduction. I acknowledge the Chairman of constituency eight, Mr. Shawn Outerbridge, and branch members.

I ask you today to identify with me some of the characteristics of a qualified candidate in today’s challenging environment: it is my opinion the person must be considered an optimist, a person of integrity, a listener, and innovative.

As Winston Churchill is noted to have said, “A pessimist sees the difficulty in every opportunity; an optimist sees the opportunity in every difficulty”.

It gives me great pleasure today to be affirmed by the party and Constituency 8 as their approved candidate for Smith’s South and to represent the Bermuda Progressive Labour Party.

My professional career began in the USA as a managing director for a leading Fortune 1000 company and while living in the USA my experience in leadership, and being known as a change agent opened many doors for me in my professional career, as well as, with NGOs.

It is my belief that commitment to constructive change ‘beyond ‘ the boardroom is critical to progressive communities and I am pleased that the PLP has continued to be welcoming to persons who hold the worldview of progressive social and economic change for Bermuda.

And, in fact, continues to build on the legacy of the founding members of the PLP. The PLP is not a static organization; it is robust, dynamic, and intelligent and continues to evolve.

My civic commitment continues in Bermuda as I offer my depth of experience, my passion for people, and my skill sets to various volunteer entities to enable change in our communities.

Presently, I am serving my second term as Chairman of the Bermuda Health Council. By sharing this limited exposure to my qualifications and competencies it is my hope to give to you a window into my character and my experience.

As it relates to my intention for all the residents in Smith’s South I will be accessible, transparent and operate with integrity. (My agenda is not secret; it is a selfless act of asking to serve you.) I am here to serve.

The primary benefit for the residents of Constituency 8 to vote for me lies in the knowledge that you will now have a meaningful voice in government; a person who will be diligent and sincere in raising your concerns to the Party.

Any voters in any country want to have a government that will not shy away from the tough issues, or retreat in tough times, and the PLP Government is demonstrating that it has the courage, tenacity, experience and fortitude for these times. It goes without saying that quiet assertiveness and courage, with openness to innovation and ideas will help to propel us into a position, which benefits our children and island home.

Hence, we must move forward with a positive inclusive attitude stitched with wisdom NOW for our Bermuda.

Again, one must ask, what are the qualities of the persons we need to guide us through these times? Men and women of integrity; thoughtful and strategic leaders; prayerful people; visionaries and out of the box thinkers, that is, as Einstein is famously quoted ‘we can’t solve problems with the same thinking which generated the problem’.

I ask with all sincerity for your vote and that you use your freedom to vote with a good conscious and in good faith because I am the better candidate. You will in return have a person with demonstrated servant leadership skills, a collaborator, an inclusionary individual, a listener, and a forward-thinker who will work for Bermuda and her interests.

In closing, thank you Party Leader and the candidates committee for this opportunity and the media in attendance today

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Comments (37)

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  1. Independent says:

    Congrats to you Ms. Merritt!

  2. Triangle Drifter says:

    She seems to be shuffled around from place to place where she does not have a hope of being elected. Just a face to put on the ballot. Course if you want to be elected, you need to canvas. Never saw her, or any PLP rep last time around in Devonshire South central.

    • Hmmmmm says:

      Bit like Hunt, Pettingill and Crockwell. Three Parties, two constituencies (three for one) in four years.Boll weevil…..

      • Triangle Drifter says:

        Watch where you throw those stones from inside your glass house.

  3. The Rock says:

    Who.. is this roody poo?!

  4. deshawn says:

    Good move there!

  5. sigh says:

    This week 2 more good candidates from the PLP in Linda Merritt and Diallo Rabain!

    On another note – no OBA announcements this week?

  6. Honestly says:


    • You must have been reading my mind. Irrespective of who is being rolled out there are those who have nothing positive to say.Sad.

  7. THE HELL!! says:

    Where in the world are they finding these … I don’t know what to call them … “candidates”? It’s frightening to think what will happen if they win the next election. Are you kidding me?

    • PEPPER says:

      But on the other hand, look who some of the O.B.A. candidates are…. we surely are doomed.

  8. wallawalla says:

    I would have left out the part saying she had anything to do with the immigration board. Anyone that has ever had to get a passpord renewed or had any dealings with that government department will tell you there has been no progress made there in the last 13 years. Its worse than ever!!!! If she couldnt make a sinple advancement in a broken department how can I be convinced that she can help fix Bermuda Inc.

    • WallawallaLies says:

      In the last 13 years? Seriously you clowns are reaching! I know one thing she can run circles around Cannonier any day!

  9. wallawalla says:

    Sorry…didn’t mean to be completely negative…she is a good person and hard worker. I have met her before. I’m just not convinced she has what it takes

  10. alicia says:

    I live in smith’s south and I have not seen her wandering around yet. I’ll be surprised if she campaignes very hard at all considering that there are a lot of health care professionals that live in smiths south and Ms. Merritt is trying to launch a national health plan that most health care professionals are against… she’s been set up to lose.

    • LaVerne Furbert says:

      Alicia, what do you mean there are a lot of “health care professionals living in Smiths South”? Are they doctors, nurses, nurses aides, x-ray technicians, orderlies. Your comment really doesn’t make sense. Ms. Merritt was just announced today. I’m sure she’ll be knocking on your door in Smith’s South.

  11. Itsaboutallofus says:

    Another good candidate from the PLP. it is interesting how many haters are out there.

    • Mad Dawg says:

      What we ‘hate’ are disingenuous comments intended to make a resume sound better.

  12. Triangle Drifter says:

    Impressive! Ms Merritt STARTED her career as managing director of a LEADING fortune 1000 company.

    That really means the company ranked somewhere between 500 & 1000 in terms of annual revenues. she must have some talent to start as Managing Director. Nobody in the OBA can make such a claim.

    With such a gifted person in their ranks why has she not been parachuted into a PLP safe seat?

    One also has to wonder why she would be back in Bermuda? As managing director of one of the top 1000 companies in the US she could fly into Bermuda anytime she wishes on her own private jet. Why give that up?

    Whatever the reason, kudos for wishing to serve.

    • HMMM HMMMMM says:

      It would be interesting to find out which fortune 1000 company? Maybe not all that important I know …but would be interesting.

    • confused says:

      the title of managing director covers a wide multitude of positions .. not all of them near the top of the corporate ladder. i can assure you she did not start her professional career anywhere near the office of ceo.

      • Triangle Drifter says:

        Well that is not the impression she gives in her introduction of herself. Her words. A somewhat deceitful way of presenting oneself.

        Not unusual for the PLP. They like to deceive & stretch the realms of truth & have an extensive record of doing so.

        The gullible drink it up. The rest of us question what does not look above board.

        • Mad Dawg says:

          It’s a bit like someone claiming they “went to Harvard”, when all they did was attend a 3-week executive course.

 why does that example sound so familiar…?

    • Rick Rock says:

      Some people work for years to become Managing Directors, but she was given that position right out of school? Wow. She must have been great at the interview.

      I find her Einstein quote very interesting: “We can’t solve problems with the same thinking which generated the problem”. I think she is suggesting, with help from Einstein, that we get rid of the current government as quickly as possible.

      • Triangle Drifter says:

        That quote caught my attention too. First thought was, if that is how you think, why in the world would you be joining the PLP?

  13. PLP Government Worker says:

    Linda Merrit as a Candidate to represent who?

    Paula, cut the foolishness Lady.

  14. LOL (original) says:

    I find her to be very American. Seems some people like that in a leader………


  15. Bewildered says:

    A Managing Director of a Fortune 1000 company straight from University? Highly unlikely therefore she is being, polititely, economical with the truth. We had to deceive lives on.

    Of course if she was indeed an MD straight from University, her brilliance should be rewarded with the Minister of Finance’s Constituency so Bermuda can have the benefit of her incredible skills.

  16. what the hell says:

    “It goes without saying that quiet assertiveness and courage, with openness to innovation and ideas will help to propel us into a position, which benefits our children and island home.”

    On the same day Cablevision was denied an upgrade to their internet service…..Pricless

  17. Ganja Mon says:

    Wow..The tea party went hard in this thread. Typical when the title has “PLP” in it..smh

    • LOL (original) says:

      Tea Party………

      Look in the mirror even other black people on this island know where the true “tea party” is every Monday night………………….


      • Makai Dickerson says:

        Who meets every Monday LOL (originl)? And what do you mean by “even other black people on this island know”?

  18. specialgirl4you says:

    Congratulations Linda Merritt, you are another outstanding candidate for the PLP. It is evident that PLP have a large pool of excellent candidates to choose from. This will make your detractors upset, but stay focus on the take ahead of you. Continue to work hard to serve the people of Bermuda. Ms Merritt you have all the skills required to move Bermuda forward into the future. I am pleased with the selection of candidates that are rolled out by the PLP, youth & experience building a better Bermuda.

    • Bewildered says:

      Well said Betty.

    • Triangle Drifter says:

      Betty, do you have a template where you simply have to fill in the blank fields & then post? do you have any idea of the details of these candidates resumes, good or bad?

      I don’t care which party. I want to know who they really are, what their work hisory is & what they have done in life?

      • LOL (original) says:

        Betty is a programmed robot (PR) ………………….