Free Essay

First President of Trinidad and Tobago

In: People

Submitted By sharris
Words 1761
Pages 8
Topic: What does it mean to have power and how can it be used to both uplift and demise a leader?

Date: 20th July 2012

All about Sir. Ellis Clarke.
Sir. Ellis Clarke was indeed a remarkable man who served his country and his fellows in a way that persons, could only speak of his excellent mannerisms and refer to him as a perfect gentleman.
Ellis Emmanuel Innocent Clarke, was born in Belmont, on the 28th December 1917. He attended St. Mary’s college, Port-Of-Spain, where he won an island scholarship in the field of Mathematics. He continued pursuing his education at the University of London. Here, his mind was set on serving his emerging nation, because as a teenager, he witnessed the horrors of the Great Depression and the Second World War, which spared neither king nor commoner. The economic state of the world influenced him to study law, specializing in constitutional law. He was called to bar at Gray’s Inn London in 1941, he then returned to Port-Of-Spain, Trinidad to start his private practice.
Clarke served as Solicitor General from 1954-1956, Deputy Colonial secretary 1956-1957, Attorney General 1957-1962, along with serving in the cabinet as a constitutional advisor. After independence, in 1962 he served as an ambassador to the United States, Canada and Mexico, and a Permanent representative to the United Nations. When Trinidad and Tobago became a Republic in 1976, Clarke was unanimously elected to be the country’s first President, by the President Electoral College. He held this position until he completed his second term in office in 1987. Ellis was awarded a knighthood as a knight Grand Cross of the order in 1962. Although he ceased to use the title “Sir.” after the country became a republic; since retirement from the presidency, he has re-adopted his title and has generally been referred to as “Former President, Sir. Ellis.” His Leadership Style and its Impact.
Many would agree, Sir. Ellis Shared and empowered those around him. His voice was the voice of reason, to calm us when we had doubts, he unfailingly met our various needs and did so with a high sense of decorum and dignity. It was also with saying, Sir. Ellis Clarke was a true participative leader. He adopted anyone under his wings and taught them the skills which would be necessary to get the job done. He did all this and still showed the utmost care and kindness.. Performing these simple acts made him even more loved by his people. His involvement with the Corpus Christi College is invaluable to those involved with the school. He organized with the Corpus Christi Fanatics to perform at a family celebration, which ultimately propelled them forward and into the spotlight. He was one of the main architects of Trinidad and Tobago’s 1962 independence consultation. Sir. Ellis Clarke, though it could be said that he walked with kings and queens, he never forgot where he began his journey. Sir. Ellis exemplified, being completely human and Trinidadian/ Tobagonian to the crux, by never foregoing an opportunity to express in the joys of life, the social and sporting events and very humane interactions with his friends and the ordinary people he met throughout his life. Sir. Ellis Clarke carried that torch of being an exceptional, people oriented leader and carried the title well. He will always and forever be in our hearts as an icon; a patriot; a man of great wisdom, firm principles; integrity, judgement and character; a man personified dignity, dedication, discipline and humanity. Impact of Leadership Style
Recognizing the influential impact of his inspiration and contribution over ,the years, Sir Ellis was specially honoured, repeatedly by the principal ,staff and students by the Corpus Christi College .At a Thanksgiving celebration ,tributes were paid to him by students, the teaching and auxiliary staff and other members of the Corpus Christi family ,he was presented with the school library being named after him, the Sir Ellis Clarke library .
Sir Ellis Clarke always reverted to his spiritual ways for this he was known, he also found time to support the Alma Mater.In 1997, and he was chosen by the past students of College of the Immaculate Conception to be inducted into the St Mary’s Hall of Fame. He made staples on the life of Trinidadian and Tobagonian nationals, with his passing countless diplomats, politicians and a number of Trinidad and Tobago finest attended. President George Maxwell Richards, former President and Prime Minister Arthur N R Robinson, Monsignor Culbert Alexander of the Catholic Church had only good things to say about Sir Ellis. Oddly ,enough, the mass of persons that attended the funeral ,what they said truly allowed one to envision the type of person he was; talking about his personal dignity ,how he upheld his friendly personality and cared for all he never diverted from the ethical values he sought to live by. Having said all of this about him truly showed how he impacted onto the nation, how we can truly deem him, the grandfather of the nation.
Uplift and Demise of a leader
Sir Ellis Clarke’s greatest achievements would have been being knighted; a unique honour and he experienced this on three separate occasions by the Queen of England. Due to his early experiences from the Great Depression and World, it impacted upon him and so it begun the constitutional and political development of Trinidad and Tobago, though these times would have influenced a deter in career to me it so pulled Sir Ellis Clarke to the forefront, allowing him to realise more that his place is with serving the nation.
Even during his time at Gray’s Inn, London, he literally dodged Hitler’s bombs during the Second World War all of these committed to unceasingly toiling, which elevated him to premier positions in moving the nation toward independence. His insistence. prevailed, over the last few years, on the urgency of the constitutional reform, is all the more striking since was the principal architect of the 1962 Independence Constitution and of the Republican Constitution in 1976.In his progressive view, those constitutions were applicable but he voiced the urgency for an update to satisfy the changing socio-political environment .He realised that his knowledge enabled him to do this and so he did.
As leader, not very many know that Sir Ellis had the regular habited of sustained, silent prayerful reflection. A broader and deeper portrait of him only emerges in the sustained exchanges he had with colleagues and friends, he always held the view that life should be enjoyed fully.
Sir Ellis Quote
Sir Ellis had a change face for every walk of life, and that from politics, to church life to everyday life, Sir Ells adapted to suite. He was the perfect gentleman one could say even with his outstanding achievements and his undoubted prominence; he maintained humility and a common touch. Sir Ellis could have been described as man who genuinely loved life and he was a firm believer in that it was just as important to work hard as it was to relax after labours. He once said in his, “Eat, drink and be merry, but when that plane is taking off for heaven make sure you are not left in the departure lounge.”Those words he surely lived by. To me I interpret the quote as, we all have a purpose to be here on earth to fulfil dreams, have aspirations, take risks and perform adventures with our lives but if we do not take stock of ourselves and realise this too late, then it will only be too late for us to change anything, we should not live in life of regret, with thinking about what we could have, should have and the events that many limit us.
With reference to the book Exploring Leadership (Komives,Lucas & McMhon,1998) .Individuals involved in the leadership process,(leadership. members ,co creators and so on ) need to know themselves well before they can effectively work with others to influence change or achieve common purpose. It is not enough to simply drive an agenda or accomplish small or big wins.The leadership process calls for those engaged in it to be knowledgably (knowing),to be aware of self and others (being) and to act ( doing).The knowing-being-doing model represents a holistic approach to the leadership development of yourself and others. These three are interrelated- the knowledge you possess can influence your ways of thinking, which can influence your actions. It is also true that your beliefs and way of existing in this world (being) can influence your actions, which can influence your behaviours.
Leading by Example
As an exercise, a leader and participant must ponder r soul-researching questions such as, what do I stand for? How far am i willing to go to advance the common good or to do the right thing? Based on their research to leaders, Kouzes and Posner (1987) propose five practices of exemplary leadership .One of these practices is “Modelling the ways “ or practicing what ones preaches. Leaders “show other by their own example that they live by the values that they profess” (p.187).What one stands for provides a prism through which all behaviour is ultimately viewed”. In conclusion, in addition to Sir Ellis Clarke being a perfect gentleman, he was a well-respected and efficient leader, who showed compassion and integrity when he was in power. He was charismatic and well-liked and most importantly he made sure the needs of his people were met without ever acting as though he was above the citizens of his country. He will always be remembered as a pioneer in Trinidadian history transitioning Trinidad from a constitutional monarchy to a republic.
Sources of Cites of Work.
- Kormives Susan, Nance Lucas, and Timothy McMahon. "The Relational Leadership Model." Exploring Leadership. 2nd ed. San Francisco: Jossey Bass, 2007. 76+. Print.
-National Library and Information System Authority. "Biographies A-C." Biographies A-C. National Library and Information System Authority, n.d. Web. 24 July 2012. <>.
-Guardian Media Limited. "Farewell, Sir Ellis Clarke." The Trinidad Guardian Newspaper. Guardian Media Limited, 8 Jan. 2011. Web. 24 July 2012. <>
-Asktrini International. "Sir Ellis Clark." Asktrini. Asktrini International, n.d. Web. 24 July 2012. <>.

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