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Jun 21, 2019

Belizean Coast Guard Female Lieutenant Makes History

Lieutenant Alma Pinelo received the honor graduate award after she successfully completed the International Maritime Officer Course at the U.S Coast Guard Training Center in Virginia, U.S.A. Lieutenant Pinelo is the first Belizean and the first female to receive this prestigious award, as a result her name and country will be enshrined into the Honor Graduates Hall of Fame. Pinelo spent four months at the training course and returns to work on Monday. Today, we spoke with a very proud Captain Elton Bennett of the Belize Coast Guard. He tells us more about Pinelo’s achievement.


On the Phone: Captain Elton Bennett, Vice-Commandant, Belize Coast Guard

“Lieutenant Alma Pinelo received an award at the U.S Coast Guard International Maritime Masters Course. It is an undergraduate award so that is an award that is given to the top student in the course. I believe there is something about thirty students enrolled in the course from different countries. All Coast Guard and naval officers participate in different subject matter in the coast guard field ranging from maritime law enforcement, policy, media relations, fisheries and enforcement and a wide range of coast guard responsibilities. So, she was there for the past four months doing this course. It is a very interesting course and is a part of the Belize Coast Guard career development courses for quite some time now and she went on the course and she did well. She excelled and topped the course.”


Andrea Polanco

“This is such good news for the Belize Coast Guard?”


On the Phone: Captain Elton Bennett

“Definitely. It is very good for us. Not only is she the first Belizean to have won this award but she is the first female world-wide to receive this award. So, we are very proud that Belize was able to participate at this level and to be able to put a woman up front and for her to top the course. It is a huge accomplishment. The course is running for about twenty years now and this is the first time a female has topped the course, so we are very proud to be the country to have put forward a female to have accomplished this significant achievement.”

Viewers please note: This Internet newscast is a verbatim transcript of our evening television newscast. Where speakers use Kriol, we attempt to faithfully reproduce the quotes using a standard spelling system.

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