Nevis Woman Is The First Female Supreme Court Master

Charlestown, Nevis (April, 20, 2007)

Another Nevisian has joined the ranks of the legal fraternity in the Caribbean, this time it’s Ms. Pearletta Lanns of Hanleys Road in Gingerland. She said she was humbled with the news of her appointment which would take effect from May 01, 2007.
Ms. Lanns, the first female in the Federation to be appointed to the position, told the Department of Information during an interview on Friday April 20, 2007, that the humbleness that she felt upon learning of her new appointment stemmed from the realisation that although she had been called to served at a higher level she remained a servant of the people.
“I felt proud of my career, I have performed in various roles and have gained a vast amount of experience and have grown in stature in the performance of those roles. As registrar I have seen judges at work, I have seen Masters at work, I have observed what to do and what to say and I have gained a lot of knowledge which I think will be an asset to me as I undertake my new role as Master,” she said.As a Master, Ms. Lanns would exercise functions conferred on her by the Court’s order. She would have the authority to handle any matter that a Judge could do in Chambers but she would not be able to conduct proceedings in open Court.
Her duties would take her to other territories as assigned by the Chief Justice. The existing schedule will take her to Anguilla, the British Virgin Islands, Montserrat, St. Kitts, Nevis and Dominica. Her first tour of duty is slated for Dominica in May.
According to Ms. Lanns, her interest in Law grew when she worked at the Public Library in St. Kitts. The Library at the time had an inner room which overlooked the proceedings in the Court Room below which allowed officers of the Library to observe the proceedings as they went on.
In 1985 on completion of her Library degree she said the then Resident Tutor at the University of the West Indies’s University Centre in St. Kitts Mr. Constantine Richardson, encouraged her to join the Challenge Programme which had offered a first year Law LLB of the degree programme.
She later obtained her legal education certificate in 1995 from the Sir Hugh Wooding Law School in Trinidad and Tobago and was admitted to the Bar in the Federation that same year.
In her Law career so far, Ms. Lanns served as Crown Counsel, Registrar of Companies, registrar of the High Court, Provost Marshall, Additional Magistrate, Deputy Registrar of the Court of Appeal, registrar of lands and Deeds, registrar of probate and Registrar of Intellectual Property.
Meantime, she urged young women to have a positive attitude and outlook on life to make women proud.
“There was a time when women did not dominate a lot of high positions but now that is changing. Men are now being marginalised and women are in the forefront out there and holding their own.
“I would wish to encourage all young persons to develop a positive attitude, to ensure that they make women proud because we [women] know we still have a long way to go in terms of holding certain positions that have been designated for men”¦Anyone who wants to succeed would have to be prepared to work hard, they would have to be self motivated and they have to want to succeed and to work towards that,” she said.
The first Nevisian appointed to the post of Master of the Supreme Court was Mr. Hugh Rawlins of Rawlins in Gingerland. He has since been promoted to the position of Justice of Appeal of the Eastern Caribbean Supreme Court.

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