Bishop Joseph Junior Sylvester Atherley, MP
Leader of the Opposition, Barbados
Joseph Junior Sylvester Atherley is a Barbadian minister of religion, politician, and acurrent Member of Parliament.
Early life and education
Joseph Junior Sylvester Atherley was born on 26 February 1954 in Barbados. He received his early education at the Federal High School in Barbados, before moving on to Christian Union Church of the West Indies Bible College, Chapel Christian University (USA), University of the West Indies – Cave Hill Campus (Barbados), and the Haggai Leadership Training Institute (Singapore).
Joseph Atherley, Senior Minister of the Better Life Assembly, has been a devoted member of the Evangelical Holiness Christian Community for the past 30 years. He is also the regional head of the Christian Union Church of the West Indies and a board member for several regional and international Christian organisations.
Atherley was the first Christian Minister elected to serve in Parliament in post-Independence Barbados.
As a Member of Parliament for St. Michael West (1999-2008), Atherley was Parliamentary Secretary in the Office of The Attorney General and Ministry of Home Affairs, and Minister of State in the Office of the Prime Minister in the OWen Arthur Administration.
Atherley lost in his re-election bid in 2008 to current Speaker of the House of Assembly, Michael Carrington of the Democratic Labour Party (DLP) in 2008. He recaptured the seat in the 2018 election.
On 31 May 2018, Atherley informed Prime Minister Mia Mottley of his intention to serve in Opposition to the BLP Government. As the only member on the opposiiton benches, Atherely was sworn in as Leader of the Opposition on 1 June 2018.
Atherley is the father of two boys. An avid cricket lover and an international affairs enthusiast, Rev. Atherley lives in Government Hill, St. Michael with his wife of 31 years and son.