Paula Ann Cox, CBE, JP
Former Premier of Bermuda
Paula Cox is a Bermudian politician and former Premier of Bermuda. She has been the leader of the Bermuda Progressive Labour Party (PLP), since 28 October 2010. She was succeeded as Premier by Craig Cannonier on 18 December 2012, when she led her party into election defeat, losing her own seat in the process.
Earl life and education
Paula Cox, the only daughter born to Bermudians C. Eugene and Alinda F. Cox, spent her early years living in Sandys Parish. She attended The Berkeley Institute and later earned a Bachelor of Arts in Political Science from McGill University in Canada, and a post-graduate Diploma in International Law from the University of Manchester. She trained as a Solicitor at the College of Law, Chancery Lane, London, and was called to the Bermuda Bar in January 1992. She received an honorary doctorate in Education at the May 2004 Commencement Exercise of Wheelock College (USA) and more recently, in 2009, was made an Honorary Alumnus of Dalhousie University.
Paula Cox was first elected to Parliament as a Devonshire North MP, in a bye-election in October 1996. This followed the death of the former Opposition Leader, L. Frederick Wade, JP, MP on 13 August 1996. She has had varied experience in Government having held a number of portfolios. She has served in a number of Cabinet portfolios. Under the premiership of the Honourable Jennifer Smith, JP, MP, now Dame Jennifer Smith, Premier Paula Cox was appointed as the first PLP Minister of Labour, Home Affairs and Public Safety. She and her father, the late C. Eugene Cox, JP, MP were unique as both were Ministers in the first PLP administration and the only serving father-daughter duo.
Premier Cox has gained respect across party lines for her brilliance as an articulate young lawyer and administrator. While the Minister of Labour, Home Affairs and Public Safety, she was named in the Bermudians' Best of Bermuda Gold annual listing as the most effective politician for 2001.
She was appointed Minister of Education and Development on November 1, 2001.
Following the July 2003 General Election, Premier Cox was appointed as Attorney-General and Minister of Education. She served in this dual portfolio until January 2004. In 2003 she was again cited in the Bermudian's Best of Gold's annual listing as the most effective politician. This accolade was repeated in 2006 in her capacity as Minister of Finance.
In 2003, while Premier Cox was currently serving as the Attorney-General and Minister of Education and Development, Wheelock College invited Premier Paula Cox to accept an honourary doctorate in Education. Premier Cox received this honourary degree at the May 2004 Wheelock Commencement exercise. In January 2004, after the death of her father, the former Deputy Premier and Minister of Finance, the late C. Eugene Cox, CBE, JP, MP, Premier Paula Cox was appointed the Minister of Finance.
In her professional life, Premier Paula Cox works as a lawyer, is Corporate Counsel, at ACE Limited. She previously worked as Vice President and Senior Legal Counsel of Global Funds Services at The Bank of Bermuda Limited. This impeccable background, allows her to give the PLP Government and Party a strong voice in international financial matters, particularly with her expertise in the field of international law and international business organisation.
Premier Paula Cox for many years was one of the closest aides of the late Opposition Leader, Hon. L. Frederick Wade. She was his first Shadow Parliamentary Secretary, and at the same time the PLP's Public Relations Officer.
Honours and awards
Cox was appointed Commander of the Order of the British Empire (CBE) in the 2014 Birthday Honours for public service in Bermuda.
Premier Cox is the only daughter of retired educator Mrs. F. Alinda Cox. She is married to a businessman from Cameroon, Mr. Germain Nkeuleu and she has two brothers, Jeremy Cox, the Supervisor of Insurance at the Bermuda Monetary Authority and Robert Cox, an electrical engineer, who currently works in the United States.