Sir Hugh Anthony Rawlins
Chief Justice of the Eastern Caribbean Supreme Court
Sir Hugh Anthony Rawlins is the former Chief Justice of the Eastern Caribbean Supreme Court.
Early life and education
Rawlins is native of Saint Kitts and Nevis, having been born on Nevis. He received his early education in schools in Gingerland, Nevis and his Secondary education at the Charlestown Secondary School, Nevis and the St. Kitts/Nevis Grammar School/Basseterre Senior High School, St. Kitts.
Sir Hugh received a BA (Hons.) in 1974 and an LLB (Hons.) in 1983 both from the University of the West Indies. In 1985, he received the LEC from the Norman Manley Law School in Jamaica, with Honorable Mention in his final year of study. He was the recipient of a UNITAR Fellowship at The Hague Academy of International Law in the Netherlands and a Commonwealth Fellowship at the University of the West Indies, during which me he completed his LLM in 1988, he attended the Institute of Advanced Legal Studies at the University of London and studied Legislative Drafting, Administrative Law and Constitutional Law under Sir William Dale, the Director of the Institute and renowned former Chief Parliamentary Counsel of England.
He was first a teacher at the Charlestown Secondary, the Basseterre Senior High and the Sandy Point High Schools before entering the Civil Service of St. Ki‑s and Nevis in 1976.
From 1976 to 1985, he was an Assistant Secretary in the Ministry of Agriculture, Housing and Labour of St. Kitts and Nevis. During this time, he acted as the Permanent Secretary in that Ministry, as well as in the Ministry of Communications, Post and Public Utilities on various occasions. He also acted as Head of the Department of Labour.
From 1985 to 1988, Sir Hugh was a Crown Counsel of St. Kitts and Nevis. During the period 1988 to 1989, he held the position of Registrar of the High Court of St. Kitts and Nevis and Additional Magistrate, appointed with full responsibility for District ‘B’, St. Kitts, which included the area from Palmeto Point through Old Road, Sandy Point, Newton Ground, St. Paul’s, Dieppe Bay, Parsons’, Saddlers, Tabernacle to Molineux.
He was Solicitor General and Permanent Secretary in the Legal Department of St. Kitts and Nevis from October 1989 to January 1995. He then became a full me Lecturer in Law at the University of the West Indies for the next 5 years, following a temporary stint there in 1994.
Sir Hugh joined the Eastern Caribbean Supreme Court in August 2000 as a Master to assist with the implementation of the New Civil Practice Rules, 2000. He was appointed as a High Court Judge in January 2002 and was elevated to the Office of Justice of the Court of Appeal in September 2005.
He acted in the Office of Chief Justice of the Court from 29 April 2008, and was confirmed in the Office of Chief Justice by Her Majesty, the Queen, on the unanimous recommendation of the Heads of Government of the nine Member States of the Organization of Eastern Caribbean on 30 May 2008.
On 1 August 2012, Sir Hugh retired from the Office of Chief Justice of the Eastern Caribbean Supreme Court. During his tenure as Chief Justice, he was ex officio, the Chairman of the Judicial and Legal Services Commissions of the Eastern Caribbean Supreme Court, and of the Virgin Islands and Anguilla. He was also a member of the Regional Judicial and Legal Services Commission of the Caribbean Court of Justice from 28 January 2010 until he retired.
On his retirement from the Office of Chief Justice on 1 August 2012, Sir Hugh was appointed a Judge of the International Administrative (Appellate) Tribunal of the ILO in Geneva, Switzerland. He was also appointed Course Director of the LL.M. Legislative Drafting Program at the Faculty of Law at the University of the West Indies.
Sir Hugh has published a number of articles in Regional and International Law Journals in the areas of Constitutional Law, Administrative Law, Civil Practice, Public Law Remedies and International Commercial Contracts.
Honours and awards
On 27 March 2012, Her Majesty the Queen conferred the honour of knighthood upon His Lordship by the Award of the Order of the Knight Bachelor.
Sir Hugh is married to Lady Claudette Rawlins of Barbados. She is a Certified Accountant (CGA) and a Fellow of the Institute of Chartered Corporate Secretaries of Canada (FCIS).
Lady Rawlins started her career, on leaving school, with the former East Caribbean Currency Authority now the Eastern Caribbean Central Bank. She then worked with the Central Bank of Barbados in various positions and departments; as a Management Accountant at the Head Office of Shell Antilles and Guianas Limited; as an Accountant with KPMG in the Virgin Islands and subsequently Corporate Manager and Director of Corporate Services with PriceWaterhouseCoopers, St. Lucia, until July 2012.
Sir Hugh and Lady Rawlins have two daughters - Claire Buckland and Dara-May Maynard, and one granddaughter, Arianna Buckland.