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HomeNewsArchivesDerek Gabriel Seeks to Be a Delegate to the Convention

Derek Gabriel Seeks to Be a Delegate to the Convention

June 1, 2007 – As a twenty-four year old Virgin Islander from St. Thomas, I believe it is critical that our generation is sufficiently represented in the Fifth Constitutional Convention. Quite simply, we have the most to potentially gain, or lose, in this historic event. We are also tasked with paving the way for future generations to follow and prosper. With this understanding, I decided to run for the Constitutional Convention as a district delegate.
My work experience includes working as an intern with Delegate Donna M. Christensen and a researcher and public relations director for Senator Shawn-Michael Malone in the Virgin Islands Legislature. Undoubtedly, I gained a wealth of valuable experience from working under their tutelage. Through these experiences, I witnessed first-hand the significant setbacks we face because we have no true governing document. Further, as a History major graduating from the University of Delaware, I understand the importance of having a document that essentially defines who we are. Without it, how can we truly move forward with economic development, cultural preservation or government reform? A Virgin Islands Constitution would certainly assist in efforts to solve these problems and provide us with a faster means to address our needs, rather than petitioning Congress.
Many are curious to see how delegates from their respective districts will coincide. Simply, we are seeking to draft a US Virgin Islands Constitution, not a document that only governs one district. It is important that delegates keep their districts in mind, but not at the expense of the entire territory. It is not feasible to look at this critical document through a pinhole. If elected, I plan to look at the entire picture, while still keeping our beloved district in mind. It is imperative to maintain this delicate, but crucial balance. I believe my commitment to teamwork will be a valuable asset in this regard.
There are certain rights that can only be ascertained through securing a Virgin Islands Constitution. Currently, we have two good drafts to start with, the Fourth Constitution draft and the Revised Organic Act of 1956. There is certainly no need to start from scratch. However, it will take a sincere focus on teamwork, undivided commitment to the task at hand and dedication to moving our Virgin Islands forward. For these reasons, I believe I would be a good delegate to the Fifth Constitutional Convention. Don't you think it's time we move forward…vote for No. 17, Derek Gabriel on June 12th.

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