By: Omar Silva, Editor, National Perspective Belize
Belmopan, September 22, 2023 – In a momentous ceremony held today, Hon. Florencio Marin, Jr., the Minister of National Defence and Border Security, was bestowed with the Louisiana Distinguished Service Medal by Major General Keith Waddell, the Adjutant General of the Louisiana National Guard. This prestigious recognition marks a significant milestone in Belize's ongoing collaboration with the Louisiana National Guard, highlighting Minister Marin's exceptional contributions to the partnership.
The Louisiana Distinguished Service Medal was awarded to Minister Marin "for exceptionally meritorious service in cooperation with the Louisiana National Guard State Partnership Program." Under his leadership, Belize's Ministry of National Defence and Border Security has solidified its ties with the Louisiana National Guard, further enhancing bilateral cooperation. The citation underlined Minister Marin's unwavering commitment to excellence, professionalism, and leadership, all of which have played a pivotal role in the outstanding success of the Louisiana National Guard's state partnership program.
Major General Waddell noted that Minister Marin's actions exemplify the highest standards of military service, and they reflect great credit not only upon himself but also upon the Ministry of National Defence and Border Security, the Louisiana National Guard, and the State of Louisiana. The accolade reinforces the profound impact of the Belize/Louisiana State Partnership Program, which began 26 years ago and has consistently grown stronger over the years.
Through this enduring partnership, Belize has benefitted significantly from the Louisiana National Guard's expertise, which has contributed to the professionalism and capability of the Belize Defence Force and Belize Coast Guard. Training exchanges and the sharing of subject matter expertise have been integral components of the program, further cementing the bonds between the two nations.
Upon receiving this prestigious honor, Minister Marin expressed his heartfelt gratitude and underscored the deep friendship and camaraderie established with the Louisiana National Guard. His dedication to fostering collaboration and his tireless efforts in strengthening Belize's defence capabilities have not only earned him this well-deserved recognition but have also elevated Belize's standing in the international community.
Minister Marin's exemplary service and commitment to the partnership between Belize and the Louisiana National Guard exemplify the spirit of cooperation and mutual respect, fostering a brighter future for both nations. This award serves as a testament to his outstanding leadership and dedication to the security and well-being of Belize and its citizens.