Members of the Barbados Boxing Association (BBA) have placed their confidence in Dr Melissa Branford-Jones to run the affairs of boxing in this country.
The newly elected Branford-Jones became the seventh president of the BBA with 34 votes when the annual general meeting and elections were held Sunday afternoon at the Sir Garfield Sobers Gymnasium.
Branford-Jones is the second woman ever to hold the position and also the second doctor.
What was initially a five-person race was reduced to just three candidates after past president Joyce Bowen withdrew her bid for the top position along with new member Alonzo Welton.
That left the door open for former national volleyball player Branford-Jones to be elected in what was deemed as one of the most exciting elections in the BBA’s history.
Former eight-time Caribbean champion Junior Greenidge captured 24 votes and Guyanese Gardel Roberts tallied a mere two.
During an interview with the media, an elated Branford-Jones said she was excited and honoured to serve in her new role.
“I am very excited. My heart is still beating rather quickly. For a minute it seems it was going to be a very close call but then the final numbers showed a fairly good margin.
“I am honoured and pleased that the members find that I am worthy to serve them in this position. So, I am very excited to start,” Branford-Jones said.
A total of 60 BBA members were eligible to vote when the process commenced just after 5.p.m. after some delay.
Branford-Jones based her campaign on attracting more women to take up boxing while also encouraging more medical personnel to get involved in the sport. =
It was a close race for the position of first vice-president as well and in the end, it was Kelvin Nowell who retained his seat with 30 votes. Nowell snatched victory by one vote ahead of Aubrey Blackett (29 votes) who was named second vice-president.
Long-standing member and veteran administrator Kathy Harper- Hall was re-elected as general secretary with 31 votes. Her rival Allan Lange captured 27 votes. Shani Beckles was elected unopposed as treasurer and Shada Webster assistant treasurer of the BBA.