Dr. Christopher F. Hackett received his early education in Barbados at Wesley Hall Boys Primary School and Harrison College. He studied at the University of the West Indies at both the Mona in Jamaica and St. Augustine, in Trinidad and Tobago campuses, where he received a Bachelor of Science in Economics and a post graduate diploma in international relations.
He also holds a Masters of Arts in International Development Studies from Carleton University in Ottawa, Canada and a doctorate in urban economics from New York University.
Dr. Hackett said he is an international development consultant, focusing on diplomatic theory and practice, including negotiations; global governance; and sustainable development, particularly climate change and renewable sources of energy.
Prior to his consultancy work, Dr. Hackett served for more than 40 years as an international civil servant at the United Nations in New York; and in the diplomatic service of Barbados, as his country’s ambassador and permanent representative to the United Nations from the beginning of 2003 to mid – 2010.
At the United Nations, his last position was that of director of the Caribbean Division of the United Nations Development Program (UNDP), where he was responsible for the overall policy formulation, direction and management of the UNDP’s development assistance program in the Caribbean (both national and regional programs and projects).
As ambassador at the United Nations, Dr. Hackett said he represented Barbados’ foreign policy interests at the global level. He disclosed that he was one of the principle architects of the reform agenda of the United Nations at its World Summit in 2005. He was also Barbados’ principle delegate to the United Nations Economic and Social Council during Barbados’ membership of the council (2007-2009).
Dr. Hackett said he was also a member of Barbados’ official delegation to several global conferences, including the UN Conferences on the Sustainable Development of Small Island Developing States; annual sessions of the UN General Assembly; and meetings of the Non-Aligned Movement (NAM), South-South Cooperation and climate change.
He was one of the vice presidents of the UN General Assembly at its 63rd session (2009/2010).
In these varying capacities Dr. Hackett said he contributed to the promotion of the foreign policy interests, and economic and social development concerns of Caribbean countries on the global stage.
He is married to Eleanor (née Harvey), and they have three children and four grand-children.
Dr. Hackett said his father had the greatest impact on his life while growing up.
“He instilled in me the importance of education, which I embraced, as well as provided me with the mores and customs that are needed to be a good citizen,” he said. “These were important aspects to my professional success.”
Dr. Hackett noted that receiving the Caribbean Life Impact Award is a recognition by Caribbean Life of the contribution that individuals can make to the improvement of the lives of Caribbean people, even if their work is not undertaken within the community.
“In my case, my diplomatic work at the international level, over many years, helped to highlight many of the development challenges of many of our Caribbean countries and facilitated a number of the responses that helped to improve development at home,” he said.