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A doctor and Hospital Administrator, Bynoe was, so far, the only woman to have been governor of one of the British Dependencies, Hilda Bynoe was the first woman Governor of a Commonwealth of Nations country, becoming Governor of Grenada, Cariacou and Petit Martinique. She spent most of her adult life as a teacher and doctor of medicine in Trinidad and Tobago.
Born in Crochu, Grenada, West Indies, Bynoe was educated at the village school, where her father, Thomas Joseph Gibbs, was headmaster and where her mother, sister and aunts had at one time or the other been teachers, and at St. Joseph's Convent, the island's only Roman Catholic Secondary School for girls. The first few years of adulthood were spent as a teacher at the Convent of St. Joseph in San Fernando, Trinidad, and later at Bishop Anstey High School in Port of Spain, Trinidad, as a science student. In 1944 she left for Europe to study Medicine and graduated from the University of London's Royal Free Hospital, then the London School of Medicine for Women, in 1951.
While still a student, she met and married Peter Cecil Alexander Bynoe, a Trinidadian RAF Officer; they had two sons, Roland and Michael. The Bynoe family returned to the West Indies in 1953 and Hilda Bynoe served in Guyana and Trinidad for the next fifteen years.
In June 1968, she was appointed the First Woman Governor in the British Commonwealth and First Native Governor of her island home. She was made a Dame Commander of the Order of the British Empire by Queen Elizabeth II in 1969. In 1990, she retired to continue her writing and to assist in the care of her granddaughters Olukemi and Nandi. She continued as Patroness of several organizations, including the Caribbean College of Family Physicians, the John Hayes Memorial Kidney Foundation and the Caribbean Women’s Association. She died, aged 91, in Trinidad.
- Cambridge, Ucill (17 March 2013). "First female Grenadian governor Bynoe dies at 91". The Trinidad Guardian. Port-of-Spain, Trinidad. Retrieved 9 April 2013.
- "Dame Hilda Bynoe". Caribbean Community Secretariat. Retrieved 11 March 2015.
- "Dame Hilda Bynoe, Grenada's First Governor Dies". The Gleaner. Kingston, Jamaica. 8 April 2013. Archived from the original on 7 January 2014. Retrieved 11 March 2015.
- Neaves, Julien (12 April 2013). "Bynoe hailed as 'Federation' champion". Trinidad Express Newspaper. Port-of-Spain, Trinidad. Retrieved 11 March 2015.
- Merle Collins, The Governor's Story: The authorised biography of Dame Hilda Bynoe, Peepal Tree Press, 2013. ISBN 9781845232245
|Governor of Grenada
Leo de Gale