|United States Ambassador to the Bahamas|
22 October 2009 – 21 November 2011
March 6, 1968 |
Los Angeles County, California
At the invitation of Ambassador Avant, leading education reform activist and CEO of the Harlem Children's Zone, Geoffrey Canada, addressed Bahamian education officials at her residence. She has also worked closely with local advocacy groups for people with disabilities. Ambassador Avant hosted Eunice and Francesca Shriver, granddaughters of Special Olympic founder Eunice Kennedy Shriver and Special Olympians from the Bahamas to mark Eunice Kennedy Shriver Day and to raise awareness for Special Olympics-Bahamas. Holly Robinson Peete and Rodney Peete were also guest of the Ambassador to raise awareness for REACH, a Bahamian support group for families affected by autism. On January 7, 2012, Ambassador Avant received the 20th Annual Trumpet Awards's International Award for her dedication to public service. Mayor Cory Booker, Ted Turner and Aretha Franklin were among the other honorees.
Avant resigned her post in November 2011. She then assisted with fundraising for Barack Obama's 2012 re-election. A 2012 United States State Department report noted that Avant's appointment was preceded by "an extended period of dysfunctional leadership and mismanagement." The report was critical of Avant's frequent travel and use of the office in the Ambassador's residence rather than the office inside the U.S. Embassy. The report was also complimentary of Avant's work with law enforcement and her relationships with the local government and concluded that she had been "an effective communicator of U.S. policy and advocate for U.S.-Bahamian relations." Upon her resignation, The Tribune praised the Ambassador as one of the more popular U.S. Ambassadors to ever serve in the Bahamas.
- "California Birth Index, 1905-1995 [database on-line]". Ancestry.com. Provo, Utah: Ancestry.com Operations Inc. 2005. Retrieved 6 June 2017.
- Thompson, Lindsay (23 October 2009). "The Bahamas welcomes 13th US Ambassador". The Bahamas Weekly. Retrieved 24 February 2012.