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Arlington Butler
(2 January 1938 - 9 November 2017)
Sir Arlington Griffith Butler, KCMG, JP
Former Speaker of the House of Assembly, The Bahamas

Sir Arlington Griffith Butler was a Bahamian politician and former Speaker of the House of Assembly.

Early life and education

Arlington Griffith Butler was born on 2 January 1938 in Nassau, Bahamas. He was educated at the Bahamas Teachers College, the University of Nottingham, and the Longborough Training College.


Prior to entering politics, Butler was  Assistant headmaster Government High School and Prince William High School. He later became a Law Clerk, qualified as a lawyer, and was called to the Bahamas Bar in 1974.

Butler first ran for a seat on the House of Assembly representing the Progressive Liberal Party (PLP) in 1967 and lost. Butler contested the next year's elections and won. He was re-elected in 1972 and served as Speaker of the House of Assembly from 18 October 1972 to 20 October 1977, when he left the PLP.

He launched an unsuccessful independent campaign in Culmersville constituency in 1977; and later joined the Free National Movement (FNM). He ran under the FNM banner in 1982 for West End and Bimini, and in 1987 for Fort Charlotte and 1987, but never returned to parliament.

Butler was Minister of Public Safety and Transport between 1992 and 1995 and Minister of Public Works in 1995 in the FNM under the administration of former Prime Minister Hubert Ingraham.  He was named Ambassador to the United States from 1996 to 1997.

Sir Arlington was also Chairman of the Broadcasting Corporation of the Bahamas, the Gaming Board and the Hotel Licensing Authority.

Honours and awards

In 1996, Butler he was knighted by Her Majesty the Queen as Commander of the Order of St. Michael and St. George (KCMG).

Personal life

Sir Arlington’s first wife, the late Shelia Lady Butler, died in 2013 following a long illness.   He is the father of Arvin, Arlington Gibao, Kristal Lafleur, and Kara Butler-Wight.  He later married his second wife, Hazel Lady Scott-Butler.

Outside of politics, Sir Arlington spent over 50 years in the service and administration of sports in the Bahamas. He served as President of the Bahamas Olympic Committee for almost 40 years.


Butler died at the Princess Margaret Hospital on 9 November 2017, aged 79.  He was accorded an Official funeral on 24 November 2017.




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Occupation Politician, Educator
Date of Birth 2 January 1938
Place of Birth The Bahamas
Date of Death 9 November 2017 (aged 79)
Place of Death The Bahamas
Notable Accomplishments
Speaker of the House of Assembly, The Bahamas: 18 Oct 1972 - 20 Oct 1977
Country profile The Bahamas
Speakers of the House of Assembly
Free National Movement

 Caribbean Leaders
 Caribbean Nobel Laureates
 Women in Caribbean Politics
 National Heroes
 Order of the Caribbean Community Recipients
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