Sen Shanika Roberts Odle
Barbados Medicinal Cannabis Licensing Authority
Senator Shanika Roberts-Odle is always striving to tackle new challenges which has landed her in the new role of Chief Executive Officer (Ag.) of the Barbados Medicinal Cannabis Licensing Authority (BMCLA), the regulator for the island’s newest industry.
As the former Programme Administrator for the BMCLA, Senator Roberts-Odle oversaw the planning, implementation, and optimization of the project. She is also one of the newest Government Senators, having taken the oath of office January 2022, and bears responsibility for reviewing and approving Barbadian legislation.
She specializes in the areas of trade policy, public policy, leadership, capacity building, advocacy, policy research, and organisational change management. This has led to her
strong background in also representing the country of Barbados, having attended as Country Leader to China’s Bridge to the Future in 2017 as well as the United Nations Conference on Trade and Development (UNCTAD) Virtual Institute.
She also served as Barbados Alternative Representative to the OAS Inter-Commission on Women garnering the opportunity to represent women of the political class in China again. Here, she represented as Barbados’ lead at the First Workshop for Women Cadres of Foreign Parties in 2019 where she had the opportunity to address the highest levels of political women from Africa, South Pacific, the Indo-Pacific, and the Caribbean.
Senator Roberts-Odle has also held a number of national positions on boards and committees including serving as 2nd Vice Chairman of the ruling party, the Barbados Labour Party (BLP) in 2019-2020 during which she undertook a project called ‘Living History’ a documentary of the history of party leaders. She was also Vice President of the League of Young Socialists and Vice President of the Women’s League for the BLP.
She was a former project lead for the League of Young Socialist outreach programme to the island’s Sterling Children’s Home, a home for children as young as six (6) months old to teenagers who are in need of emotional, technical, and physical assistance. She continued her work advocating for the well-being of the country’s children serving as a Board Member with the Child Care Board (CCB), where she assisted in the modernization of its procedures and policies as well as its outreach through the reestablishment of its digital face and website.
The Senator continued to demonstrate her skills in innovation and project management, spearheading the highly successful 3D technology to create base structures for masks & face shields which were used to manufacture and package ready-to-use sterile face shields and masks during COVID. These were deployed to all CCB Centers, homes and days care facilities, the Queen Elizabeth Hospital, the Transport Board and Government Policlinics. The significance of this project was commended by the Prime Minister of Barbados, and it also earned her a Humanitarian Medal of Honor from the Government of Barbados.
Senator Roberts-Odle holds a Master’s in International Trade Policy and a bachelor’s in political science and public sector management.