Ellis Clarke


Sir Ellis Emmanuel Innocent Clarke

Second and Last Governor General of Trinidad and Tobago

First President of Trinidad and Tobago

Born on the 28th December 1917, Belmont, Trinidad and Tobago

Died on the 30th December 2010 (aged 93) Maraval, Trinidad 

Governer               15 September 1972  to  1 August 1976

President                28 January 1977  to  13 March 1987

Married                  Lady Ermyntrude Clarke (1921–2002) (Hagley)

Children                 Peter Ellis Clarke (married to Suzanne Traboulay,

        a former beauty queen)

                             Margaret-Ann (married to Gordon Fisken of Edinburgh,


                             Richard (who died as a young child)

Grand Children       John, Michael, Alexander, David and Katrina.

                             John, Michael and David all carry Ellis as their middle


He was the second and last Governor General of Trinidad and Tobago.

He was one of the main architects of the Constitution.

He  attended Saint Mary's College, winning an Island Scholarship in

Mathematics in 1938.

Then attended the University of London, where he received a Bachelor of Law degree and was called to the bar at Gray's Inn.

He returned to Port of Spain in 1941, and took up private practice.

He became Solicitor-General from 1954 to 1956, Then Deputy Colonial

Secretary 1956–57


Followed by Attorney General 1957–62.


After Independence in 1962 he served as Ambassador to the United States, Canada and Mexico, and Permanent Representative to the United Nations.

In 1972 he succeeded Sir Solomon Hochoy as Governor General.


He was unanimously elected the country's first President by the presidential electoral college in 1976. 

The President house (previously the Federal Museum and Art Gallery) was renamed in 1976 and first occupied by President Ellis Clarke.

He was re-elected by the PNM-controlled electoral college and completed his second term in 1987.

Ellis Clarke was invested as a Companion of St Michael and St George by Queen Elizabeth II in 1960 and was awarded a knighthood as a Knight Grand Cross of that Order in 1972.


He ceased to use the title Sir after the country became a republic, however after retirement from the presidency he re-adopted his title and was generally referred to as "Former President, Sir Ellis Clarke" or Sir Ellis.

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