Having been elected first in 2012, Tregenza A. Roach, Esq., now begins his second term as a Senator in the Legislature of the United States Virgin Islands. Senator Roach served in the 30th Legislature as a member of the Committee on Youth, Recreation and Culture; the Committee on Education and Workforce Development; the Committee on Health, Hospitals and Human Services; and the Committee on Public Safety, Homeland Security and Justice.
As a member of the 30th Legislature, Senator Roach also was nominated to the Education Committee of the National Conference of State Legislatures and was instrumental in getting the support of this influential national body with its adoption of a resolution which supports full citizenship rights for Virgin Islanders.
Senator Roach has called St. Thomas home since 1968, having migrated here from his native St. Kitts with his parents, Victor and Iona Roach. He is a proud graduate of the Charlotte Amalie High School. He attended the then College of the Virgin Islands before transferring to the University of Missouri-Columbia, where he earned a Bachelor of Journalism in 1981. He earned his juris doctorate degree at the University of Connecticut School of Law in 1989 and has been a member of the Virgin Islands Bar since 1991.
Upon completion of his journalism degree, he returned to St. Thomas to work at the Daily News of the Virgin Islands, serving as both Reporter
and News Editor. While attending law school, he gained valuable experience, clerking first in the Office of the Governor’s Legal Counsel, then the office of the United States Attorney, and finally at the Territorial Court of the Virgin Islands. After earning his law degree, he worked in the Territorial Court’s Civil and Family divisions and then in private practice as an Associate Attorney at Bornn
Senator Roach then began his public service with his employment as Legal Counsel to the Department of Education. As Legal Counsel, he functioned as primary legal advisor to the Commissioner with regard to labor, contract, and student matters. He coordinated the Department’s negotiating team in conjunction with the Office of Collective Bargaining.
Ending his tenure with the Department of Education, Senator Roach was selected as Executive Director of the Virgin Islands Board of Education, a position which afforded him the opportunity to provide managerial leadership for the Board, which is the chief policy-making body for the Virgin Islands Department of Education.
Upon leaving the Board in 2006, Senator Roach was selected by the University of the Virgin Islands to lead a program of public education in support of the Virgin Islands Fifth Constitutional Convention. In this award winning consultancy, he served as the Coordinator/Researcher for Constitution 2008, a public education project with marketing, legal, historical, publications, and media components.
In connection with his role, Roach was chosen by the United Nations to present on the subject of constitutional development processes in the U.S. Territories at the UN’s Decolonization Seminars in St. Georges, Grenada, (2007); Bandung, Indonesia (2008); and Basseterre, St. Kitts (2009).
Senator Roach served on the adjunct faculty of the University of the Virgin Islands from 1999 to 2012, teaching courses in the Humanities and a Constitutional Law course in the graduate program in Education. He completed
other projects with the University, to include a major environmental project with the United States Environmental Protection Agency, the launch of the University’s Center for the Study of Spirituality and Professionalism, and Editor in Chief of The Caribbean Writer, the University’s award- winning, international, literary journal.
Senator Roach is a poet and author and has published in Liberia Seabreeze Journal, Calabash Journal of New York University, POUI, the journal of the University of the West Indies, Yellow Cedars Blooming: An Anthology of Virgin Islands Poetry, Seasoning for the Mortar and several volumes of The Caribbean Writer. He recently published his first book for children, The Lesson Box, which joins his other publications, The Blessing of Rain and Other Poems, and All This Is Love: A Collection of Virgin Islands Poetry, Art and Prose. He was awarded the Margaret Walker Fiction Prize by the Detroit Writers Guild in 1999, the Marguerite Cobb McKay Prize for publication of work in the 20th Edition of The Caribbean Writer, and the St. Thomas/ St. John Library Association’s Distinguished Caribbean Author Award in 2009.