Governor Albert Bryan Jr. has issued a proclamation commemorating the birthday of Governor Juan F. Luis on July 10.
Governor Luis, who first became governor of the Virgin Islands when Governor Cyril King died, was elected as the third governor of the territory and served for two terms, making him the longest-serving in Virgin Islands history. Gov. Luis also served for one term in the V.I. Legislature before running as lieutenant governor with Gov. King, and he served two terms as the third governor of the territory.
Luis was born on Vieques, and he moved with his family to Saint Croix when he was two months old. In 1958, he graduated from the former Christiansted High School as his class valedictorian.
Gov. Luis is widely credited with overhauling and establishing the current Virgin Islands healthcare system, and he lobbied for federal funds that were used to build the Juan Luis Hospital on St. Croix, the Myrah Keating Smith Clinic on St. John and Schneider Regional Medical Center on St. Thomas.
Gov. Luis died on June 4, 2011, at the hospital on St. Croix that bears his name.