Patrina O’Connor-Paynter, aka “Power Girl,” is the Managing Director of Youth Mentoring Programme Big Brothers Big Sisters of Bermuda. She is also an award-winning media personality who has hosted her own radio show and numerous television programmes in Bermuda. Most people know her from being an event emcee, as she hosts many popular events throughout the island, including the Bermuda Day Parade. In 2016, she was named the Most Fascinating Person of Bermuda and was honoured during the televised interview. Then, in 2017, she was awarded the Queen’s Certificate and Badge of Honour for her work in the community. She was also nominated as one of Bermuda’s most influential mothers by Bermuda Parent Magazine. Patrina is a social media influencer ranked in the top 50 Social Media Influencers for Bermuda. In recent years, she has also been given the title of motivational speaker and is invited to speak at youth centred events throughout the island. She is a philanthropist who has given back in many ways to numerous causes; however, her main focus is making a difference in the lives of youth in Bermuda. Patrina received a Bachelor of Arts in Communications with a Minor in Sociology from the University of Tennessee at Chattanooga. She is happily married with one son.
- What is your favourite Bermudian tradition?
Cup Match rivalry!! We represent our Cup Match teams no matter what!! These teams are passed on from generation to generation! Even the visitors try to get in on the rivalry! As much as it is a rivalry, I find that Cup Match also brings people together.
- What’s the most Instagram-worthy place in Bermuda?
Everywhere in Bermuda is Instagram-worthy!!
- What is the best advice you’ve ever gotten?
“Today you are You, that is truer than true. There is no one alive who is ‘Youer’ than You.” – Dr. Suess.
Always be true to who I am… never try to be a duplicate of someone else.
- What do you like most about yourself?
My ability to keep going in spite of circumstances. There is an inner strength that comes out when I least expect it. I think I get that from my mom.
- What do you like least about yourself?
At times I care too much… I want to help everyone. And there are some things that you shouldn’t take on.
- What keeps you up at night?
Prayer… and self-reflection.
- What’s the biggest obstacle you’ve overcome?
Not believing in myself and worrying about what other people thought of me was a huge obstacle. Then I talked to someone whom I thought “had it together” and discovered that they were just as insecure as I was! It proved to me that no one is perfect and that we all have our struggles! Although there are times when insecurity rears its ugly head, I don’t let it stop me anymore!! I just keep going!
- What’s your favourite thing to do on Sunday?
Go to church then come home and cook a hearty Sunday dinner for my family.
- What’s your favourite beach?
My favourite beach is Tobacco Bay. I can sit off there and relax for hours. I love the ambiance and everything the beach has to offer – especially the Bermudian heartfelt hospitality!
- What was your first job ever?
Summer Day Camp counsellor. I worked with the 5-year olds. I loved it because children are fearless! They are also great examples of living life to the fullest.
- Who was your favourite teacher as a child?
Her name is Katy Sheehy and she was my Primary 6 teacher at Gilbert Institute. I was going through a tough identity crisis back then, and she encouraged me so much. She was beautiful both inside and out, bringing sunshine and love into the lives of the children at Gilbert Institute. As a matter of fact, most of my classmates would probably say she was their favourite teacher! She has since moved overseas, and we were able to reconnect on Facebook.
- Who was/is the most influential person in your life?
My mother and my father. My mom is very spiritual and has instilled in me really good values… she also has a passion for making a difference in the lives of young people, which I also possess. My dad is a very free spirit and very grassroots. Most people are surprised when they see that my dad has dreadlocks. I believe their personality types have given me balance.
- What’s in your wallet right now?
It’s after Christmas so probably just receipts… sigh… But on a serious note, I keep in my wallet a paper with a prayer on it that my mom gave me.
- What’s your favourite thing in your office?
- What’s your favourite thing at home?
My family. “Things” really don’t matter much to me.
- Loquat or Bermuda banana?
Both… I have climbed trees and scraped up my knees for both. NOTE: If you have a loquat tree or banana tree, feel free to invite me over when the fruit is ripe…
- St George’s or Somerset?
SOMERSET!!!!!! Is there even a question?? Red and Blue all day, every day!!
- Cricket or football?
To be honest, the only time I really watch cricket is during Cup Match. I am a bonafide soccer mom… so I have to say FOOTBALL for the win! (And if you know about us soccer (football) moms, you know we are out rain, blow or shine representing our children.)
- What are you reading right now?
I have been an avid reader from an early age. Since I read very quickly I have the habit of reading several books at once to slow me down a bit… So currently I am reading Joyce Meyer’s The Confident Woman; Shopaholic to the Rescue, by Sophie Kinsella; Greater, by Steven Furtick; and I recently started Bermudian author Rachel Sawden’s book, Runaways. (Outside of this reading I also read daily devotionals through my Bible App.) I LOOOOOVE to read!!!
- What is your guilty pleasure?
Ice Cream and cupcakes… my weakness!
- What is your biggest phobia?