Sir James Beethoven Carlisle, GCMG (born August 5, 1937) is a dentist and the former Governor-General of Antigua and Barbuda. Selected by Vere Cornwall Bird as the country's first indigenous prime minister, his term ended in June 2007, after 14 years in office.
Carlisle was born August 5, 1937 in the village of Bolans, Antigua. He received his early schooling at Bolans Public School, before moving to the United Kingdom to continue his education at Northampton College of Advanced Technology. He then took a Bachelor's degree in dentistry at the University of Dundee. In 1991, he graduated from the American School of Laser Dentistry.
Carlisle practised in both Antigua and Britain. Upon his return to Antigua in 1981 he went into private practice, the fourth dentist on the island. However, he built up his private practice and also undertook work as a dental officer in the public service.
With help from the ex-prime minister, Vere Bird, one of his patients, who offered the position of Governor-General to him, he assisted with the development of a Fluoride programmefor children, and assisted the ex prime minister institute a free dental service. He is a member of the International Society of Laser Dentists and the British Dental Association.
Carlisle was in the British Royal Air Force from 1961 - 1966. He was also commissioned in the Royal Antigua and Barbuda Defence Force between 1983 - 1993. As Governor General he was automatically appointed as Commander of the Antigua and Barbuda Defence Force.
Carlisle involved himself in the local community. He was Chairman of the National Parks Authority, which he ran before he was nominated by the then prime minister as Governor-General of Antigua and Barbuda. As Governor-General Sir James was the representative of the Queen, the country's head of state. As Governor General, Carlisle held the following positions:
- Grandmaster of four Antiguan Orders of Chivalry as Governor-General
- Chief Scout of the Antigua and Barbuda Branch of The Scout Association
- Patron of the local British Duke of Edinburgh's Award Scheme
- Patron of the Renal Society of Antigua and Barbuda
- British Knight Grand Cross of the Order of St Michael and St George (GCMG), November 1993. Invested, July 1994.
- Knight of Justice - Order of St. John (KStJ)
- Doctor of Laws (Honorary), Andrews University in Michigan, USA
Carlisle is married to Emma Carlisle, who during her period as wife to the Governor-General became involved in raising funds from commercial sponsors for indigenous persons in her homeland.