Deputy governor awarded royal gong

| 11/06/2018 | 39 Comments
Cayman News Service

Deputy Governor Franz Manderson

(CNS): Cayman’s top public servant and career government leader, Franz Manderson, has been awarded in the Queen’s 2018 Birthday Honours with a Member of the Most Excellent Order of the British Empire (MBE) for “his sterling services to the Cayman Islands,” according to a government release. The latest royal gong to be bestowed on a Caymanian was announced at the celebrations on Saturday (see Cayman marks the Queen’s birthday). Manderson joined the civil service straight from school at just 16-years-old and is now in charge of the administrative arm of government with a budget of more than half a billion dollars and 3,600 staff. 

“I was surprised; I didn’t see it coming,” he said on hearing of his award. “I was a bit shocked but I was very happy and very grateful.”

Asked what he thought people’s reaction might be, he said, “I have enjoyed a lot of support during my entire civil service career and now as deputy governor. I want people to understand that they helped me receive this as well. I’ve had great support from my family, great role models and a dedicated group of civil servants, including chief officers, who support me. So, I would like people to celebrate this as their award. I have not done this by myself.”

He began as a teenager, as far down the pecking order as possible, as an hourly paid worker with the Department of Immigration. But he was soon promoted up the ranks, culminating in his appointment as chief immigration officer in July 2004.

“Tempered in the forge of one of the islands’ most demanding frontline departments, he continued to impress co-workers and seniors with his strong work ethic and ability to make qualitative advances in policy formation and application,” official said in a release about Manderson’s award.

In July 2009 he was promoted to the post of deputy chief secretary in the Portfolio of Internal and External Affairs. Following the implementation of the new Constitution, which renamed the post of chief secretary to deputy governor, Manderson’s title also changed to chief officer.

In 2012 the United Kingdom secretary of state, in consultation with then governor Duncan Taylor, approved his appointment as deputy governor and head of the civil service. He is also a member of Cabinet and the first official member of the Legislative Assembly.

During his current tenure, Manderson is credited with strong leadership and development, public sector reform, budget management, performance management, strategic planning and implementation, as well as policy development. Officials also said that under his stewardship, the majority of ministries and portfolios are now maintaining unqualified audit opinions of their financial statements, a dramatic improvement in performance. He is also said to have been instrumental in delivering budget surpluses in excess of $100 million over the last few years.

Although the Standards in Public Life legislation has still not been implemented, in the release about Manderson, officials pointed to some key pieces of legislation designed to improve governance that were piloted by Manderson, such as the Procurement Law, and the Public Authorities Law.

In January 2018 he rolled out the first-ever 5-Year Strategic Plan to modernise the civil service by delivering an outstanding customer experience, forming exceptional leadership, seeking excellence in talent development, fostering effective communication and demonstrating excellence in governance practices.

Outside of his job as a career government employee, Manderson also earned a law degree, completing his legal studies at the University of Liverpool. As an attorney-at-law, he was called to the Cayman Islands Bar in July 2004 and later appointed as a justice of the peace in 2008.

He has founded the popular DG’s 5K Challenge, which has raised in excess of $272,500 for local charities and is one of the most well-attended walk/run events in the Cayman Islands. His promotion of wellness activities has had a positive impact on the lives of hundreds of civil servants and members of the private sector.

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Comments (39)

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  1. Anonymous says:

    Congrats to the DG. Well deserved!

  2. Anonymous says:

    The MBE like many of the other honours is a relic of colonial Britain. You accept an ‘award’ from the master you despise, the same ‘master’ that is making laws for us. A little hypocritical I think.

    • Anonymous says:

      Someone once told me the degree of MBA stands for More Bad Advice, so I would imagine the E in MBE is for experiences to look forward to.

  3. Anonymous says:

    I read these comments and have to wonder if the people commenting and giving thumbs down are actually in Cayman or whether Mr Manderson deported them years ago.

    Burke needs serious prayer. How dare you try and shame the likes of Ms Olive Mr Benson Mr Norman Mr Truman and others who have all received an award from the Queen.

    Thank you Mr Manderson for all that you have done for Cayman and it’s people.

    Stop being jealous and ask Mr Manderson for advice on how to be a true leader.

  4. Anonymous says:

    Now that Franz has that honorable award, can you please start to clean up the Civil Service??? Why wasn’t it given to Chuckie?! He seems to be the ONLY one doing anything!

  5. Anonymous says:

    Congratulations! Now, take some time to finalise the increase promised to teachers.

  6. Anonymous says:

    Since he has accomplished SO much, maybe a few of his supporters can give a few examples as to what he has truly accomplished.

    Don’t let me hold my breath in vain please.

    • Anonymous says:

      He was perhaps one of the best CIOs we had if not the best. He made and implemented clear policies that changed the face of immigration and made it progressive. When he left we all felt it including the public. As DG he has lead the civil service admirably and I don’t think there are many that would challenge his integrity. He has inspired many whether in performance of their duty or just getting healthier and held out an olive branch to even those civil servants that don’t like him. I consider him a good friend. I have never had reason to think for one moment that he does not care about his job (quire the opposite he is passionate about his job) and wants to see everyone improve under his leadership. I believe him to have views politically but he never allows that to get in the way of being impartial to any government he works with and for those of us that sat on committees or boards under him, he was always supportive. If he goes above and beyond the call of his duty wherever he has been placed in Govt then surely that makes him worthy of this honor. I am so very proud of him and say well deserved!

  7. Anonymous says:

    An MBE for 10 years of utter disappointment. Promised so much, talked the talk but buckled every time to the civil service union and achieved worse than nothing.

    • Observer says:

      Interesting that this story is paired with the one about the CO for Health — he dragged his feet on that, according to Miller’s allegations. While I have admired Franz for a long time, and deservedly so, I am not so sure now that he has not been contaminated by the Civil Service culture of maybe-if-I-do-nothing-the-problem-will-disappear.

  8. Anonymous says:

    Why are so many people voting down the positive comments about Mr. Manderson? By all accounts, he seems like a nice, reasonable, and humble person…. So why is it, based on the thumb down votes, more than half the people do not like him???

    • Anonymous says:

      Because clearly you don’t know him!

      • Anonymous says:

        Clearly I do not. That is why I posted the question. Care to comment, with at least a bit more detail, as to why some people do not like him?

    • Anonymous says:

      You said it all, “by all accounts”.
      Probably not all, some people actually know this man.

    • Anonymous says:

      They are voting down the positive comments because they are sooooooo jealous. I think he has accomplished much in a relatively short time. Cayman should be proud of him, I know I am. Congratulations Mr. Manderson,

    • Anonymous says:

      Cream rises to the top- some will always be bottom feeders! Mr. Msnderson is the “cream “

  9. Anonymous says:

    Wonderful news!

  10. Anonymous says:

    Congratulations. This is long overdue. Mr Manderson has truly cared about the success of the Cayman Islands.

    While I am sure his haters will be in bottom form as usual. Mr Manderson you have made a huge difference. God bless you and your family.

  11. Anonymous says:

    Congrats DG. I worked with you for 10 years and can attest to your dedication and love for our islands.

  12. cess pita says:

    Undoubtedly Mr Manderson has committed his entire working life to the Civil Service and has had the best of intentions, but the bottom line is that his organisation has a host of major problems which have existed for decades and which have not been addressed.

  13. Sheppie Brandon says:

    Desmond Seales was the only person that deserve and MBE in my view because at least the public knew exactly the kind of menace he was!

    • Anonymous says:

      Unfortunately, Mr. Manderson, who I have respected for many many years, is not the gentleman that I thought that he was. What you see is not necessarily what you get.

    • Anonymous says:

      10:18 — just can’t resist the comment — maybe you should have advise that gnat Bridger who succumbed to spider Seales’s beguiling “Come into my parlour.”

  14. Eddy Burke says:

    Awarded to those who systematically under mind their own people and community and have continued to be a absolute menace to their own society. Who without conscience and extreme prejudice will inflict any type of hardship, pain and suffering on others on the behest of the governing power. Here it its bestowed to ensure continued loyalty at all cost and immunity from the law which governs the lesser people.

  15. Anonymous says:

    Well deserved DG.

  16. Anonymous says:

    Well deserved, couldn’t have been bestowed upon a more deserving person, so humble and polite he is the opposite from how many people act when they get to the top, he seems to get more humble the higher he gets, keep making these Islands proud many thanks

  17. Anonymous says:

    Very well deserved DG – keep up the positive attitude and work and don’t let the negative ones get you down.

  18. Sally Balderamos says:

    Congratulations, Franz!!! Well deserved! I’m so proud of you❤️

  19. Anonymous says:

    Congrats Mr. Manderson. You made this award respectable again

  20. Anonymous says:

    Well deserved.

  21. Anonymous says:

    Congrats DG

  22. Elvis says:

    Well. Done Mr Manderson, well deserved

  23. Anonymous says:

    Long overdue. Thank you DG for all that you have done for the Government and people of the Cayman Islands.

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