Nine months after taking the oath of office to lead the U.S. Virgin Islands, Governor Albert Bryan at Government House on Monday watched as his final seven nominations took their own oath of office to lead the respective departments and agencies they’ve been charged with managing.
The final seven who swore on the Bible and raised their right hand before Presiding Judge of the Superior Court, Harold Willocks, include:
- Trevor Velinor, Police Commissioner
- Kimberley Causey-Gomez, Human Services Commissioner
- Richard Evangelista, Department of Licensing and Consumer Affairs Commissioner
- Kodjo Knox-Limbacker, The Adjutant General of the Virgin Islands National Guard
- Rupert Ross Jr., Director, Bureau of the Information Technology Director
- Daryl Jaschen, Director of the Virgin Islands Territorial Emergency Management Agency
- Raymond Williams, Executive Director, VI. Lottery
Today’s ceremony completes Mr. Bryan’s 29-member cabinet, which Government House said has been charged with moving forward the governor’s “transformative agenda to stabilize the Virgin Islands government and restore public trust and to rebuild and sustain a vibrant economy.”
“This is the final round of people we are swearing-in, and it’s a time of great transition for us as a cabinet,” Mr. Bryan said. “People look at ‘change course now’ as a physical change, but it’s a mental change. It’s an attitude change. It’s a policy change. It’s a whole different vibe of government coming to life in the Virgin Islands. We’re looking ahead to all we have to do.”
According to Government House, during the ceremony, which was attended by all cabinet officials, Mr. Bryan told his cabinet that the honeymoon phase of the transition into government leadership was coming to an end.
“Now we got to start pushing because we are settled in now,” he said. “Now is the time to get things done. This is a time of doing. Our job is to make the Virgin Islands better for everyone who lives and who comes here.”
Lieutenant Governor Tregenza Roach thanked the newly sworn-in members for stepping forward to serve and encouraged them to work closely with fellow cabinet members to accomplish their goals, Government House said.
“We get so much work done when we work as a team than when we create our own silos,” Mr. Roach said.
The territory’s leader also thanked the 33 Legislature for approving every one of his nominees to hold cabinet-level positions, for the first time in recent history. President of the 33rd Legislature, Sen. Novelle Francis Jr., attended the ceremony as well as Senator Kenneth Gittens.
Each commissioner and director delivered brief remarks, reflecting on their decision to serve at the highest levels of government and stated their commitment to serving the people of the U.S. Virgin Islands.
Both Mr. Roach and Mr. Bryan Jr. also delivered remarks encouraging to the make teamwork a hallmark of the service.
Cabinet members previously sworn-in are:
- Finance Commissioner Kirk Callwood Sr.
- Attorney General Denise George
- Office of Management and Budget Director Jenifer O’Neal
- Education Commissioner Racquel Berry-Benjamin
- Public Works Commissioner Nelson Petty Jr.
- Sports, Parks and Recreation Commissioner Calvert White
- Property and Procurement Commissioner Anthony Thomas
- Tourism Commissioner Joseph Boschulte
- Agriculture Commissioner Positive T.A. Nelson
- Labor Commissioner Gary Molloy
- Health Commissioner Justa Encarnacion
- Department of Planning and Natural Resources Commissioner Jean-Pierre Oriol
- Personnel Director Dayna Clendinen
- Office of Collective Bargaining Chief Negotiator Joss Springette
- Internal Revenue Bureau Director Joel Lee
- V.I. Fire Service Director Daryl George Sr.
- Bureau of Motor Vehicles Director Barbara Jackson McIntosh
- Bureau of Corrections Director Wynnie Testamark
- Office of Veterans Affairs Director Patrick Farrell
- Office of Disaster Recovery Director Adrienne Williams-Octalien
- V.I. Energy Office Director Kyle Fleming
- Law Enforcement Planning Commission Director Ray Martinez