Skip navigation

"...His passion and commitment are exemplary and he continues to make an outstanding contribution..."

Chief Officer, Jennifer Ahearn

Published 24th September 2018, 7:20am

Chadd Oliver Bush is the Cayman Islands Government Employee of the Month for July 2018.

Acting Governor Franz Manderson presented the Employee of the Month Certificate to Mr Bush on Friday (31 August) for developing "exceptional leadership qualities by being highly engaged and motivated in achieving results in the lives of those he serves."

The awards ceremony was also attended by his colleagues and senior managers.

Mr Bush is a Conservation Officer with the Department of Environment, which is within the Ministry of Health, Environment, Culture & Housing.

As an employee, Mr Bush takes his Department's conservation mandate seriously. Over and above his regular duties, he demonstrates a real dedication and enthusiasm for preserving one of the Cayman Islands national treasures – our marine turtles.

Although all of the DoE Conservation Officers are sometimes involved in night time patrols, over the past two years Mr Bush has volunteered many hours in excess of the standard work week, patrolling active turtle nesting beaches at night.

One patrol led to him rescuing a mature female turtle from poachers last turtle season, and he took part in assisting another turtle in distress in July. On average, green sea turtles lay between 300 and 700 eggs each nesting season. Therefore, from a statistical standpoint, his rescue efforts ensured the safe laying of between 600 and 1,400 eggs.

Even though encounters with poachers are not commonplace, such individuals are often aggressive and are sometimes armed with weapons, making Mr Bush's commitment even more noteworthy and heroic.

The work of Conservation Officers directly impacts on the lives of Caymanians, residents and visitors. They not only help maintain current turtle populations, they preserve an important piece of local heritage for future generations and contribute to Cayman's eco-tourism experience.

Chief Officer in the Ministry of Health, Environment, Culture & Housing, Jennifer Ahearn said she was pleased to recognise one of the many hard working civil servants in her Ministry as the Chief Officer's Choice for July 2018, noting "His passion and commitment are exemplary and he continues to make an outstanding contribution to the important work of the Department."

Director of Environment, Gina Ebanks-Petrie thanked Mr Manderson for selecting a DOE staff member, saying, "Chadd has a very strong commitment to the conservation work of the DoE as demonstrated by his willingness to take on this extra responsibility for no additional pay and no time-in-lieu."

"Although the DoE's marine turtle programme involves several DoE research staff and a large cadre of local volunteers who monitor turtle nesting beaches on the three islands from May through November of each year, we rely heavily on the selfless dedication of our Conservation Officers like Chadd to ensure that our marine turtles are permitted to successfully nest on those beaches targeted by poachers," Mrs Ebanks-Petrie added.

"Sea turtles are an important part of Cayman's history and culture. Chadd is all too aware of the declining populations, so he does whatever he can to prevent further declines… It is not uncommon for him to walk the coast up to four to five nights per week from June until about October," she explained.

DoE Chief Conservation Officer Mark Orr also praised Mr Bush for his exceptional work ethic and sense of responsibility. "Mr Bush is fully deserving of the Employee of the Month award. He has earned the respect of his colleagues as he exemplifies remarkable motivation, leadership and drive."

"In this day where financial motivation is often required to get anyone to go above and beyond, it is truly admirable that Chadd does this work out of a love for the Cayman Islands," he added.

At the awards ceremony, Mr Manderson was equally enthused to present Mr Bush with the Employee of the Month Certificate. "Mr Bush's level of altruism and single-mindedness when it comes to protecting the welfare of our sea turtles is inspiring and something we can all draw on and take pride in," he said.

"You display a selflessness that is rarely found in most work environments. I am encouraged to learn that, despite your full workload, you have seen fit to independently take on the additional task of protecting our vulnerable sea turtles during the egg-laying season. I thank you for an outstanding level of duty and dedication to your department and the Cayman Islands Government. You are an outstanding role model for all Cayman Islands civil servants".