Gov. Albert Bryan Jr. welcomed three new Cabinet members during a swearing-in ceremony on St. Thomas on Thursday: Office of Collective Bargaining Chief Negotiator Joss Springette; Sports, Parks and Recreation Commissioner Calvert White; and Law Enforcement Planning Commission (LEPC) Director Ray Martinez.
In his closing remarks after the ceremony, the governor stressed teamwork and the hard work that government employees do daily to keep the Government of the Virgin Islands running.
“You don’t really have to do it by yourself. All of us — directors, commissioners, supervisors, family members — we are all a part of different teams,” Bryan said. “We have to remember that as the leader of a team, most of the job is guiding and getting others to participate in getting the job done.”
Recalling remarks made by Bureau of Motor Vehicles Director Barbara Jackson McIntosh at her swearing-in ceremony in June, the governor also had praise for employees at all levels of the government.
“After a couple of days there, she realized we have a lot of competent people that work for our government – a lot of people who have kept the lights on and kept everything going,” Bryan said. “Those people have experience in government. They’re the ones that laugh at you when you come in and say running the government is just like running a business. It’s not. It’s very different.”
Governor Bryan also addressed each of the new Cabinet members directly.
“We have to start to look at our crime problem statistically and have a push and a pull,” he said, addressing Law Enforcement Planning Commission Director Martinez. “We can’t just lock people up. We have to give people things to do.”
Bryan noted when he first spoke with Commissioner White about being the sports “czar,” the commissioner turned him down.
“He said, I don’t want to do it. I love the kids. I want to do things that will allow me to impact the kids,” Bryan said. “This guy has put together an incredible team at Sports, Parks and Recreation. Calvert has that passion and that drive to keep things going.”
Addressing Chief Negotiator Springette, the governor charged her with being part of the foundation of stabilizing and restoring trust in the government, one of the key issues driving the Bryan/Roach Administration.
“Part of our plan is being trustworthy to our customers, for me as governor to say something and follow through and deliver on it,” he said. “Every day Joss has to make sure we’re delivering on that trust. Not only that but to be fair when we’re assessing an employee.”
Chief Negotiator Springette, who previously served as general counsel to the Virgin Islands Public Services Commission, is a graduate of the University of the Virgin Islands and the Thomas M. Cooley Law School. She also is a former assistant attorney general for the Labor Office of Collective Bargaining and represented the central government in labor and employment matters in arbitration, mediation and before the Public Employment Relations Board.
The Office of Collective Bargaining serves as the exclusive representative for the executive branch, and its departments and agencies in all collective bargaining proceedings.
Commissioner White previously was the acting commissioner of Sports, Parks and Recreation on St. Thomas and had worked at the department for more than 12 years, including as assistant commissioner, when he was instrumental in the initiation of the annual Governor’s Youth Territorial Games.
When he nominated Commissioner White in April, Bryan said his administration plans to make the most of the territory’s investments in sporting facilities and that the territory has more than $100 million invested in those facilities.
White holds a Bachelor of Arts in Sports Management from Southeast Missouri State University.
Director Martinez worked for the Virgin Islands Police Department for more than 12 years including as the department’s director of intelligence and the director of internal affairs.
When the governor appointed Martinez in April, he said his administration would refocus the Law Enforcement Planning Commission to ensure a more data-driven approach in the development of anti-crime programs and initiatives in the U.S. Virgin Islands.
Martinez has a Bachelor of Science in Criminal Justice and Criminology from Kaplan University and a Master of Science in Criminal Justice and Criminology from the University of Cincinnati. He also is a graduate of the Federal Law Enforcement Training Center’s Criminal Investigation Training Program.