Minister I. Ingrid Arrindell provides clarity and information on the selection of the Interim Director of the STA.

1167

PHILIPSBURG, Sint Maarten — Mr. Rolando Brison, the applicant who is slated to be appointed as Interim Director of the Sint Maarten Tourism Authority (STA), was chosen following a stringent selection process.

An offer letter has been extended to Mr. Brison; however, the finalization of the process (the signing of the actual contract) won’t be done until the vetting process, which includes a background check, has been completed.

The selection process was as follows.  A Selection Committee was established, which consisted of the entire five members of the Supervisory Council of the STA which is comprised of a representative of the SHTA, The Timeshare Association, the Princess Juliana International Airport, Port St. Maarten, a representative of the Minister, and Minister Arrindell – six persons in total.

An advertisement for the position was placed in the newspapers in early May 2016.  A total of eleven applications were received.  An additional two applications were later received; however, they were submitted after the deadline, and after the first round of interviews were already underway.

Of the eleven applications received, three were disqualified based on the criteria established by the Selection Committee. Following the first round of interviews, three of the highest scoring candidates were moved on to the second round of interviews.

All six members of the Selection Committee independently scored Mr. Rolando Brison highest, as a result of which he was selected as the candidate for the position of “Interim Director of the STA”.

The picture in the Daily Herald whereby it was stated that Mr Brison was appointed as “the Director of the STA” is incorrect because the actual appointment has not been done as yet.  In the picture, Mr. Brison, the selected candidate for appointment, was signing his offer letter – not the final contract for the position of Interim Director.

Minister Arrindell, who has the responsibility for tourism, is a member of the selection committee and had been designated by the selection committee to offer the position to Mr. Brison, with the intention that the official contract will be offered after the vetting process has been finalized.  At that time, the Interim Director would be appointed by the Supervisory Council of the STA, not the Minister of TEATT.

Minister Arrindell has stated: “Mr. Rolando Brison is a highly intelligent, dynamic, committed, and fully qualified individual.  We look forward to positive results from the vetting process, which will include background checks and a police report, following which we will be able to move forward in finalizing his appointment.  The selection process was done in an open and transparent manner, in which all major stakeholders were involved.”  I stand behind the decision taken by the Selection Committee.

Furthermore, it is extremely important that the STA becomes operational as soon as possible. The establishment of a Tourism Authority on St. Maarten has been in the process for over 17 years. It will allow St. Maarten to emerge out of the shadows and reclaim our rightful position in the landscape of Tourism. Our country, economy and our people depend on this entity becoming a success.