(CMR) Samantha Bennett, current Deputy Chief Immigration Officer (Administration), has been appointed as the new Chief Human Resources Officer at the Health Services Authority and will begin her new appointment on July 1.
We understand the appointment was recently confirmed after a highly competitive process that saw many bid for the top HR job. The HSA has a staff compliment of around 900 persons.
Bennett is an accomplished human resource professional with over twenty years experience. She was also a founding member and past president of the Cayman Islands Society of Human Resources Professionals (CISHRP). For the past twelve years she has worked at the senior HR level with a focus on strategic policy development.
She was appointed Deputy Chief Immigration Officer (Administration) in April 2010, having served four years prior as Chief Human Resources Manager with the Ministry of Finance, Tourism and Development. Before joining government she had experience within the private sector’s tourism and retail industries working at management level within the field of human resources.
As DCIO (Administration) Bennett's responsibilities related to 13 major areas within the immigration department under administration covering a staff compliment of 60. She also provided guidance on the immigration law, policies and procedures and worked with various stakeholders to improve efficiencies.
Bennett holds a first degree in Business Administration, a Postgraduate Certificate in Professional Management, a Postgraduate Diploma in Personnel Management and a Master’s Degree in Human Resources Management. She is also a founding member and past president CISHRP (Cayman Islands Society of Human Resources Professionals).
In November 2013 she was seconded for fourteen months as Acting Customs Collector. We understand she unsuccessfully applied for that post and subsequently she returned to her management post at immigration. Our sources indicate that her love for human resources drew her back into this post.
According to many, this is a much welcomed appointed after the HSA management came under some scrutiny by members of the Legislative Assembly; most notably MLA Chris Saunders (BTW), about the hiring of an “unqualified” HR manager – Brenda Riley. Read story here.
Saunders has given his support behind this appoint:
“I believe that it is clear from the PAC hearings that some changes need to be made in the senior management as well as the Board of the HSA. While this is a step in the right direction, more needs to be done to improve the public's confidence into how the HSA is being managed. There are a lot of good, hardworking men and women at the HSA and it is important that the right team is in place to manage their collective efforts. I wish Mrs. Bennett all the best in her new role.”
The Cayman Islands Health Services Authority provides care through the 124-bed Cayman Islands Hospital (104 inpatient and 20 observation beds) and the 18-bed Faith Hospital on Cayman Brac. Ancillary services are offered at district health centres, and clinics for dental and eye care.
Bennett is also the mother of 3 children and is married to longtime architect Irvin Bennett.