(CMR) Two days after CMR announced that DCFS Director Felicia Robinson had resigned government has also confirmed her replacement will be Caymanian Paulinda Mendoza-Williams effectively immediately!
Our original CMR sources indicated that Mendoza-Williams was to take up the post early next year. However, it appears that the appointment has now been expedited.
The Ministry of Community Affairs is pleased to announce the appointment of Mrs. Paulinda Mendoza-Williams as the Director of the Department of Children and Family Services (DCFS) effective 13 November 2018.
Following a recent recruitment process, which attracted a number of strong candidates, Mrs. Mendoza-Williams was offered the DCFS directorship. Mrs. Felicia Robinson, the current Director, and Mrs. Mendoza-Williams are working together during an interim transition period. “I want to thank Mrs. Robinson for her two years of dedicated service to the Ministry, the Department and the community and wish her well in her future endeavours,” said Chief Officer Teresa Echenique.” “She has been instrumental in establishing key foundational work in DCFS to enhance and develop services.”
Mrs. Mendoza-Williams has 20-plus years of experience in the social work profession. She originally started as a social worker and steadily progressed in the department. Currently Deputy Director of Clinical Services, Mrs. Mendoza-Williams has been in this role since October 2012. She has also acted in the capacity of Director numerous times. In 2015-16 she was Acting Director for 10 months, prior to Mrs. Robinson's appointment.
Most recently, Mrs. Mendoza-Williams was seconded to the Ministry of Community Affairs. As Assistant Chief Officer in February 2018, she was responsible for oversight for the review and policy development of the Cayman Islands Multi-Agency Safeguarding Hub (MASH).
As Deputy Director, Mrs. Mendoza-Williams is actively involved in restructuring the Department to reflect a more specialised approach to social work delivery. Her other job-related accomplishments include assisting with the restructuring of the financial assistance programme by establishing the Needs Assessment Unit; and the development, implementation, monitoring and review of legislation and policies that impact best practice in social work such as the Children Law (2012 Revision), Youth Justice and Adoption Laws.
“I am extremely humbled and excited to be given this opportunity to take up the role of Director,” said Mrs. Mendoza-Williams.” A significant amount of my career and professional development has been focused on serving my community effectively. Along with the hardworking DCFS staff, I will continue developing and enhancing the work of the department by ensuring legislation, best practice and policy are employed to promote positive social change.”