Leadership Years

The History of the Young Caymanian Leadership Awards

Since 2000, the Young Caymanian Leadership Awards (YCLA) has been presented to sell-out audiences and simulcast on television to ensure the widest possible reach.

The first YCLA was presented at the largest available indoor venue in Cayman at the time, the event tent at the previous Hyatt Regency hotel. The 2001 YCLA was also held at the Hyatt tent, which many residents will remember being located just off the Britannia golf course. During those years, YCLA honoured recipients Mr. Olivaire Watler in 2000 and Mr. Dax Foster in 2001.

In 2002, the YCLA moved to a larger venue when the Governor’s ballroom was build at the Westin Casuarina Resort. The event continued to grow in popularity and attract an enthusiastic sell-out audience for three years at the Westin location. Recipients of the YCLA were Sara Collins in 2002, Steve Blair in 2003 and Cindy Scotland in 2004.

In 2005, following Hurricane Ivan, the YCLA honorary board made the decision to postpone the event for the year in respect for the needs of hurricane relief. Many young leaders emerged during that year and were celebrated, recognized and rewarded during the much-anticipated 2006 YCLA, with Jonathan Tibbetts named as Recipient.

The YCLA moved over to The Ritz-Carlton in 2006 where it remained until 2016 when it moved to the Kimpton Seafire Resort + Spa. During the stay at the Ritz Carlton, 2008 Recipient was Stephen Ryan, 2009 Recipient was Elroy Bryan, 2010 Recipient was Collin Anglin, 2011 Recipient was Natalie Urquart, 2012 Recipient was Garth Arch, 2013 Recipient was Shomari Scott, 2014 Recipient was Kadi Merren-Pentney, and 2015 Recipient was Kellie McGee-Sandy.  Our 2016 Recipient is Brianna Wilkerson.

During this Legacy of Leadership, the YCLA has worked to keep the island’s youth on track by providing them with excellent role models with whom they can identify. This has been accomplished by involving the community who have partnered with us by way of identifying and helping to celebrate the lives of those young persons who instinctively “walk the walk and talk the talk”. By showcasing these wonderful young people, our point is made and the finalist will continue the dialogue via public appearances throughout the year.



2000 Olivaire Watler(R), Kenneth Rankin, Patrick Schmidt, Danny Owens, Tonya Mitchell

2001 Dax Foster(R), Winston Connolly, Wesley Howell, Kenneth Rankin, Nasaria Suckoo

2002 Sara Collins(R), Stefan Baraud, Bruce Blake, Waide L. DaCosta, Tasha Ebanks Garcia

2003 Steve Blair (R), Simon Miller, James Myles, Pamela Small, Joan West-Dacres

2004 Cindy Scotland (R), Dr Kevin Mark McGann, Shari G. Bovell, Suzanne Bothwell, Estella E Scott

2006 Jonathan Tibbetts (R), Jeana Ebanks,Pearlina McGaw,Rayle Roberts,Kyle McLean

2007 Joannah Small, Michael Joseph, Daniel Reid, Nichelle Scott

2008 Stephen Ryan (R), Susan Barnes, Dorothy Scott Crumbley, Winston Connolly, Donald Spence

2009 Elroy Bryan (R), Chris Duggan, Raquel Solomon, Marilyn Conolly, Sean Parchment

2010 Collin Anglin (R), Melanie McLaughlin, Krishan Welcome, Felix Manzanares, Tammy Ebanks

2011 Natalie Urquart (R), Richard Christian, Ventisha Conolly, Chantal Whittaker, Shari Whittaker

2012 Garth Arch (R), Orchid Morrison, Dara Flowers Burke, Casandra Morris, Samantha Widmer

2013 Shomari Scott (R), Michael Blackburn, Melanie Scott, Marzeta Bodden, Victor Crumbley

2014 Kadi Merren-Pentney (R), Chevala Burke, Lydia Warren, Michael Lockwood, Dr. Katrina Jurn

2015 Kellie McGee-Sandy (R), Robbie Cribb, Stephen Watler, Rebekah Jefferson, Dr. Taylor Burrowes

2016 Brianna Wilkerson (R), Tedrick Green, Dr. Lexi Bodden, Kristina Maxwell, Shena Ebanks

2017 Faith Gealey (R),  Alice Ramos, Matt Brown, Stacie Sybersma, Yentel McGaw