|Derek Hugh Taylor, OBE
Former Chief Minister of Turks and Caicos Islands
Derek Hugh Taylor (born 1951) is a politician from the Turks and Caicos Islands.
Early life and education
Derek Hugh Taylor, born on the island of Grand Turk on 1 October 1951, was the sixth child of seven children. He completed his Primary and Secondary school education on Salt Cay and Grand Turk. He was always active in his community as a child. To name a few, Sunday School, Boys Scouts and Cricket. His ability to recall stories and recite poetry saw him maintain top position in his English Literature Class and for this many teachers and students remember him.
Upon completion of his formal education in 1970, Taylor joined the Civil Service of the Turks and Caicos Islands, a place where he developed his skill and love for service. In Grand Turk, he served as an employee in the Treasury and Customs Department. During his final years in the Civil Service, he served in several managerial administrative roles, that of District Commissioner in South Caicos, Middle Caicos and North Caicos and Deputy Collector of Customs.
Taylor also served on a number of Boards and Committees. His natural ability to lead saw him rise to the higher echelons in the Civil Service Association, having served two years as President and seven years as Vice President. While in the Civil Service, he attended many courses, seminars and workshops in the Region and the United Kingdom.
In 1988, Taylor entered politics when he became a member of the People's Democratic Movement (PDM), the first political party in the Turks and Caicos Islands. In the elections of 1988, the PDM won by a landslide, the only one of its kind in history, and he served as Minister of Commerce and Development. In 1991, after a defeat at the polls, Hon Taylor was elected Leader of the Opposition.
Taylor led the PDM to victory in the 1995 election. Under his leadership his Party won the next two General Elections (1999, 2003) and he became the longest serving Chief Minister in history (31 January 1995 to 15 August 2003). Shortly after his victory in 2003, by-elections were held by an Order of the Court and the PDM y lost its majority; Taylor continued as the Leader of the Opposition.
While serving as Chief Minister, he attended various courses, seminars and events, including the Presidential Prayer Breakfast in Washington. He served on the Board of Governors of the Caribbean Development Bank on three separate occasions. He was also elected as the first President of the Overseas Countries and Territories Association (OCTA).
Taylor was re-elected to the Turks and Caicos Islands House of Assembly as an at-large member in the 2012 elections.
Honours and awards
Taylor was honored by the Queen during the Millennia Celebrations in 2000 and he received the Order of the British Empire (OBE).
Taylor, cousin to the founder of our political system, first Chief Minister, and only named National Hero, the late JAGS McCartney, is husband to one woman, father of three and grandfather of two.
He is an active member of the Methodist Church where he is a lay Preacher