H.E. Surangel S. Whipps, Jr. and his Cabinet kicked off the new year at a full day retreat last Friday, January 7, 2022, dedicated to establishing a unified course for FY2022.  The retreat brought the full Cabinet together for the first time in a closed informal setting that allowed the President, his Chief of Staff, and his Ministers to get better acquainted with each other personally and professionally. It also set the stage for prioritizing further strategic planning and institutional strengthening activities in each ministry this year.  

The President and his Cabinet spent most of the retreat evaluating their first year in office and determining priorities for the new calendar year. A key outcome of the retreat included the establishment of this year’s theme, “Oterkeklel a tekoi er a klekerngel me a sebecheklel a beluu me a rechad” or “Ensuring Our Security and Safety.”  The theme is meant to highlight each Ministry’s focus on improving and executing policies and mandates that safeguard, improve, and better deliver public services, particularly related to critical national priorities around food and health security, public safety, cultural and historic preservation, economic livelihoods, youth and workforce development, environmental conservation, and public-private-partnerships.

At the retreat, President Whipps, his Chief of Staff, and his Ministers reflected on many of the achievements in the first year, but carefully deliberated about the tremendous amount of work that lay ahead. Their main strategy for the next three years is to work collectively, as a family, to realize the national vision of “A Kot a Rechad er Belau.”  In the end, despite their diverse backgrounds and pathways into this administration, they share similar values – love of family, community, culture, and nation.  

Another retreat has been set for March to ensure effective implementation and proper monitoring of progress.

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