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Biggs Taps 2 Women For Top Posts At VIEDA’s Economic Development Bank

CHARLOTTE AMALIE — Kelly Thompson Webbe and Monique Samuel were recently appointed as Chief Financial Officer and Managing Director of the Economic Development Bank (EDB), respectively, at the Virgin Islands Economic Development Authority (VIEDA) in July 2021, according to an announcement from Wayne L. Biggs, Jr., VIEDA chief executive officer.  Each woman served previously in interim capacities for their respective positions and began serving in their top spots effective July 16, 2021. 

As the VIEDA’s Chief Financial Officer, Thompson Webbe will oversee the VIEDA’s Department of Administration and Finance focusing on the VIEDA’s return on investments (ROI), increasing revenues, assisting with operations and the overall work culture, and expanding technology for increased efficiency. As she permanently joins the executive team, Thompson Webbe will report directly to the VIEDA’s Chief Executive Officer. Samuel joins the VIEDA senior management team and will continue to oversee the operations of the Economic Development Bank while identifying positive financial solutions for local small to medium-sized businesses. She will report directly to VIEDA’s Assistant Chief Executive Officer. The EDB is one of four entities under the VIEDA.

A VIEDA team member for more than 13 years, Thompson Webbe previously served as the VIEDA’s Interim Chief Financial Officer since November 2019. Thompson Webbe currently oversees all of the VIEDA’s financial functions including, but not limited to, accounting, external audits, budgeting, cash management and financial reporting. She has also been recognized for her consistent foresight in identifying and recommending solutions to operational issues that have a positive fiscal impact on the VIEDA. 

Thompson Webbe continued to greatly contribute to the VIEDA team and the business community during her term as Interim CFO, most notably by maintaining the highest audit rating ( an unqualified opinion ) an entity can receive for its financial statements, and implementing Automatic Clearing House (ACH) payment process, which assists the VIEDA Accounts Payable team in streamlining the vendor payment process. Recognized by her VIEDA peers and other stakeholders as an objective and fair leader, Mrs. Thompson Webbe was selected as VIEDA Employee of the Year in 2013 and 2019. She has a Bachelor of Arts degree in Accounting and a Masters in Business Administration from the University of the Virgin Islands.  

A proactive leader who has dedicated her career to building transparent relationships that ultimately help businesses identify positive financial solutions that address their needs, Samuel has dedicated more than 18 years to the VIEDA’s Economic Development Bank. She recently served in dual roles as Interim Director of Lending and Senior Loan Officer for the EDB for over three years.

As the EDB’s Interim Director of Lending and Senior Loan Officer, Samuel’s responsibilities included assessing and improving customer experience, managing the risk of the loan portfolio, managing a team of four (4) employees, establishing new business leads, partnering with public and private organizations/stakeholders to fulfill the EDB’s mission and goals, analyzing loan requests, overseeing the VIEDA Incubator Program, and leading the development of entrepreneurial opportunities for businesses operating throughout the Territory.  Samuel also served several years in the private sector within the banking industry.

Samuel has a master of business administration degree in Management from American InterContinental University and earned the credential of a Certified Public Manager through the Virgin Islands Division of Personnel’s Certified Public Manager® (CPM) Program. In 2018 and 2020, Samuel was selected as VIEDA Manager of the Year for her skills in professionalism, leadership, communication, customer focus activities, commitment, quality work, teamwork, and innovation.

For more information, send an email to info@usvieda.org

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The Author

John McCarthy

John McCarthy

John McCarthy is primarily known for his investigative reporting on the U.S. Virgin Islands. A series of reports beginning in the 1990's revealed that there was everything from coliform bacteria to Cryptosporidium in locally-bottled St. Croix drinking water, according to a then-unpublished University of the Virgin Islands sampling. Another report, following Hurricane Hugo in 1989, cited a Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) confidential overview that said that over 40 percent of the U.S. Virgin Islands public lives below the poverty line. The Virgin Islands Free Press is the only Caribbean news source to regularly incorporate the findings of U.S. Freedom of Information Act requests. John's articles have appeared in the BVI Beacon, St. Croix Avis, San Juan Star and Virgin Islands Daily News. He is the former news director of WSVI-TV Channel 8 on St. Croix.

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