Richard W. Duncan Awarded the Most Excellent Order of the British Empire (O.B.E.)
Mr. Richard W. Duncan, O.B.E., the immediate past Managing Director of Grenada Co-operative Bank Limited has been conferred the honour of Officer of the Most Excellent Order of the British Empire (O.B.E.) in the Queen's 2022 Birthday Honour's List in recognition of his meritorious service to the banking sector.
Mr. Duncan's journey at Co-op Bank started in 1996 as Manager, Finance and Corporate Affairs. Recruited to help restructure and modernise the Bank's operations and bring it in line with Eastern Caribbean Central Bank (ECCB) regulations and international banking standards, Mr. Duncan was instrumental in championing the radical structural and cultural changes necessary for the growth and development of the institution. In addition, Mr. Duncan instituted in-house staff training programmes and access to professional qualifications financed by the Bank.
In 2008, Mr. Duncan took up the mantle of Managing Director. For the next 13 years, he was committed to continuing the expansion of the Bank's long tradition of service to the Grenadian people. He capitalised on technology to deliver innovative financial solutions, services, and initiatives that propelled the Bank forward.
Among the initiatives introduced under Mr. Duncan's stewardship were the launch of the Super Starter Education Investment Plan and the accompanying scholarships, and Super Starter Higher Education Loan Plan in 2009. These plans have significantly contributed to Grenada’s long-term sustainable development by creating avenues to help Grenadian students fund the increasingly high costs of education. As an advocate for the development of sports and local athletes, Mr. Duncan thought it necessary to capitalize on the opportunity to become a proud sponsor of Olympic and World Champion Kirani James, Primary Schools’ Games and other sporting events to pave the way for future champions. The highly anticipated Pump it Up Family Fun Walk was also introduced under his leadership, to foster healthier lifestyles and contribute to health related charitable causes.
Co-op Bank became the first institution in Grenada to facilitate securities trading on the Eastern Caribbean Securities Exchange (ECSE) in 2017 through its Brokerage and Investment Services Unit. As a result, Co-op Bank listed its shares on the ECSE, providing shareholders with an efficient mechanism to buy and sell shares of the company.
During his 25 years at Co-op Bank, Richard W. Duncan spearheaded the transformation of the Bank, which saw it moving from the fifth largest among five banks to the largest, and the first to reach $1 billion in assets. Co-op Bank was surpassed only because of the merger between two other banks. At the end of his tenure, Co-op Bank had assets of over $1.4 billion, over 200 highly trained staff, five (5) Retail Banking Units, Broker-Dealer operations, and modern electronic banking solutions. Richard W. Duncan was an exceptional leader and model banker; his legacy will be forever entrenched in Co-op Bank’s story and banking history. Mr. Duncan is the second Managing Director of Co-op Bank to receive this prestigious award; Mr. Gordon V. Steele, O.B.E. was awarded in 2007.
The Most Excellent Order of the British Empire (O.B.E.) is a British Order of chivalry established on June 4, 1917, by King George V., who wished to honour the many thousands of people who served in numerous none combat capacities during the First World War; as opposed to the other Orders such as the Most Honourable Order of the Bath, The Most Honorable Order of St. Michael and St. George, and the Royal Victorian Order; all of which honoured senior military officers, civil servants, diplomates and those who served the Royal Family respectively.
Recommendations to the Queen for the Honours Lists occur twice yearly, at New Year, and for the Queen's official birthday in June. The British Monarch is the Sovereign of the Order and appoints all members of the Order by Convention, on the respective Governments’ advice.
The British Honours System is one of the oldest in the world, which has evolved over 650 years recognising merit, gallantry, and service.
The Board of Directors, Management, Staff, and Customers of Grenada Co-operative Bank Limited proudly salute Mr. Richard W. Duncan, O.B.E. on this outstanding honour of excellence for his contribution to Co-op Bank and the banking industry of Grenada, Carriacou & Petite Martinique and the OECS.