Wed | Sep 19, 2018

Remembering Colin Bullock

Published:Tuesday | October 24, 2017 | 12:00 AM
From left: Richard Lumsden of the PIOJ with Dr Peter Phillips, who was then minister of finance, and Colin Bullock, the then director general of the Planning Institute of Jamaica, at the Caribbean Growth Forum held at the University of the West Indies in 2013.
2005: Derick Latibeaudiere (right) Governor of the Bank of Jamaica (BOJ), in discussion with Colin Bullock, deputy governor, before the start of a quarterly meeting at the BOJ's downtown Kingston offices.
Governor-General Sir Patrick Allen (right), in discussion with Colin Bullock during a 2013 visit to King's House.


The following are tributes to the late Colin Bullock, former financial secretary in the Ministry of Finance and the Public Service, who died on October 18.

Audley Shaw, minister of finance and the public service

I am saddened at the news of the passing of Mr Colin Bullock, former financial secretary in the Ministry of Finance and the Public Service, 2005-2008.

Mr Bullock will be remembered for his contribution to the economic development of his country, having served at the Bank of Jamaica for 20 years and rising to the position of senior deputy governor before being appointed to the post of financial secretary and then director general of the Planning Institute of Jamaica.

He shared his technical competence through lecturing at the University of the West Indies for many years, where he inspired the minds of tertiary students who have grown professionally to become outstanding economists in Jamaica and across the globe.

It is said that "man's life is truly wasted if at the end of his day, he has failed to pass on his experiences". This was not so in Colin Bullock's case.

On behalf of the Government of Jamaica, I extend deepest condolences to his two children, his brother, and other family members.

May the comfort of God help them during this difficult time.

Dr Omar Davies, former minister of finance

I wish to join with those persons who have paid tribute to the life of Colin Bullock, who died recently.

Naturally, reference has been made to his contributions as a public servant, and correctly so. In that regard, he served at different times as a deputy governor at the Bank of Jamaica, as financial secretary, and as director general of the Planning Institute of Jamaica. His ability to serve with distinction in these various posts speaks not only to his technical capabilities, but also to the versatility of mind in bringing to bear his academic credentials to different socio-economic challenges facing the country.

However, as significant as Colin's contributions were to the public sector bodies where he worked, his influence on the country's socio-economic development was more extensive because of his many years as a lecturer in the Department of Economics at the University of the West Indies. Colin was widely hailed as one of the best lecturers from the Department of Economics, and his former students have occupied, and continue to occupy, many senior positions in both the public and private sectors in Jamaica, the wider Caribbean, and, indeed, in the wider world.

I recall that when he first left the UWI to become the head of research at the Bank of Jamaica, the view was that he was simply reconvening his lectures/seminars at Mona as the majority of the technical staff of BOJ's Research Department were his former students.

I wish also to pay tribute to Colin, who was Jamaican through and through. While he was at the BOJ, he was often asked to lead Jamaica's technical team interfacing with the technocrats from the multilaterals. We all had total confidence that the team, led by Colin, would be a match for the representatives of the multilaterals. However, without making any concession at the technical level, he maintained positions reflecting a deep awareness of the burdens carried by the lowest income groups.

Colin's Jamaicaness was also demonstrated by the fact that he had a deep interest in all facets of the country's life - whether it be current affairs, politics, sports, music, whatever. Many were surprised when Colin would make an incisive comment on a subject area in which no one thought he had an interest.

Finally, I pay tribute to Colin, a genuinely warm and caring human being. As a specific example, I have personal knowledge that in the recent past, despite his own travails occasioned by the death of his wife and his own failing health, Colin was quietly and consistently supportive of one of his former students who had fallen on hard times. Without any fanfare, Colin would take the time to make regular visits and to make a financial contribution, which he knew was well needed. He continued with this support until the former student passed away.

May his soul rest in peace.