Sandals honours late founder with new scholarship, opens donations for marine conservation
The late Gordon “Butch” Stewart presenting a team member with an opportunity to further her potential toward an even brighter future | Credit: Sandals

Sandals honours late founder with new scholarship, opens donations for marine conservation

MONTEGO BAY — Adam Stewart, Sandals Resorts International’s Executive Chairman, is honouring his late father, Gordon ‘Butch’ Stewart, in the most poignant way: by creating a scholarship in his name.

In one of his first initiatives as Executive Chairman, the younger Stewart has unveiled ‘The Gordon ‘Butch’ Stewart Tourism & Hospitality Scholarship’ to foster the power of education and develop the next generation of Caribbean tourism leaders.

The elder Stewart, who founded Sandals Resorts in 1981, passed away on Jan. 4 at the age of 79.

Sandals honours late founder with new scholarship, opens donations for marine conservation

The late Gordon “Butch” Stewart presenting a team member with an opportunity to further her potential toward an even brighter future | Credit: Sandals

“My father fiercely believed in the power of possibility; he understood and celebrated the ability of people to rise above their potential and accomplish great things,” said Adam Stewart. “This scholarship’s core mission is to ensure a strong future for the Caribbean hotel industry by fueling the talent pipeline with opportunity – a true reflection of my father’s passion for the region and its potential.  That’s why I am delighted to honour his memory and the example he set by empowering our team members to dream big and dream bright.”

The scholarship will be funded through contributions raised by the Sandals Foundation, the brand’s non-profit philanthropic arm aimed at making a difference in the lives of the Caribbean people. It will be available to full-time team members who will be evaluated based on their financial needs, personal attributes and success in their current role.

Working alongside the Sandals Corporate University (SCU) and in partnership with local colleges and universities, recipient(s) of the scholarship will be eligible to receive funding for up to a four-year college program in hospitality and tourism. Applications will be accessible through the SCU starting June 1, 2021.

Added Stewart: “When we launched the Sandals Foundation in 2009, we did so to put a formal face to the philanthropic efforts my father championed since he opened the doors of Sandals Montego Bay in 1981. It’s my honour now to ‘formalize’ this scholarship in his name, cementing his passion for mentorship and his profound desire to elevate the promise of the Caribbean.”

In addition to the scholarship program, anyone wishing to honour the late Gordon ‘Butch’ Stewart and his love of the region he called home can make a donation to support the marine conservation efforts of the Sandals Foundation. Through the creation of coral nurseries and marine sanctuaries, and by partnering with local groups for mangrove restoration and turtle conservation, the Sandals Foundation has helped to restore and sustain delicate marine ecosystems.

According to Heidi Clarke, Executive Director of the Sandals Foundation, the late Chairman was most at home when on the water.

“He had an unshakeable love for the Caribbean Sea and over the years, greatly contributed to marine conservation throughout the region,” said Clarke. “Mr. Stewart has impacted so many people across the globe, and his legacy will live on as we continue to strengthen our partnerships and communities to be positive change makers.”

Canadian donations can be made locally through the Unique Vacations Canada office and are subject to tax receipts. For further details, contact your local Sandals BDM or info@uvisandals.ca.

For more information on The Gordon “Butch” Stewart Tourism & Hospitality Scholarship or Marine Conservation efforts, visit www.sandalsfoundation.org.