50 years ago: Selkirk Watler profiled

In the April 27, 1966 edition of the Caymanian Weekly, a precursor of the Cayman Compass, the paper’s Personality Parade featured a Bodden Towner:

NEW Bodden-50-years-logo-final-595x420“Full marks for success in a business undertaking go to our ‘Personality’ for this week, Mr. Selkirk Watler, who is one of the island’s leading real estate agents.

“Selkirk was born in Bodden Town in 1934, the son of Mr. and Mrs. Douglas Watler but from the age of four years was raised by his grandparents, Mr. and Mrs. Alfred Watler. Mr. Alfred’s business was raising cattle and his grandson assisted him in this during his schooldays at the Government School.

“On Oct. 14, 1954, Selkirk was employed by National Bulk Carriers and remained at sea until 1956.

“After this, he left from here on the motor vessel Merco and went to Jamaica where he obtained a visa and joined his father in Venezuela. Here he worked with an oil company for 15 months but decided to go back to sea and joined a ship in Maracaibo.

“Returning home early in 1959, he married Esther Whittaker of North Side, where he lived for some time. There are now six children in the family, four girls and two boys.

“With a sum of money which he had saved whilst at sea, Selkirk bought a piece of property from his grandfather, and from this small beginning he has built up a flourishing real estate business, and today estimates that he owns about 1,500 acres of land in Grand Cayman, a good deal of which is beach property.

“Having bought a home in Bodden Town in 1960, the family have now settled there and Selkirk still raises cattle, owning 24 head at the present time.

“A few months after going into business, he built a home and a little Anglers Club at Frank Sound, which was later sold to Mr. Leon Hull. Next, he added a cottage next door, which was also purchased by an American.

“His next venture in the building line was the erection of his first real estate building in George Town, by Fort George. This is a two-storey office block, 60 feet by 40 feet, with six rooms upstairs and three downstairs.

“After this, he tackled two big beach cottages at Bodden’s Bay which are available for rent. His latest enterprise is the erecting of a second real estate building, adjoining the first, which will offer 11 offices on the top floor and three at ground level.

“Asked if he could put a finger on the secret of his success, Selkirk said he guessed the key lay in the fact that he believed in conducting all his business in an honest and straightforward manner.

“He is certainly one young Caymanian who has done well for himself and climbed the ladder of success rung by rung through his own effort, and we wish him well in the future.”