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Lockhart Companies Inc. Announces One Retirement, Two Promotions

Co-CEOs of Lockhart Companies Inc. (LCI), George H.T. Dudley Esq. and the Rev. Dr. Wesley S. Williams Jr. have announced the retirement of a valued, long serving senior officer, and the promotion of two relatively new senior officers.  The promoted men have already begun helping LCI and its nearly 30 subsidiaries round out a new team assembled to meet the new challenges being faced by the almost 130-year-old company.

Etienne R. Bertrand, who, after 26 years of stellar service at the helm of LCI’s real estate division, has retired, and will now serve as special consultant in the position of vice president for real estate development with the parent holding company, LCI.  Bertrand brings to this new position, as he did to his work in LCI’s real estate division, an outstanding background in real estate development.

The new head of LCI’s historic real estate division is Gershwain A. Sprauve, president of Lockhart Realty Inc. and its many operating subsidiaries, and member of the board of directors of the real estate division’s holding company.  Sprauve earned his Bachelor of Science in Business Administration at Point Park University in Pittsburgh, Penn., and qualified as an accredited claims adjuster at the University of Central Florida in Orlando.  He has been active with the Project Management Institute, the Urban Land Institute, the American Institute of Architects and International Council of Shopping Centers, and he has licenses in insurance adjusting and other fields.

Most notable among Sprauve’s prior positions are his service for approximately 15 years as CEO and corporate secretary of the West Indian Company Limited (WICO) from 1997 to 2012, and, for approximately four years before that, as assistant treasurer of Little Switzerland from 1993 to 1997.  His outstanding community service contribution to the Virgin Islands included his involvement with United Way, Boy Scouts of America, Downtown Revitalization Inc. (DRI) and Rotary International.

With the expansion of its active involvement in new fields over the past two to three decades, LCI has found it necessary to expand its accounting and auditing resources to meet the new challenges. 

In the fall of 2015, LCI added to its ranks Robert J. Upson, CPA, as deputy to LCI’s highly-esteemed CEO Octavio Estrada, CPA.  With ever-increasing demands on all fronts, Upson has been promoted to the positions of CEO and assistant treasurer of LCI’s real estate division, finance divisions and all the operating subsidiaries of those two divisions.  Additionally, he is being added as an officer of LCI’s insurance division (including its subsidiaries), namely, as deputy CEO and assistant treasurer.

Robert Upson, formerly a partner in the accounting/auditing firm of Benham, Hodge & Upson, earned a Bachelor of Science Degree at Evergreen State College in Olympia, Wash., a Master of Arts in Teaching Degree, and in 2010 his CPA license, which admitted him to practice in the U.S.V.I.  Upson is well known and highly regarded in this community, where he serves as president of the V.I. Society of CPAs, as treasurer and finance committee member of the St. Thomas Yacht Club, and as president and treasurer of the Caribbean Genealogy Library.

LCI is currently active in the fields of:

  • commercial real estate buying, selling, development, and management in the United State Virgin Islands
  • property and casualty insurance brokerage and underwriting in the U.S.V.I, across much of the Eastern Caribbean, and more recently in Puerto Rico and a half dozen states in the Continental U.S., and
  • premium and other forms of finance likewise in the U.S.V.I. and across much of the Eastern Caribbean.

  All these personnel changes became effective Jan. 1, 2017.

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