Vaughan is a founding partner at Etienne Blake and is a public law specialist with international academic credentials and a wealth of practical local knowledge.
Vaughan joined the Attorney General's Chambers in the Cayman Islands in 1997, having previously taught law in the United Kingdom. During his tenure at the Cayman Islands Law School, Vaughan led on several landmark achievements for the institution and was promoted to Senior Lecturer. In several stints as Acting Director of Legal Studies, he also served as Secretary to the Cayman Islands Legal Advisory Council. Subsequently, Vaughan has worked at the highest echelons of the Cayman Islands Civil Service, where he gained valuable insight into the drafting, enactment and implementation of local legislation; as well as practicing as an Attorney-at-Law.
Vaughan is widely recognised as a leading expert in all aspects of constitutional law, administrative law, judicial review and human rights and these subjects form a large part of his legal practice, which also includes broader civil litigation, alternative dispute resolution – Vaughan is a qualified Civil and Commercial Mediator and a founding Director of the Cayman Islands Association of Mediators and Arbitrators – and regulatory affairs.
Complimenting his legal practice, Vaughan continues to publish and is in high demand as a public speaker. He has lectured for numerous law schools across the United States, including Case Western Reserve University, De Paul University, the University of Illinois and Texas A&M University, where he has developed his thesis on the inter-relationship between the constitutional arrangements in the Cayman Islands and the evolution of the jurisdiction as an offshore financial centre. Vaughan has also been invited to address professional legal bodies, such as the Canadian Advocates Society and the Organisation of Commonwealth Caribbean Bar Associations; and international organisations, including the United Nations High Commission for Refugees and the International Organisation for Migration.
In 2012, Vaughan was appointed as a Visiting Professor at the School of Law of the University of Alabama, where he designed and delivered courses in international law. He also retains academic affiliations in the United Kingdom, via the School of Business and Law at Kingston University London, where he was a Visiting Fellow; and Oxford Brookes University, where he has been appointed as an Honorary Knowledge Exchange Associate in the School of Law.
Closer to home, Vaughan has represented the Cayman Islands on the Council of the University of the West Indies and has served on the Board of Governors of the University College of the Cayman Islands. Since 2014, Vaughan has also regularly returned to the Truman Bodden Law School of the Cayman Islands, where he is now a visiting Faculty Member, to deliver lectures on the Cayman Islands Constitution for the next generation of Caymanian lawyers.
Vaughan’s long record of public service in the Cayman Islands also comprises numerous appointments in direct recognition of his expertise in constitutional and human rights law. Vaughan currently serves as the Chairman of the standing Constitutional Commission and as a Member of the Gender Equality Tribunal, having previously sat as the human rights specialist on the Legal Sub-Committee established by the Cayman Islands Government to produce the first ever National Disability Policy. These appointments follow his successful tenure as a founding Member, and latterly Deputy Chair, of the Cayman Islands Human Rights Committee, during which time Cayman’s first ever Bill of Rights, Freedoms and Responsibilities was drafted and a new Human Rights Commission entrenched in the Constitution.
Vaughan represented the Human Rights Committee in the second round of the formal negotiations that gave rise to the 2009 Constitution and has also been commissioned by the Cayman Islands Cabinet Office to author the Cayman Islands Review Committee’s Report on the future of the relationship between the Cayman Islands and the United Kingdom. In 2010, Vaughan was engaged by the Commonwealth as a Caribbean expert in human rights for its capacity building project in the United Kingdom Overseas Territories.
Between 2006 and 2012, Vaughan was a Member of the National Pensions Board, where he worked closely with the Cayman Islands Monetary Authority and Legislative Counsel with responsibility for financial services and, at the inception of Cayman’s first Special Economic Zone in 2011, he also provided regulatory oversight as a Director of the Special Economic Zone Authority. Recently, Vaughan has been appointed as a Law Reform Commissioner and thereby charged with responsibility for the review of the laws of the Cayman Islands and their systematic development and reform. Vaughan now deploys his local administrative, legislative and regulatory experience to good effect in his legal practice that encompasses both regulatory compliance and enforcement and as a consultant on the legislative process.
It is Vaughan’s unique combination of practical skills, academic expertise, local administrative experience and distinguished service that sets him apart from other practitioners in the Cayman Islands.