Province appoints administrator to run Banff Centre, will substitute board of governors

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The Banff Centre for Arts and Creativity has a brand new non permanent administrator, changing its chair and board of governors.

Paul Baay, described in a provincial press launch as an “skilled enterprise chief, company director and founding father of Touchstone Exploration Inc.,” will, over the subsequent six to 9 months, “evaluate inner processes and insurance policies on the Banff Centre and tackle the duties of the board of governors till a brand new chair and board might be appointed.”

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Baay was appointed to the place by Alberta’s authorities Thursday (Oct. 26).

“We’re wanting ahead to working with Paul Baay,” mentioned Chris Lorway, Banff Centre president and CEO, who was additionally a part of the board of governors. “He has a variety of board governance experience in arts organizations. I anticipate that his evaluate of inner processes and insurance policies at Banff Centre will play a useful position in reinforcing our agency basis as we take Banff Centre ahead with the implementation of our strategic plans.”

Communications workers with the Banff Centre deferred questions concerning the choice to dissolve the board of governors to the province. The Outlook reached out to the province and can replace this story as extra data turns into out there.

Lorway and Minister of Superior Schooling Rajan Sawhney mentioned they worth the efforts of all former board members.

“We deeply recognize the service of all former board members, together with the chair, authorities appointees and board of governor appointees alike, on the Banff Centre,” mentioned Sawhney in a press launch. “They’ve given their time and a focus to furthering this vital establishment, and their collective contributions have positively positioned the Banff Centre for future success. This modification presents a chance to deal with a refreshed future for the Banff Centre.

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“Paul Baay has a variety of related expertise that may make him an efficient administrator. I’m assured in his capability to satisfy his position instead of the board of governors of the Banff Centre till a brand new chair and board are appointed.”

Underneath the Put up-Secondary Studying Act, the provincial authorities appoints people to serve on the governing boards of public post-secondary establishments, together with the Banff Centre.

Based on the press launch, when Baay was appointed, there have been 5 vacancies on the board for board-appointed members.

The precise composition of the board of governors – together with which positions have been vacant – was unknown as of the time of the provincial choice. Nonetheless, longtime chair and Banff resident Adam Waterous had served as chair since 2019.

As of Might, different board of governor positions have been comprised of Jeff van Steenbergen, Leslie Belzberg, Bob Dhillon, Ron Hallman, Lorway, Cherith Mark, Mike Mendelman, Gregorio Oberti, Raif W. Richardson and Bob Sartos.

The board of governors on the Banff Centre, established in 1933 by the College of Alberta, consists of a board chair, president, 5 government-appointed public members and 9 board-appointed members, together with one nominated to the board by the federal minister of setting and local weather change.

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The federal minister will put ahead a nominee for appointment to the newly constituted board as soon as it’s appointed, in response to the province.

The Banff Centre has not been with out controversy lately.

In 2021, the province rescinded board of governor Donna Kennedy-Glans. The previous MLA and affiliate minister was appointed to the board in 2019 and served as its vice chair for greater than a 12 months till she was dismissed.

The Banff Centre mentioned Kennedy-Glans’ appointment was ended after senior management had requested the province to rescind her place on the board.

She publicly instructed media shops she was shocked by the choice and demanding of the transfer. She wrote in a column for Alberta Views that she believed an look on CBC Eyeopener in 2021, the place she was interviewed concerning the ongoing disruption within the UPC occasion towards former Premier Jason Kenney, started battle between her and Waterous.

In 2014, longtime Banff Centre President Jeff Melanson abruptly resigned after serving within the submit for 2 years.

Nonetheless, in 2016 throughout an annulment software by his former spouse that claimed allegations of sexual harassment of feminine workers throughout his time on the Banff Centre.

The outstanding arts and cultural centre additionally confronted backlash through the COVID-19 pandemic when it quickly laid off about 400 workers – roughly 75 per cent of its workforce – after which a couple of months later completely laid off 280 of them.

Extra to return . . .

Jessica Lee is a Native Journalism Initiative reporter on the Rocky Mountain Outlook.

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