Premier Caroline Cochrane announced today that Dr. Erin Kelly has been named Deputy Minister of Environment and Natural Resources and that Mr. Andy Bevan has been named the Associate Deputy Minister, Post-Secondary Education Renewal, and President of Aurora College.

Currently Acting Deputy Minister of ENR, Kelly most recently played a key leadership role for the GNWT in establishing the Thaidene Nëné National Park Reserve, bringing to a successful conclusion more than 40 years of discussions and negotiations with the Government of Canada and Łutsël K’e Dene First Nation.

Cochrane stated that Dr. Kelly’s proven leadership and experience in natural resource management and environmental protection in the Northwest Territories “will be an asset to our government as it continues to pursue its commitment to protecting the NWT’s land, water and wildlife for current and future generations”.

Named one of Canada’s top 100 most powerful women by the Women’s Executive Network in 2017, Kelly has also been responsible for leading the implementation of the Climate Change Strategic Framework, NWT Water Stewardship Strategy, Waste Resource Management Strategy and Knowledge Agenda.

She has been the GNWT lead on the Giant Mine Remediation Project and played a leadership role in negotiations on behalf of the GNWT of several agreements related to transboundary water and caribou management.

Currently the Assistant Deputy Minister, Labour and Income Security, Bevan replaces Dr. Tom Weegar. In his position as ADM, Bevan spearheaded the vision, design and implementation of the Skills 4 Success Framework, a 10-year strategy to meet labour market needs by supporting education, training, job finding and immigration for in-demand occupations.

As part of the strategy, he initiated and championed initiatives including the NWT’s first Small Community Employment Strategy, first long-term labour market forecast, first apprenticeship, trades and occupational certification strategy, and post-secondary legislative and regulatory reform.

Cochrane added that Mr. Bevan’s experience in developing and overseeing labour market and income security programs for the GNWT, including training, as well as experience in Indigenous and intergovernmental relations “make him the ideal choice to lead the next steps in the transformation of Aurora College into the NWT’s first polytechnic university.”

Bevan also previously served as Acting Deputy Minister of Aboriginal Affairs and Intergovernmental Relations, and as Director of Intergovernmental Relations.

The Premier thanks Dr. Weegar for his work in helping to advance the transformation of the College into a polytechnic university and wishes him well in his future endeavours.