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New CAO hired for Whistler municipality

Mike Furey to move from Victoria to start work in September



Whistler Council has hired a new leader for municipal hall from outside the community.

Mike Furey, assistant deputy minister at the provincial Ministry of Community, Sport and Cultural Development, will begin the job of municipal Chief Administrative Officer on Monday September 12.

"Mike has strong experience in change and fiscal management, and complex problem solving. He also has a strong background working with First Nations and land use," said Ken Melamed, Whistler mayor in a release.

"He brings in-depth knowledge regarding the policy, infrastructure and financial structures of municipal operations. Council is confident that Mike will be an excellent fit to lead the organization, and help us meet the many opportunities and challenges we have before us."

Whistler municipal staff learned the news Monday morning.

In his most recent position, Furey was responsible for managing the provincial government's relationship with the local government sector and was the primary contact between industry and other partners, particularly in relation to land use and the administration of local government finance tools.

He also held the position of Inspector of Municipalities, and was the provincial lead on an array of local government financial and infrastructure grant programs.

He oversaw the local government legislative program including changes to the Community Charter and Local Government Act (the provincial legislation guiding municipalities) and was the lead for local government sustainability and climate action agenda. 

"I am excited to take on the position of CAO and my family is really looking forward to making our home in Whistler," said Furey.

Furey also held the position of Assistant Deputy Minister for the Ministry of Aboriginal Relations and Reconciliation for the Government of British Columbia where he played a leadership role in treaty and other agreements as well as planning and implementation of provincial policy related to First Nations. This followed a long career with the Department of Indian and Northern Affairs Canada from 1986-2004, where he held a number of positions including Director of Strategic Policy in Ottawa and Senior Federal Negotiator in Vancouver. 

Furey will be moving to Whistler from Victoria where he lives with his wife and two children aged nine and seven.

He holds a Masters of Public Administration from Queen's University, as well as a Bachelor of Education and Bachelor of Arts (Economic Geography).

Furey was chosen after an exhaustive search of candidates through the search firm Caldwell Partners.

"Council was very happy with the process and excellent candidates brought forward through Caldwell Partners," added Melamed.

"We are extremely pleased to welcome Mike to the RMOW and he and his family to the community."

Furey is replacing Bill Barratt, who left the job at the beginning of July.

Stay tuned to the Pique on Thursday for more information.