Nunavut premier announces senior staff shakeup

Changes announced in press secretary, deputy minister positions

Beth Brown, left, is leaving her role as press secretary to Nunavut Premier P.J. Akeeagok, right, as part of senior staff changes the premier announced Monday. The pair are seen here following a meeting with premiers in Ottawa earlier this year. (Photo by Jeff Pelletier)

By Nunatsiaq News

Nunavut Premier P.J. Akeeagok named a new press secretary and deputy minister of human resources as part of some senior management changes announced Monday afternoon.

Michele LeTourneau is stepping in as press secretary as Beth Brown — a former Nunatsiaq News and CBC reporter — leaves that role, according to the Government of Nunavut news release.

LeTourneau comes from a background in journalism and communications.

“Through Ms. LeTourneau, my office will ensure Nunavummiut stay informed about the work cabinet is doing to fulfill the Katujjiluta mandate,” Akeeagok said in the release.

“I’d like to thank Beth Brown for her professional devotion as press secretary over the past year, serving both my office and all Nunavummiut diligently.”

Akeeagok also announced that Kristie Cronin is the new deputy minister of human resources. Cronin takes on the job after working 25 years in human resources, most recently with Essex County in southwestern Ontario.

She replaces Les Hickey, who was deputy minister since May 2022 and who is returning to the GN’s Department of Executive and Intergovernmental Affairs.

Assistant comptroller general Alma Power, who has served as acting deputy minister this summer, returns to the Finance Department.

“Ms. Cronin will be tasked with leading our efforts to find and keep the skilled and talented people we need to create a better future for all Nunavummiut,” Akeeagok said.


Share This Story

(28) Comments:

  1. Posted by Bob Lee on

    While you’re at it, also make changes to the Dept. of Education, CGS, and all departments.

    • Posted by Yo Becko on

      Upgrade the Nunavut curriculum by a few decades and stop “dumming it” down to boost grad numbers.
      Stick to the 3 R’s.

      • Posted by Ken on

        Right now Nunavut uses the Alberta curriculum, it would be best to come up with our own Nunavut based curriculum especially having a Inuktitut curriculum which the GN doesn’t even have.

  2. Posted by Bbff on

    Hope the Education minister is next to go?

    • Posted by Nunavut Sivuniksavut on

      Ed minister will never be removed being NS buddies, they are in it together.

      • Posted by Northern Inuit on

        not only buddies but the backroom deals to ensure PJ was elected Premier made Pam a shoe in to repay her and give her the Deputy and Minister Positions.

  3. Posted by Copy cat on

    Why all the changes what is happening that we are not being told. Just like Trudeau he must be in trouble to being do that. Copy cat when you feel you loosing support.

    • Posted by Johnny Oh Ima on

      blah blah, it’s normal to make changes to improve the process, why don’t you run for MLA and run for Premiere as you are an amazing keyboard warrior.

      • Posted by I should on

        I should run and do what the current one is doing. Hire all friends and family. Thank you for putting that into my mind

        • Posted by Relax! on

          Relax George and Joe, you guys had your time and it wasn’t very good.

    • Posted by Jim Bob on


  4. Posted by Huston, we have a problem on

    Why go outside for DM of HR?
    Is there no one that can be propmoted into the position?
    Isn’t that what HR is all about, developing the capabilities current employees, and hiring new employees only when that development has failed to happen?

    • Posted by Polique on

      “hiring new employees only when that development has failed to happen?”

      Did you just answer your own question?

    • Posted by Name Withheld on

      Majority of the recommendations come directly from EIA, say for example the DM and ADM of EIA.

      Premier likes to have a hold on things and he will get who he can persuade.

    • Posted by Bobby on

      Sheila Kolola did essentially nothing and Les Hickey has no motivation. There is no senior leadership pool to draw from . Long time HR staff in Nunavut have drunk the koolaid and are part of the problem. You’d think this department would hire a good percentage of the 60% vacancies but they have been stuck on pile 1. You’d think this department would follow the data which says the best candidates will require remote work, yet we have no policy that would see high quality talent in positions that remote work is suitable for. You’d think the department would develop retention strategies and a bonus for performance structure for high performing staff, nope here is your step raise like people who do nothing. Lack of ambition and competency is the reason to go outside. Also, Ministers can throw southerners under the bus if it doesn’t work out. Classic Nunavut play.

      • Posted by art thompson on

        there are several issues: the government wants to hire Inuit. Apparently qualified candidates are few and far between, Then there is the way HR has changed the staffing criteria due to lack of staff housing. Just look at the job board. Jobs isolated to specific geographical locations with no housing. What does all this mean? Means positions are filled, if they are, by people who dont require housing and live in that area. Who are those people? Nobody thats who. So departments, for a better word, steal from other departments. Musical chairs.

    • Posted by CSM on

      Houston (Texas)

  5. Posted by Umingmak on

    Shuffling the deck chairs on the Titanic. Nothing will get better. This premier is weak-willed. How a guy who quit on QIA so quickly somehow got picked as Premier is bewildering. Bring back Savikaataq or Taptuna. Anyone is better than this guy.

    • Posted by An unmemorable Premier on

      The enthusiasm around PJ’s appointment to the Premiership was certainly disproportionate to any prior or current accomplishment. He has stacked a cabinet with more weakness that necessary, all to make some kind of political statement (I assume) which has fallen entirely flat and accomplished practically nothing.

      • Posted by Umingmak on

        The moment he put guys like Lightstone and Main in cabinet while snubbing Hickes, I knew he’d be a disaster of a Premier.

        • Posted by Actually on

          Actually the premier doesn’t pick ministers, the entire Assembly votes based on who put their names forward. Premier just assigns their portfolio (and shuffles them at will or removes) but premiers don’t have the power to make ministers or stop someone from being a minister.

  6. Posted by Angry on

    Typical is all I can say. Same old typical GN BS.

    Think of this, the GN is the top employer in Nu right? the GN needs to step up their policies around attendance. Most of our youngins begin their careers at the GN, they learn the GN ways and can never ever leave because they get too use to the same old GN excuses every week, missing work weekly cause your “sick” showing up for work at 930 rather than 830. Lazy do nothing attitude gets into their system and then when they try to go to work somewhere else they FAIL because they got too use to the easy GN ways.

    Don’t bother to show up for work on Friday, no problem, go out and party all weekend then miss again on Monday, easy to do when the GN is your employer.

    Our youngest generation entering the work force now a day’s is too soft! the GN allows to much BS in their pitiful attendance policies then when they go to enter the real world, then they think that if you are disciplining them for their attendance they turn and think you are out to get them.

    Senior Managers being in their seats for longer than some of us have been alive are too lazy to enforce policy on this generation so they get away with basically what ever they want.


  7. Posted by Embarassing on

    So the Premier announces that he will replace all the DM’s with Inuk DM’s. Set me straight.
    He gets rid of Inuk Sheila. Hires a white guy Les and replaces him with a white girl.

    Two whites don’t equal a Inuk.
    Premier is drowning in his own power. This government has proven failure since the start.

    • Posted by Much bigger picture on

      Maybe the problem is you are prioritizing the wrong things?

  8. Posted by Hunter on

    These new senior staff still have to adhere to the same legislation, same regulations and same policies as their predecessors did.

    So nothing is really changing as the foundation remains the same.

  9. Posted by Wow on

    Just wow! A lot of non-Nunavummiut sound pretty upset and critical, I wonder why that is? Most of us Inuit are enjoying the steady changes being made, not as quick as we like but slowly making the changes and improvements our GN needs,
    Paul Q tried to make these changes too quickly and he got ousted for sending too many GN staff to the northern lights (which the GN has always done) and for a 10 dollar glass of orange juice.

    Keep up the great work PJ, steady and consistent.

    • Posted by Peter on

      The bureaucracy at the GN is powerful, they are the ones in control, any Premier and MLA has to listen to them, if not you will be removed.
      This is why we stay the course and things with the GN doesn’t change much. We have to know who these people are in the government that have so much control over our political leaders.
      How is it that they tame vocal politicians? The ones that were Presidents of NTI/RIAs that try and work with the GN and know all the short comings of the GN and voice their displeasure and demand change but once they get in as MLA they start off on the right path to improve things but soon they become silent and just go with the flow at the GN and things stay the same.
      We have to ask ourselves why does this happen?

  10. Posted by Hunter on

    Oh Load please save!

Comments are closed.