Louise Flaherty is moving from the deputy minister’s job at Culture and Heritage to become deputy minister responsible for the Department of Education, as of Dec. 17, swapping roles with Pujjuut Kusugak. (PHOTO COURTESY OF GN)

Nunavut premier shuffles key deputy ministers

Savikataaq names head of new HR department, shuffles Culture and Heritage, Education


Nunavut Premier Joe Savikataaq announced an end-of-year shuffle of senior Government of Nunavut managers that will produce big changes this month at the top of the departments of Education, Environment, and Culture and Heritage, as well as at the new Department of Human Resources next year.

Starting Dec. 17, Louise Flaherty moves from her current role as deputy minister of Culture and Heritage to become deputy minister of Education, Savikataaq announced Dec. 14.

Flaherty will swap roles with the current deputy minister of Education, Pujjuut Kusugak, who moves over to the deputy minister’s job at Culture and Heritage.

At the Department of Environment, Pauloosie Suvega will depart as deputy minister to become the new president of Nunavut Arctic College as of Dec. 17.

And Steven Pinksen becomes acting deputy minister of Environment.

Savikataaq also used the occasion to announce the official re-launch of a standalone Department of Human Resources, which will start up in April 2019.

Lorne Kusugak, who also serves as minister of Community and Government Services, has been appointed to serve as minister of Human Resources as of April 1, 2019, the premier said.

Sheila Kolola, currently president of Nunavut Arctic College, has been appointed to serve as deputy minister of Human Resources starting next week, on Dec. 17.

“I committed early in my term to the creation of the Department of Human Resources, and I am very excited to get it up and running in the next few months,” Savikataaq said in a release.

“Minister Kusugak has the skills and abilities to ensure fairness and consistency in this important portfolio, and Ms. Kolola has significant experience and success in fostering Inuit employment, training and development.”

The Government of Nunavut announced this past summer its plans to revive the Department of Human Resources,  six years after that department was dissolved in 2012.

In recent years, human resources were dealt with through the GN’s departments of Finance and Executive and Intergovernmental Affairs.

With the department back in place, the government has already highlighted Inuit employment planning as a major priority in addition to a “renewed dedication to employee wellness.”

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(5) Comments:

  1. Posted by all in on

    are you kidding me. the NAC was a mess under kolola. jeez, what a poor move Joe S!

  2. Posted by Angiyuk Pooloo on

    A noble idea indeed. Its about time that the territory establish a Human Resources Department. The territory’s existential mandate is to re-establish self-governance and self-determination and so the refocus on Inuit employment is commendable. I trust that Sheila as the DM will seek long term solutions to Inuit empowerment through comprehensive programs. Lately, Inuit employment has been characterised by stop gap measures and patchwork. 7 day courses attended by Inuit and two year internships will not comprehensively address the serious skills gap that exist among Inuit. The new department must be a vocal lobby group to impress upon Cabinet that for Inuit to truly progress and contribute decisively to Nunavut’s economy, funds and serious programs must be channeled towards the department of Education. Just graduating Grade 12 is not good enough. We need a Department of Education that is 1) In tune with what the labour market wants 2) Holds the department, teachers and school administrators to account 3) Sets clear targets for student achievement, 4) Structures the curriculum and targets to compete with Canada’s provinces and other territories.
    Low hanging fruit for the new department of Human Resources in terms of Inuit Employment include 1) Revising the Casual Staffing process – a lot of abuse of the system exists there 2) Assigning targeted Inuit to Transfer Assignments where Inuit will under-study a qualified non-Iniut and eventually take over the job.

  3. Posted by Sedna on

    Change, change, change.

    This constant change will build managers, but it will not develop leaders.

  4. Posted by Sled dog on

    Why does transfering DM’s in any prov or territory like shuffling deckchairs. If they can do the high level job in one ministry does anyone think they can succeed in another.

    • Posted by Clarity on

      Its to ensure nobody gets targeted if they do a shitty job. Hard to blame who is responsible for the mess up and protects all these high powered people that should be held accountable for the mess they created.

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