N.W.T.'s Business Advisory Council loses co-chair, 2 other members replaced

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The council set up to guide the Northwest Territories government in its economic response to the COVID-19 pandemic has lost a co-chair, and two other members have been replaced.

The 17-member Business Advisory Council started meeting in early June to give advice to the minister of Industry, Tourism and Investment on lessening the short-term effects of COVID-19 on N.W.T. businesses, and on longer-term actions the territory can take to help the businesses rebound.

On Friday Paul Gruner, president and CEO of Det'on Cho Management LP, the economic development arm of the Yellowknives Dene First Nation, said he stepped down recently as co-chair of the council to focus on his company during the pandemic.

Jenni Bruce, president of the NWT Chamber of Commerce and regional manager at Midwest Property Management is now the council's sole chair. She said it's too early to say what will happen with the vacancy left by Gruner.

Bruce said the two other changes on the council were a result of people leaving the organizations they were named to represent. She said each seat was filled by a person from the same organization that lost its representative.

Duc Trinh, representing the Northwest Territories and Nunavut Construction Association, was replaced by Trevor Kasteel, who now represents the construction association.

Donna Lee DeMarcke of the Hay River Chamber of Commerce took a position with NWT Tourism, said Bruce. Her spot was filled by Terry Rowe, the president of the Hay River Chamber of Commerce.