CEO absent from St. Lawrence Parks Commission

In this March 2016, file photo, Darren Dalgleish speaks to attendees at the commission's Partners Day at Upper Canada Village in Morrisburg, Ont. Dalgleish is on an unexplained leave from the commission. (Newswatch Group/Bill Kingston, File)

Editor’s note: This story has been clarified from an earlier version to show St. Lawrence Parks Commission CEO Darren Dalgleish is inexplicably absent from the top position at the commission. An interim or acting CEO is in his place. While Newswatch has reported the story in good faith, we have been unable to independently verify whether Dalgleish is still an employee of the commission. Newswatch regrets any confusion the story may have caused.

MORRISBURG – The chief executive officer from the St. Lawrence Parks Commission is on an unexplained leave from the tourist agency and an acting CEO has been installed.

“Darren…he is currently out of the workplace,” said Susan Le Clair, manager of customer service and corporation communications, when contacted by Newswatch Tuesday.

Le Clair referred questions about Darren Dalgleish to the Ontario Ministry of Tourism.

“At this point, all I can say it’s a confidential human resources matter and it’s being addressed by senior staff,” said Denelle Balfour, spokesperson for the Ministry of Tourism, Culture and Sport.

Phone calls attempting to reach Dalgleish through the automated voice mail system at the St. Lawrence Parks Commission have automatically been forwarded to Acting CEO Ronald Holgerson. An attempt to reach Dalgleish via email Monday afternoon was also unsuccessful.

Dalgleish has been CEO of the St. Lawrence Parks Commission since 2011 after leaving his job as chief administrative officer with the Town of Gananoque.

He had overseen the transformation of the tourism attraction, lifting the commission from $7.5 million in debt in 2012 to $3.2 million in red ink in the 2015-16 fiscal year.

During his tenure, Dalgleish announced the Skywood Eco Adventure Park near Gananoque and Fort Frost, later named Lumina Borealis, at Fort Henry in Kingston.

According to the Ontario Public Sector Salary Disclosure, Dalgleish was making $166,378 in 2015 for his work as general manager and chief executive officer.

Ronald Holgerson, formerly with the Ontario Tourism Marketing Partnership Corporation (OTMP), is overseeing the St. Lawrence Parks Commission as acting chief executive officer.

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