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Access Prosperity terminates manager

Central Alberta: Access Prosperity has terminated the contract of its manager.

Gary Slipp’s involvement with the economic development organization ended last Wednesday, confirmed Curtis Herzberg, Red Deer County’s manager.

Herzberg declined to elaborate on the reasons for the move, explaining that he couldn’t comment on a personnel matter.

“The decision was a unanimous board decision that it was important to go in a different direction as to how we were going to complete this for the remainder of the project,” he said.

Central Alberta: Access Prosperity is a partnership involving Red Deer Regional Economic Development and Central Alberta Economic Partnership, with the former organization an alliance of the City of Red Deer, Red Deer County, the Red Deer Chamber of Commerce and Red Deer College.

Its mandate is to support local businesses, attract investment from international businesses, and promote business-to-business relationships that benefit the region.

A former employee with Calgary Economic Development, Slipp assumed his position as manager six months ago.

He replaced Cyril Cooper, who had managed Central Alberta: Access Prosperity while serving as Red Deer’s economic development officer, before resigning from the city.

Herzberg said Central Alberta: Access Prosperity’s work has not been jeopardized by the loss of its manager.

“We’ve got a couple of different options in terms of how we resource this,” he said.

A new manager might be hired, or staff from one of the partners could step in to fill the void, Herzberg said.

A decision should be made within days, he said.

“Time is of the essence. We want to move forward quickly.”

Government funding for Central Alberta: Access Prosperity is due to expire next year, but Herzberg believes the project will still achieve its objectives.

“The members of the board had that uppermost in their minds when they were making the decision we’ve had to make. We’re very confident we can deliver on this project and continue to succeed with this.”

Slipp said he did not want to comment at this time.



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