OTTAWA — The CEO of the Royal Canadian Mint has abruptly declared she is leaving her post later this summer after just three years of a five-year term, citing a desire for a better work-life balance.
In a statement, Sandra Hanington says as of July 1, she will resign from her role as chief executive of the Crown corporation that mints and distributes Canada’s monetary coins, a job she described as enjoyable but “highly demanding.”
“After considerable thought and reflection, I am confident the timing of my decision is right for the corporation and for me,” says the statement, posted to the mint’s website Tuesday.
“This experience has been tremendous but also highly demanding. As I move on to the next stage of my career, I hope to attain that elusive balance so many seek in their professional and personal lives.”
Hanington was appointed to the job in February 2015 by the former Conservative government. She had previously been named by the Women’s Executive Network (WXN) three times as one of Canada’s Top 100 most powerful women and was inducted into the WXN Hall of Fame in 2010.
Since taking on the role as ‘master of the mint,’ Hanington has been commuting to Ottawa from her home in Toronto, the costs of which she paid herself, her office confirmed Wednesday. The job itself requires a significant amount of travel and time, and Hanington simply wants to spend more time with family, a spokesperson told The Canadian Press.
“Sandra Hanington has made important contributions to the Royal Canadian Mint, and I highly value her commitment to good governance, innovation and sustainability,” said Finance Minister Bill Morneau.’
“I wish her well as she and her family embark on this new chapter, and thank her for commitment to ensuring a seamless transition.”
Following the recommendation of the mint’s board of directors, Morneau confirmed Jennifer Camelon as interim president and CEO until a permanent replacement is appointed — a process that could take time, if similar vacancies at various federal departments and agencies are any indication.
Meanwhile, in what the mint called an unrelated development, Morneau also announced Wednesday the appointment of a new chair of the mint’s board.
Phyllis Clark will serve a five-year term. She is currently serving on the board of Tec Edmonton, among several executive board positions. She was previously on the board of directors for the Bank of Canada, and held key leadership roles at University of Alberta and York University.
Clark replaces Susan Dujmovic, who has been serving as interim chair following the resignation of Carman Joynt, who stepped down as chair in August 2017 after serving just two years of his five-year term.
The Royal Canadian Mint is a federal Crown corporation. It made headlines last month for firing an employee after about two kilograms of gold, worth about $110,000, was discovered missing from its facility in Ottawa.
In a previous theft incident in 2016, an employee was sentenced to 30 months in prison and ordered to pay $190,000 in restitution after he stole gold “pucks” from the mint by hiding them in his rectum to evade metal detectors.