New appointments to CNLOPB include Danny’s brother

James McLeod jmcleod@thetelegram.com
Published on January 24, 2013

The government has filled two seats on the board fo the province’s offshore regulator, appointing Scott Tessier to the job of CEO and chair of the board, and Ed Williams as vice-chair.

Williams is the brother of former premier Danny Williams.

The news release was e-mailed to The Telegram at 5:30 p.m.

“Today’s decision results from a cooperative and thorough search for new management of the board based on merit and ability,” said federal Natural Resources Minister Joe Oliver in the news release. “Scott Tessier brings a wealth of regulatory experience and expertise to the C-NLOPB, which will benefit the organization greatly.”

The background biographical information on the two appointees lists Tessier as “a respected leader with extensive experience in the public and private sectors.” He has served in political positions in the past as chief of staff to the Minister of the Canadian Northern Economic Development Agency, and most recently he was senior adviser of Legislative and Regulatory Affairs at Chevron Canada Resources in Calgary, Alta.

Williams has worked as for mining company Aurora Energy Resources, as well as the Terra Nova and Hibernia offshore oil projects. Williams has been heavily involved in the PC party, and travelled on Premier Kathy Dunderdale’s campaign bus during the 2011 general election.

Recently he was widely understood to be working in the premier’s office, although he was never listed as a government employee.

The CNLOPB’s board has been looking a bit empty in recent months; one of the province’s seats on the board has been vacant for more than two years. The leadership of the board has been in flux since current chairman Max Ruelokke’s six-year term ended on Oct. 26.

This is not the first controversial appointment to the CNLOPB. Shortly after Danny Williams retired as premier in 2010, his director of communications, Elizabeth Matthews, was nominated as vice-chair of the board. The appointment was painted as a patronage position, and amid public outcry, her nomination was withdrawn.