WINNIPEG – The president and CEO of Manitoba Hydro has announced he is retiring less than three years after joining the Crown corporation.
Kelvin Shepherd, who joined the utility in December 2015 after a five-year stint at MTS Inc., says in a release that he will be stepping down Nov. 16.
Manitoba Hydro’s board of directors, citing an inability to work with the provincial government, resigned en masse in March.
Premier Brian Pallister said the dispute stemmed from a multimillion-dollar deal, which was quashed by the government, between the utility and the Manitoba Metis Federation.
The deal was designed to forestall opposition to future power-related projects and the agreement’s demise prompted the federation to pursue court action.
Weeks later, the province’s Public Utilities Board rejected Manitoba Hydro’s request to raise electricity rates by almost eight per cent at a time the Crown is building northern power stations and a transmission line to bring electricity south.
During his tenure, Shepherd oversaw the elimination of hundreds of positions through voluntary departures that were expected to save the company more than $90 million a year in operating costs.
Shepherd said in a release that it’s been a privilege to lead the hard-working people at Manitoba Hydro and that it was a difficult personal decision for him to leave.
“Like any job, the position of CEO comes with both good and bad that one must accept and manage,” he said. “I have done my best to lead our company through both the challenges and opportunities we have faced, but I know in my heart that now is the right time to move on to a new stage in my life.”
Marina James, the recently appointed chair of the Manitoba Hydro board, said Shepherd is leaving the corporation with a stronger senior leadership team.
“Kelvin has been an invaluable asset and he has played an exemplary role as the CEO of this company,” she said.
A search for a new president and CEO is already underway.