After much political posturing within the inner circles of the Winnipeg business community, the announcement was made that Diane Gray - Manitoba's first female Deputy Finance Minister - has been named CEO of CentrePort Canada, Winnipeg's inland port.
Gray appears to have been the natural fit having been a major conduit in helping the inland port gain legs within all three levels of government and the private sector. The CEO position requires an individual capable of playing in both arenas, and Gray has much experience in handling this fine balance.
At this point, CentrePort Canada has been more a concept than an actual project. Much of the delays in moving the project forward to this point have been in finding the right person for the CEO position, and according to Kerry Hawkins, co-chairman of CentrePort Canada, they couldn't have found a more qualified person for the job.
"Without a CEO we are pretty much rudderless," says Hawkins. "We've been getting so many inquiries but we had to put them off because we weren't ready." We needed someone who could work with government and the private sector to get the port going, and find overseas markets. She's been there and has been doing all of those things already."
Winnipeg's inland port sits on 20,000 acres of land around the Richardson International Airport, and is being touted as a major hub for the manufacturing, distribution and warehousing of goods in North America.
For more information on the inland port go to http://www.winnipeginlandport.ca/