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Dalron president named to Northern Ontario advisory council

By: Sudbury Northern Life Staff

 | May 13, 2014 - 4:06 PM |

Think tank aims to offer expert advice

THUNDER BAY – Ron Arnold, the president of Sudbury builder Dalron Construction, has been named to the inaugural Northern Policy Institute Advisory Council.

Charles Cirtwill, president and CEO of the institute, announced Arnold's appointment Tuesday, along with five other council members: Murray Coolican, Barbara Courte Elinesky, Brian Davey, Tony Dean and Don Drummond.

“Northern Policy Institute’s first advisory council members have been strategically selected for their experience, knowledge and connections in key sectors across the entire Northern Ontario region,” a release from the institute said.

“The advisory council provides invaluable communication and access to sector-specific researchers and key stakeholders. Members also provide support and strategic guidance on the overall organizational direction of Northern Policy Institute.”

More members will be appointed as candidates express interest and as gaps in expertise on the council are identified.

Arnold has been president of Dalron since 1969 and has also served on many local boards. Cirtwill said the council will be able to offer expert advice on insight on how to move Northern Ontario's economy forward.

“Individually and collectively, these individuals bring an incredible wealth of knowledge in their respective fields,” he said in the release. “Their contributions will be vital for supporting Northern Policy Institute’s overall organizational direction and strategic actions.”

Some background on the other members:

-Murray Coolican, a former senior Ontario public servant, is Nova Scotia's deputy minister of Energy. He has held numerous leadership positions in the not-for-profit, government, political and private sectors.

-Barbara Courte Elinesky is CEO of two drilling companies: Cobra Diamond Drilling and North Star Drilling. She is also a board member on Thunder Bay Community Economic Development Commission and the Thunder Bay Chamber of Commerce.

-Brian Davey is executive director of Nishnawbe Aski Development Fund and was previously economic development manager for Matawa First Nations Tribal Council. He has worked for more than 28 years on First Nation issues, mostly related to economic and business development.

-Tony Dean, former secretary to the cabinet and head of the Ontario Public Service, is a professor at the School of Public Policy and Governance at the University of Toronto. In 2010, he was appointed senior research fellow at the Harvard Kennedy School’s Ash Institute for Democratic Governance and Innovation.

-Don Drummond was appointed to the Donald Matthews Faculty Fellowship on Global Public Policy at Queen's University in June 2010 and to co-chair the C. D. Howe Institute’s Fiscal and Tax Competitiveness Council in March 2011.

Northern Policy Institute is Northern Ontario’s first think tank and provides evidence-based research and recommendations to government and industry on policies and programs that have the potential to strengthen Northern Ontario economies and communities. It's a non-profit group with offices in Thunder Bay and Sudbury.

For more on the institute, visit

NPI provides proactive, evidence-based and purpose driven recommendations to government and industry on policies and programs that strengthen the regional economy and create a more competitive and productive Northern Ontario.

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