Winnipeg's outgoing CAO will delay retirement until after flood season

Winnipeg's top bureaucrat will stay on in his role a month longer than planned to help with flood efforts, Mayor Brian Bowman's office says.  

Doug McNeil will stay on as chief administrative officer until late May

Winnipeg CAO Doug McNeil is delaying his retirement by a month to help Winnipeg through the 2019 flood season. (John Einarson/CBC)

Winnipeg's top bureaucrat will stay on in his role a month longer than planned to help with flood efforts, Mayor Brian Bowman's office says.  

City of Winnipeg chief administrative officer Doug McNeil announced in February he planned to retire in late April. McNeil will now stay on until the end of May.

"[He] agreed to delay his retirement and continue in his role until the end of May in order to assist the City of Winnipeg together with the Province of Manitoba through this year's flood season," a Thursday news release said.

Manitoba is preparing for a spring flood that could be worse than 2009's, after massive snowstorms fell across the northern United States and the Red River Valley, the province said Monday. 

Winnipeg started making sandbags on Tuesday and already has 30,000 assembled, water and waste committee chair Coun. Cindy Gilroy said Thursday.

Committee looks for replacement

McNeil's more than three decades in public service includes time with the Manitoba Floodway Authority, along with the province and Winnipeg's bureaucracy. 

A council committee will lead the search for the next person to lead Winnipeg's public service. It's made up of members of the mayor's inner circle and some of his opponents.

Members of the search committee include Bowman and councillors Devi Sharma (Old Kildonan), Ross Eadie (Mynarski), Sherri Rollins (Fort Rouge-East Fort Garry) and Matt Allard (St. Boniface).

"In advance, I want to thank them for agreeing to step up and to contribute in a collaborative way on a very important initiative," said Bowman.

The city is currently seeking a consultant to assist the committee in recruiting the next CAO. The bid opportunity for the consultant position closes April 11.

Any recommendation from the committee must then be approved by the mayor's executive policy committee, followed by council.

About the Author

Laura Glowacki is a reporter based in Ottawa and Winnipeg. Previously, she worked as an associate producer for CBC's Metro Morning in Toronto. Find her on Twitter @glowackiCBC and reach her by email at


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