The City of Thompson is looking for its third recreation director since the division of the recreation superintendent position into two roles following Alex Sutherland's retirement in 2007 but the mayor says the relatively short tenures of, most recently, Darlene McLeod and, previously, Bruce Krentz, is no cause for alarm.
"[It's] not causing me a huge deal of concern," Mayor Tim Johnston told the Thompson Citizen following the recent resignation of McLeod, who held the post for a little under two years, taking over in the fall of 2010 after her predecessor Krentz resigned in September of that year after approximately three years as recreation director. "I did get a chance to speak to Darlene briefly. I think she's planning on travelling with her mother for a period of time so I can certainly appreciate that.
McLeod returned home to Thompson to take the recreation director position about two years ago, having previously worked as an event co-ordinator at Harrison Hot Springs in B.C. and as a medevac pilot in the Arctic for two years prior to that. The move represented a return to her roots in more than one way as she had formerly worked as an attendant at the city's outdoor pools to make money in the summers while she was attending the University of Manitoba. After completing her education, she took a job with the Thompson Neighbourhood Renewal Corporation before moving back to the city's recreation department as a recreation co-ordinator. She took the recreation director job at a time when the department was preparing to move its offices to the Norplex Pool while demolition of the old rec centre and construction of the new one began.
At the time of his resignation in September 2010, Krentz said that he would have like to have spent more time focusing on the cultural aspects of the position, but that circumstances led to more of his focus being on assisting the creation of the Thompson skatepark and overseeing the refurbishment of the C.A. Nesbitt Arena.
"With the stimulus money and large capital projects happening it was an opportune time to focus there," Krentz told the Citizen just prior to leaving the city to take a job as a health promotion co-ordinator with the Burntwood Regional Health Authority.