Sudbury lawyer Martin Bayer has been chosen to be the first chairman of the Northern Policy Institute (NPI).
The appointment was made Feb. 20 at the group's inaugural meeting at Algoma University in Sault Ste. Marie.
Dr. George Macey, a Marathon dentist, was selected vice-chairman.
The Northern Policy Institute is the regional policy think tank promised by the Ontario government and supported with $5 million.
“I am honoured to be selected to serve as NPI’s chair,” said Bayer in a statement released through Lakehead University. “I look forward to the important work we will do for Northerners in the coming years.”
Bayer is a partner with the law firm of Weaver Simmons LLP in Sudbury.
“I consider it a privilege to serve this institute,” said Macey, “and I thank the members of the board for the responsibilities they have bestowed on me.
Macey is a community activist in Marathon, is involved in the chamber of commerce movement and in party politics for more than 30 years.
On Feb. 1, ten appointees from seven Northern Ontario communities were named to serve on the inaugural board of directors.
They included: Bayor, Macey, Florence Bailey (Sioux Lookout), Thérèse Bergeron-Hopson (Timmins), Harley d’Entremont (North Bay), Hal McGonigal (Sault Ste. Marie), Doug Murray (Thunder Bay), and Madge Richardson (Thunder Bay).
Lakehead University president Brian Stevenson and Laurentian University president Dominic Giroux serve as voting ex-officio members.
On the board's agenda in the Sault was discussing the desired profile for the first president and chief executive officer of the NPI. Janet Wright & Associates Inc. were selected to be the search firm.
The government said the purpose of the institute is to “develop and promote proactive, evidence-based and purpose-driven policy options that deepen understanding about the unique challenges and opportunities of Northern Ontario in addition to advancing the sustainable development and long-term economic prosperity of the North.”