Acme hires Gary Sawatzky as Chief Administrative Officer

Gary Sawatzky

Gary Sawatzky began working as Acme’s new Chief Administrative Officer (CAO) on November 25, 2019. Four weeks in and Acme has its new budget for 2020.

Gary is a certified financial planner and that knowledge was put to good use on year-end deadlines such as budgets. “The budget was the main focus since I arrived and it has now been approved. The mill rate gets set sometime in April.”

Though Gary is still learning the nuances of the community, he feels he has a sense of what small towns are facing and what lay ahead is exactly what he wants to concentrate on. “It’s thinking ahead with long term planning on the significant issues of water, sewer and roads; being proactive rather than reactive.” That involves infrastructure replacement 20 years out. “Some of the research has happened. The final sewer report should be ready in the new year and we need to do an examination of the pump house and explore our options on life span and make preparations in the budget for replacement, repairs, or the appropriate upgrades. It’s about making a plan and building on it in a way that allows us flexibility for adjustments into the future.”

Gary came to Alberta in 2005 from a small town in Saskatchewan. He has spent time in Calgary (presently living there) and four years in Medicine Hat. Gary has been married 38 years, has four children and four grandchildren. His experience includes 25 years of running his own companies that included a small town grocery store, environmental consulting, and some oil and gas. His varied experiences include a term as a school trustee, six years as Mayor (in Saskatchewan), farming and logging (with the in-laws), nine years in the charitable sector, raising quarter horses, and Chief Executive Officer in a facility (similar in size to Acme). Gary even tried out the retirement side, which worked for only two and a half years. On the relaxing side, Gary enjoys curling, reading and wants very much to try out Acme’s racquet ball court.

“I am looking forward to meeting more with the community and continuing to work alongside Council.”