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Posted: December 18, 2015

New board chair to guide the Trust

Rick Jensen steps in as Greg Deck retires from Columbia Basin Trust board

Columbia Basin Trust announces several updates to its Board of Directors, including the appointment of Rick Jensen as chair and the retirement of current chair Greg Deck.

From Cranbrook, Jensen is replacing Deck as chair as of January 1. He joined the Trust Board in 2013 and served as vice-chair in 2015.

Greg Deck, the last of the originals, bows away from CBT board. CBT images
Greg Deck, the last of the originals, bows away from CBT board. CBT images

The Trust also thanks and extends its best wishes to Greg Deck, who is now retiring. From Radium Hot Springs, Deck has been on the board since the Trust’s inception in 1995, serving as vice-chair from 2008 to 2012 and chair from 2013 to 2015.

“On behalf of the Trust’s Board and staff, I would like to thank Greg Deck for his contributions to the formation and growth of the Trust,” said Jensen. “For over 20 years, he has been an instrumental part of this organization and has dedicated his efforts to the well-being of our region and its residents.”

Jensen has lived in Cranbrook since 1976, where he and his wife Marguerite raised their two children and are actively involved with their five grandchildren. He served as Mayor of Cranbrook for three terms, 1983 to 1990 and as a director of the Regional District of East Kootenay (RDEK) for seven years and was involved with numerous community groups, including being on the Board of the Cranbrook and District Hospital.

Jensen served as a board member of Crestbrook Forest Industries Ltd., a wholly owned subsidiary of Tembec, until CFI was wound up into Tembec. He was a board member, and President and CEO of Panorama Mountain Village Inc. from 2010 to 2014. He is a board member of New Dawn Restorations Ltd.

For the past 24 years, he has been the President of Canadian Institute of Excellence, an educational company that delivers management and personal development training. While he has owned many businesses his passion is with construction and development and together with his son Chad, they have built New Dawn Developments into the largest construction and development company in the East Kootenay, specializing in residential and commercial construction of all sizes. Rick is active in the management and is a Board member and Chairman of New Dawn. He is also a board member of Columbia Power Corporation.

Nakusp’s Laurie Page, who joined the board in January 2012, is being reappointed until December 2018 and is taking over as vice-chair. She also served as vice-chair from 2013 to 2014.

Page is a veterinarian in Nakusp. She and her husband Bill Sones have operated their business, Nakusp Veterinary Clinic, and raised two children since moving there in 1990. She is past chair of Arrow & Slocan Lakes Community Services and has worked on projects involving affordable housing, seniors’ services, youth empowerment and supporting mental health. As former chair and current vice-chair of the Nakusp and Area Development Board, she is currently facilitating community engagement, organizational development and projects to enhance the area’s economic self-sufficiency.

“The Trust has achieved remarkable success, and I’m confident Rick Jensen, Laurie Page and the rest of the board will carry this success forward,” said Deck. “This is a solid team committed to an extraordinary organization that will continue to serve the Basin well.”

As a celebration of nearly seven years on the Board of Columbia Basin Trust, Kim Deane, alongside wife Gillian Deane, was presented with a photograph of the Columbia River.
As a celebration of nearly seven years on the Board of Columbia Basin Trust, Kim Deane, alongside wife Gillian Deane, was presented with a photograph of the Columbia River.

The Trust also wishes the best to Kim Deane of Rossland. He has been on the board since 2009, and is retiring as of the end of 2015.

Two new members are joining the board for one-year terms, expiring December 2016. Michael Delich joins the board from Fernie, where he is an active entrepreneur, community leader and sport leader. Rhonda Ruston joins the board from Kaslo, where she is a lawyer and has served on the boards of the Kaslo InfoNet Society and Kaslo Institute.

Nelson’s Am Naqvi is being reappointed to the board until December 2018. Other board members include Larry Binks (Creston), Wendy Booth (RDEK Electoral Area F/Fairmont Hot Springs), Gord DeRosa (Trail), John Dooley (Nelson), Loni Parker (Revelstoke), Vickie Thomas (?aq’am) and Jeannette Townsend (Valemount).

“I’d like to thank Greg Deck for his years of dedicated service and leadership as chair of the Trust, and for all the help, sound guidance and advice he has shared with me personally as a resident of the Columbia Basin and in my work as an MLA and minister,” said Kootenay East MLA and Minister of Energy and Mines Bill Bennett. “I’d also like to welcome Rick Jensen and Laurie Page to their new roles. I look forward to working with them and the rest of the board as they continue to invest and deliver benefits to the Basin, improving lives, communities and the environment.”

Deck was the first Mayor of the Village of Radium Hot Springs, serving for 18 years. He was also a Regional District of East Kootenay director for that period, ending with six years as chair. He continues to sit as a founding director of the Trust, a director of Columbia Power Corporation and a director of Columbia Basin Broadband Corporation. He and his wife Meaghan have operated a tourism business in Radium since 1980. He is also the provincially-appointed Mayor of the Jumbo Glacier Mountain Resort Municipality.

The Trust’s 12-member board consists of individuals appointed by the provincial government: six from the five regional districts and the Ktunaxa Nation Council, and six others. All directors must live in the Basin.

The board meets five times a year in communities around the Basin. The public is invited to attend in order to meet the directors and ask questions about the organization’s work in the Basin. The next meeting is in Nelson on Friday, February 12, 2016.

For more information about the board, and to read highlights and minutes from board meetings, visit

Columbia Basin Trust supports efforts to deliver social, economic and environmental benefits to the residents of the Columbia Basin. To learn more about the Trust’s programs and initiatives, visit or call 1-800-505-8998.


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