BRACEBRIDGE — Continuity amid the COVID-19 crisis appears to be behind an announcement today on a new CAO for the town.

The mayor and council stayed in-house while promoting its treasurer and CFO to the top civil servant job.

In a release Thursday, April 16, officials say that “after a comprehensive recruitment process,” Stephen Rettie will take over June 29, when John Sisson retires.

In addition to his normal duties he will be tasked with leading the pandemic economic recovery process.

“We are very pleased to have Steve assume this crucial role,” said Mayor Graydon Smith.

“His senior management experience as the town’s director of finance/treasurer and his previous positions with the Township of Muskoka Lakes and the private sector have positioned him well to be an outstanding leader of the Town’s administration.”

Rettie said in the release: “Having been a member of the management team for the past five years, and a resident of Bracebridge almost my entire life, I know how great this town is and what we are capable of as a community.

“I look forward to working with mayor Smith, members of council and all town staff, as I transition into this important and influential role, continuing the great work that our residents have come to expect.”

Sisson said: “Steve is well-liked and respected by town staff and he has earned a reputation as a skilled and knowledgeable municipal official.

“He is a great fit to help lead the town’s administration into the future. I look forward to working closely with Steve over the coming weeks to ensure a seamless transition to the corporation’s new leadership.”

Rettie has been Bracebridge’s director of finance/treasurer for more than five years.

He began his municipal career with the Township of Muskoka Lakes, where he was treasurer for three years.

Prior to joining the public service, he worked locally for Muskoka Transport as their controller for over 8 years.

Rettie graduated with a Bachelor of Commerce (Honours) from McMaster University and holds both the Certified Management Accountant (CMA) and Chartered Professional Accountant (CPA) designations. Professional development is an ongoing priority for him through various affiliated organizations such as the Association of Municipal Managers, Clerks and Treasurers of Ontario (AMCTO).

A resident of Bracebridge, he has a wife and two children a priority and an avid sports participant. He is also plays guitar in a band on occasion.

Stephen Rettie, Bracebridge’s financial director and treasurer, has been promoted to CAO as of June 29.