Appointed on January 13, 2020, Dr. Greg Finnegan (PhD) is the Manager of the North West Saskatchewan Policy Unit (Policy North), which is located within the Johnson Shoyama Graduate School of Public Policy (JSGS) at the University of Saskatchewan (USask). Under the leadership of Canada Research Chair Ken Coates, Greg is responsible for managing research, monitoring budgets, and for building and overseeing a team that works with and supports the economic and governance needs of northern communities.
Greg comes to USask with over thirty years of professional experience in socio-economic and environmental analysis and in business and project management. Prior to his appointment, he served as the Chief Executive Officer at the award-winning Na-cho Nyäk Dun Development Corporation (NNDDC) in Whitehorse, Yukon (2016-2020). NNDDC was originally created to provide business consulting services to the mining and mineral exploration sector in partnership with Victoria Gold, Alexco Resource and junior mining firms. By 2020, NNDDC owned or was partnered in a diverse group of companies including groceries and food production (CropBox), hotel and restaurant ownership, mining and exploration (including its own Big River Mineral Exploration company), camp construction and services, fuel services, solar power, heavy equipment and airplane leasing, drilling and environmental services with plans to expand into tourism, arts and culture and Indigenous business consulting services.
He has also served as a Climate Change Consultant (2012-2017), Senior Consultant with DPRA Canada (2011-2012), Chief Statistician and Director for the Yukon Bureau of Statistics within the Yukon government (2007-2011), Executive Director for a number of non-profit organizations in the environmental sector (2002-2006), Consultant with NovaTec Consultants Inc. (2002-2006), Director of Planning and Community Affairs with Trademark Pacific Properties (1999-2002), and as Acting Chief Geographer for National Atlas and Information Service Canada (1992-1994).
Greg holds a Doctorate in Canadian geography and regional economic development from York University and continues to research and publish on Northern and Indigenous labour market issues. He has also taught Geography and Canadian Studies at various universities including the University of Western Ontario, York University, Carleton University, University of British Columbia, and Simon Fraser University.