Mr. Messervey will officially leave the position of CAO on Saturday, Dec. 31st. He has been the CAO of Kawartha Conservation since 2009.
“It’s been a decision in the making for a while,” Mr. Messervey told The Standard. “When I first came to Kawartha, it was a five-year commitment and I kept extending it and extending it.”
Mr. Messervey also said, with a new strategic plan upcoming for the conservation authority, as well as a climate change and stewardship strategy soon to be established, he felt the time was right to make this decision.
He will now take a full time position as a partner with his wife Karen, on their native plant nursery, at their Claremont residence.
“It was a decision I could not make easily, but I feel this decision is best for [Kawartha Conservation] and for my wife,” he said. “[The nursery] has a significant vision, to promote the propagation and dissemination of native plants in the region.”
He also plans to take on senior roles with organizations such as the Multiple Sclerosis Society.
Mr. Messervey has spent 41 years working in the environmental field. Through his career, he has worked at the Otonabee, Central Lake Ontario and Lower Trent Region Conservation Authorities, and has also spent over 20 years working with the Ontario Ministry of Natural Resources. He told The Standard, he first got interested in the environmental field when he was a teenager.
“I spent a lot of years at camp, as both a camper and a counsellor, where I got a lot of education about the natural environment,” he said.
Mr. Messervey said there is one aspect of the business he is going to miss the most.
“This job is very diverse, and involves engaging with a lot of partners and stakeholders, and I’m really going to miss that,” he said. “But, I think where I am heading, I will benefit from making new partnerships.”
He also had some advice for whoever ends up filling his position.
“I think what is an imperative, is relentless outreach and relentless passion of looking for new partnerships and engagement.”