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Longtime mayoral assistant steps down

Peter Crnorgorac
Northern News Services

Yellowknife (Nov 03/06) - Rosalie Power was working in the city's audit bureau in 1995 when her manager, David Lovell, became mayor of Yellowknife.

Rather than saying goodbye to Lovell, she went to City Hall to assist him.

He left his position of mayor in 2000, but Power's reputation as a hard worker and dynamic organizer left incoming Mayor Gordon Van Tighem with no choice but to keep her.

"When I was first elected in 2000, my wife said to me, 'You have to keep Rosalie,'" Van Tighem said.

Power first arrived in Yellowknife on Dec. 23, 1975 from Rainbow Lake, Alta.

Since becoming the mayor's assistant, Power has seen government business, and Yellowknife in general, evolve.

"So much more is now happening in Yellowknife than was happening in 1995," Power said. "The city is dealing with a lot more business with the boom in construction and the diamond mine."

Power's duties over the last 11 years mainly involved making sure the mayor knew what his schedule was.

She would interact with many government officials across Canada and the world- something she said was her favourite part of the job.

Power was known by her city hall co-workers as having a spitfire personality.

"She's a fellow Newfie with a good heart," said Leah Russell, who works in the city's economic development department. "It'll be much... quieter around here when she leaves."

Power said she has many fond memories from working at City Hall, but one meeting in particular stands out.

"Meeting Governor General Michaelle Jean was an amazing experience," said Power."She came here in June. She was so personable. You can talk to her like you would your best friend."

Power retired and on Oct. 28 she left Yellowknife with her husband, James Gill, for her new home in Victoria.

Power will not only be missed by co-workers at City Hall, but Yellowknifers in general for her dedicated service to such groups as the Block Parent Program and the SPCA, according to friends.

"She's a very active person in the community," said Van Tighem. "She's not someone who lets obstacles get in her way."

On Power's last day at City Hall, she reflected on her time spent in Yellowknife.

"I have mixed feelings about leaving," she said. "Yellowknife has been great. I've made many friends here. But, I'm happy because we have a place to go."

Sara Morgan, a receptionist at City Hall, took over Power's duties on Oct. 30.

On Oct. 27, Morgan said she was looking forward to her new position.

"It's going to be interesting," said Morgan. "A challenge is always good-it's going to be an adventure."