Glen Murray targeted by allegations of harassment and mismanagement | Manitoba Municipal Elections 2022

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Glen Murray targeted by allegations of harassment and mismanagement | ÉManitoba Municipal Elections 2022

Winnipeg mayoral candidate reportedly forced out of his 'dream job' at the Pembina Institute.

Winnipeg mayoral candidate Glen Murray.

Winnipeg mayoral candidate Glen Murray was reportedly forced out of his 'dream job' a year after taking office in management of the Pembina Institute, following complaints about its management, according to former employees and documents obtained by CBC.

Glen's lawyer Murray denies these allegations and says he quit for personal and family reasons.

For 370 days in 2017-18, Glen Murray served as CEO of the Pembina Institute, a Calgary-based clean energy think tank.

A CBC investigation into his tenure with the environmental body reports allegations that he made sexual innuendos in the workplace, he physically harassed a former employee at a rally of the company and allegedly had excessive alcohol consumption at parties.

As described by former employees of the Pembina Institute, Glen Murray is a messy person who breached confidentiality, refused briefing notes, missed some internal meetings, arrived late to meetings with government and corporate leaders, often did not respond to communications, and had unscrupulous practices. questionable management.

Mr. Murray's mayoral campaign team declined repeated requests for interviews about his time at the Pembina Institute. On Tuesday, the candidate himself said he would be happy to answer questions on the subject and asked CBC to make an appointment, but his team later rejected the request.

Mr. Murray's attorney, Bailey Harris, wrote in a letter on Tuesday that all of the harassment allegations against Mr. Murray related to his time at the Pembina Institute are categorically false and that they are untrue. #x27;were ever brought to the attention of his client.

Mr. Murray wishes to be very clear: no allegations or reports of sexual harassment were ever brought to the attention of Mr. Murray while employed by the Pembina Institute or by the suite, said Bailey Harris.

According to a Probe Research poll, released Sept. 26, Murray is the leader in the race for mayor of Winnipeg. He would garner the support of 40% of determined voters in Winnipeg.

Mr. Murray was mayor of Winnipeg from 1998 to 2004. He resigned midway through his second term in an unsuccessful attempt to become a federal Liberal MP.

He then moved to Toronto where, in 2010, he was elected as a Liberal Member of the Ontario Legislative Assembly. He was appointed to Cabinet shortly after his election.

In 2017, a year before an Ontario election the Liberals would lose, Glen Murray resigned from his Toronto seat- Center to become CEO of the Pembina Institute.

There's no right time to get into politics and no right time to get out of it, had he then claimed to the Globe and Mail.

Glen Murray held various ministerial positions in the Liberal government of Kathleen Wynne in Ontario. (archives)

Shortly after leaving his post as mayor of Winnipeg, Glen Murray was appointed by the Liberals as chair of the National Roundtable on the Environment and the Environment ;economy. He had called his role as head of the Pembina Institute a dream job.

Founded in the 1980s, the Pembina Institute conducts research and analysis on energy consumption and makes energy policy recommendations.

The President of the board described it as a high-risk, high-reward appointment, says former Pembina Institute fundraiser Iain McMullan of Glen Murray's appointment.


Iain McMullan is the first person Glen Murray hired after taking the reins of the nonprofit. This corporate fundraising veteran served as Director of Strategic Partnerships for the Pembina Institute under Mr. Murray.

According to him, if Mr. Murray has a formidable public presence, he has also proven to be inherently unreliable on just about everything once off stage.

In my experience, says Mr. McMullan, he can be an inspiration, but he can also harm others.

I have it seen giving speeches – 20-30 minute speeches without notes or with a borrowed PowerPoint – and holding the audience in the palm of his hand. And everyone thought he was fantastic…I saw him do that. But, the rest of the time, it is disjointed. He is a messy person.

Glen Murray began his employment with the Pembina Institute on September 5, 2017. According to former employees, he continued to reside in Toronto while working for the organization, but visited the Calgary and Vancouver offices.

Several former employees say Glen Murray's behavior quickly raised red flags, particularly his sexually charged statements in the workplace and in individual meetings with staff members.

Duncan Kenyon served as Director of the Pembina Institute for Oil and Gas and Director for Alberta. He says that during a walk, Glen Murray began by praising his work and then began to talk about his sex life.

Glen Murray allegedly says he likes having sex outside of his relationship.

He throws window dressing at you, then continues with sexual conversations. It's not the kind of discussion you have with a co-worker, let alone your boss, says Kenyon.

A former board member at administration of the Pembina Institute who CBC has agreed to grant anonymity says the board was aware of the allegations by Mr. Kenyon and two other staff members who said they were exposed to Mr. Murray's sexual innuendo.

This does not include former Pembina Institute CEO Ed Whittingham, who mentions witnessing sexual innuendo during a one-on-one conversation with Glen Murray, on his successor's first day on the job.

He said a few things about his personal life, and in particular the open nature of his relationship with her husband and the possibility of having sex outside of his relationship, which put me very uncomfortable and immediately made me think, ''God, did we make the wrong choice?''

< p class="e-p">It's an inappropriate conversation to have with anyone on the day of his arrival, even with me, the outgoing general manager.

M . Whittingham says he was so troubled after that meeting that he thought of calling David Runnalls, then chairman of the Pembina Institute board.

I thought to myself that I was probably exaggerating, that I was on my way out. This was my successor. If I made that call, in fact, I was literally going to get my successor in trouble from day one. I did not make that decision. I now regret not having made that call, he adds.

According to Duncan Kenyon, Glen Murray also went beyond the sexual connotations and had physical contact with him. He alleges that Mr. Murray rubbed against him, his pelvis against his buttocks, at a reception hosted by the organization in Banff in March 2018.

Duncan Kenyon was director of the Pembina Oil and Gas Institute and director for Alberta.

He walks up to me and starts doing a very suggestive sex dance, he says. You know, the smear. There were a lot of people on the dance floor. So it was quite difficult for people to see what exactly was going on. My Boss Rubbing Up On Me On The Dance Floor: It Was Pretty Amazing!

Former Managing Director Ed Whittingham Says Mr. Kenyon Told Him of the incident two days later.

Duncan laughed it off, as men and women sometimes do in these situations, especially men who receive sexual advances from other men, Mr. Whittingham recalled.

M. Kenyon says he informed the assistant director of the Pembina Institute, his immediate supervisor, and believed he was taken seriously. This manager did not respond to CBC's requests for comment. Mr. Kenyon says he took no further action.

He acknowledges that the privilege associated with his role in the organization influenced his decision, unlike a younger man or woman in the same position.

We are older men, it's not the end of the world for us. It's only unpleasant, he argues.

Bailey Harris says all allegations of harassment against his client are false and that Glen Murray was never made aware of such allegations.

As far as he knows, no one has ever filed a complaint against him, she wrote in her letter to CBC.

Bailey Harris also writes that former Pembina Institute Board Chairman David Runnalls has been adamant that no Institute manager has approached the board. complaints of this nature against Mr. Murray.

Mr. Runnalls confirms to CBC that he is not aware of any such complaint against the Pembina Institute and that nothing has been presented to the board of directors. ;administration.

Former employees have alleged that Glen Murray drank excessively at some corporate social functions and public events.

He regularly got drunk at events organized by the Pembina Institute and became completely drunk, claims Duncan Kenyon.

He claims Mr. Murray could barely walk at an event in Vancouver attended by then-Environment Minister Catherine McKenna.

M. Kenyon also mentions that his boss was drunk the night he allegedly physically harassed him in Banff.

Former Senior Advisor and Director of Industrial Decarbonization at the Pembina Institute, Jason Switzer, corroborates the claim that Glen Murray drank binge that night.

As we were walking […] back to our hotel from one of the bars we were staying in, he was barely able to walk. He was really, really drunk.

I think it may be a reflection of his wanting to relax with colleagues, but you don't want to see anyone ;one who is in a managerial position breaking the ice with his staff in this way.

Mr. Murray's campaign team did not respond to requests for comment on allegations of his excessive drinking during Pembina Institute events.

Also according to former employees of the Pembina Institute and documents obtained by CBC, Glen Murray's management practices have aroused distrust among longtime employees, which has allegedly driven four of them them to leave the organization due to professionalism concerns.

In 2017, a staff member wrote to the Pembina Institute Board of Directors: Glen discusses confidential information with any staff who will listen.

He has been told things confidentially and he comments out loud at various staff meetings. This is confidential information, told to him in confidence, about sexual harassment, mental health, etc., the former employee wrote in an email dated November 17, 2017, that is two months after Mr. Murray joined the organization.

It should be kept confidential and not disclosed on every call or hallway conversation, notes the former staff member who is worried about defamation or harassment lawsuits.

Former Pembina Institute employees also lay out a long list of complaints about their former boss.

Three of them told CBC they couldn't get Mr. Murray to stick to his intended message when he met with potential donors, government leaders or government officials. ;environmental organizations.

It became pretty clear, and perhaps unsurprisingly, that he was going to go his own way and no one was going to be able to give him directions, claims Jason Switzer.

He really had his own take on things, and if he liked a particular set of talking points, he followed them. But, essentially, he improvised on any type of issue.

Former Pembina Institute fundraiser Iain McMullan says he found the Approach to Glen Murray very difficult.

I was never really able to establish a constructive working relationship with him in the six months we were together, he says. I tried very hard. I get the feeling he just didn't want to be briefed on the cases.

Jason Switzer and Duncan Kenyon also note that Glen Murray often met with people outside the organization without taking notes to inform staff of the topics discussed during these meetings. They were often unaware of his whereabouts, they point out.

We never knew who Glen was meeting, we didn't know what he had discussed. He did not come to see us to tell us that he was going to meet so-and-so, says Duncan Kenyon.

He regularly organized meetings without anyone being there to take advice. notes, so we had no idea what to do next, Switzer adds.

There was no sort of certainty that we were going to get any results from any of the meetings he was hosting, either with government partners or commercial partners, he continues.

Glen Murray's predecessor as CEO of the Pembina Institute, Ed Whittingham, says he helped former employees get Glen Murray out because he posed a “threat” to the organization.

Former employees also complained that Glen Murray was often late for appointments. His predecessor, Ed Whittingham, recounted that on one occasion he flew to Calgary and had to wait so long that he considered leaving.

Mr. Whittingham says he waited the same way when he arranged a meeting between Mr. Murray and the executive of a Calgary oil and gas company.

He arrived 40 minutes late, and the CEO, like me, was about to get up and leave.

Duncan Kenyon says Glen Murray embarrassed the Pembina Institute by interrupting business and government officials during meetings.

They didn't couldn't get a word in. It was not a discussion. It was just Glen Murray's sermon.

Duncan Kenyon mentions that Mr. Murray promoted less experienced employees to management positions in order to insulate himself from the long-time staff.

He's very personable, he can be very likeable and charismatic, but in many ways he actually makes people his allies and isn't genuine in many of his interactions, says Duncan Kenyon portraying these exchanges as a divide and conquer strategy.

At first, people were a bit skeptical. And then, later, it became clear that he really wasn't doing his job.

Glen Murray's campaign team didn't responded to requests for comment on complaints about its management.

In March 2018, the Pembina Institute Board and staff from across Canada gathered in Banff for an annual seminar to strategize and have in-person discussions.

Former employees claim that not only did Glen Murray drink heavily, but he did not prepare enough for the multi-day rally, which ;they called it the most important of the year.

The meeting itself was so badly organized – after years of meticulous planning to get results – that at the time, I think there was a kind of general feeling of fatigue among staff, says Switzer.

It was a mess. It was driving everybody crazy, everybody was like, 'You know, this is really important. We only do this once a year. Let's work together on the agenda.''

And he decided to pull a bunch of rabbits out of his hat, complains Iain McMullan.< /p>

According to him, these surprise items included new directions and an exercise in rejuvenating the brand image of the Institute.

Several former employees said the event ended up creating solidarity among staff members who wanted Glen Murray gone.

The Pembina Institute is a Calgary-based clean energy think tank.

To be honest, that's when people started planning what to do to get him gone, because he was doing so much damage, emphasizes Mr. Kenyon.

After the staff retired to Banff, directors of the Pembina Institute began meeting with the intention of filing a complaint against Glen Murray's management before the board of directors. x27;admin, says Duncan Kenyon.

Ed Whittingham says he joined efforts to oust Mr Murray after he became the unofficial, unnamed manager who listened empathetically to his former colleagues.

The last thing I wanted was to be part of the ousting of my successor, but at the time I thought the existence of the Institute was at stake and I really had to act. he.

Ed Whittingham says he first met with a board member in June 2018 to tell him that the organization had no failed to exercise due diligence in the case of Glen Murray.

He says he later told board chairman David Runnalls that the situation with Glen Murray was beyond repair and that he had to leave.

M. Whittingham says the Pembina Institute tapped George Greene, the founder of environmental consulting firm Stratos, to conduct a series of interviews with senior executives as well as a survey. with the staff.

Duncun Kenyon says he was among those interviewed by Mr. Greene. He says he discussed Glen Murray's management practices and failed to mention the allegations of sexual innuendo and the swipe-and-swipe incident that occurred in Banff.

Mr. Greene interviewed Pembina Institute employees in July and August 2018 and presented a summary of his findings to the Board of Directors at an emergency meeting on August 24, 2018, according to documents obtained by CBC.

George Greene did not respond to CBC's requests for comment.

Glen Murray's attorney, Bailey Harris, confirms that George Greene provided a verbal report to the board of directors.

David Runnalls served Glen Murray with a layoff notice a week later, according to the documents.

These documents show that Mr. Murray asked to resign, which he was granted. On September 9, 2018, Mr. Runnalls informed senior leadership of the organization that Glen Murray had elected to resign.

Mr. Murray left on September 10, 2018.

While I'm looking forward to a new challenge, the Pembina Institute is a very tough place and team to leave, he said at the time.

In response to CBC's requests for comment this week, Glen Murray's attorney provided a different reason for his departure.

Mr. Murray resigned from the Pembina Institute four years ago (2018) for personal and family reasons, writes Bailey Harris in a letter to CBC.

L&#x27 Former Chairman of the Board at the time publicly thanked Mr. Murray for his leadership.

During his tenure, Glen was a great accelerator for the #x27;organization and its staff, said David Runnalls in a press release in 2018.

This week he declined to comment on the circumstances surrounding Glen Murray's departure or the allegations made about his management.

Nine days after he left the Pembina Institute, Mr. Murray was in Winnipeg and stated that he was returning to settle in Manitoba and that he was not thinking of returning to politics.

The Pembina Institute declined to comment or address the allegations against Glen Murray or the circumstances leading to his departure.

For privacy and legal reasons, we are unable to comment publicly on personnel matters, chief executive Chris Severson-Baker said by email at the start. of the month of September.

The Pembina Institute has comprehensive policies and procedures governing the workplace, including policies and procedures governing respectful workplace behaviors and prudent use of resources and assets.

Ed Whittingham questions whether Mr. Murray is fit to become mayor of Winnipeg, given what he has witnessed in his workplace.

I think it behooves him to explain the work he has done and why he is now qualified for an even greater leadership role, when it was very clear, within a year, that he was completely unqualified for a more modest leadership role, he says.

Duncan Kenyon believes Glen Murray would be a toxic mayor.

The kind of workplace he would create would be really problematic, says he.

I really wouldn't, ever, want anyone to have to work in an office with him, the way he was at the Pembina Institute.

With information from Bartley Kives

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