City of Whitehorse sacks two of its senior managers

The city of Whitehorse has fired two of its most senior civil servants. Robert Fendrick and Brian Crist were both fired on Wednesday, according to city manager Christine Smith. The pair was dismissed without cause.

The city of Whitehorse has fired two of its most senior civil servants.

Robert Fendrick and Brian Crist were both fired on Wednesday, according to city manager Christine Smith.

The pair was dismissed without cause.

Smith said she could not provide the reason because it’s a “personnel matter.”

“These are always extremely difficult decisions,” she wrote in an email.

“They are both very good people. I need to protect their privacy, this is an HR issue and therefore I cannot say any more.”

Smith said she shared her decision with city council behind closed doors. Not all councillors were present, she added.

Fendrick, the former director of corporate services, had worked with the city for 16 years.

Born in the Northwest Territories and raised in Whitehorse, Fendrick began his career with BC Hydro in 1982.

After several years he founded his own computer company, which employed 20 people.

He returned to Whitehorse in 1998 and was hired to work for the city the following year.

Brian Crist, the former director of infrastructure and operations, had worked with the city for 16 years.

He worked as a surveyor and technologist in British Columbia in the 1980s before moving to Inuvik, N.W.T. in 1988.

Crist was hired by the city of Whitehorse in 1998 as its manager of public works, a position he held until 2006.

That year, he became director of infrastructure and operations.

Crist became the interim city manager in April 2013 after Stan Westby went on medical leave.

The city eventually terminated Westby’s contract in September 2013 and Crist remained city manager until April 2014, when Smith took over the job.

Crist was praised for his work as city manager, receiving the Municipal Employee’s Award of Excellence from the Association of Yukon Communities.

He announced the city’s waste management plan in Aug. 2013, which outlines ways the city hopes to meet its goal of halving the amount of waste sent to the landfill by the end of this year.

The city won an award for its Solid Waste Action Plan from the Federation of Canadian Municipalities in November 2014.

Val Anderson, the city’s manager of financial services, is now acting director of corporate services. Operations Manager Dave Muir is acting director of corporate services.

Smith will undertake a competitive recruitment process in the coming months, she said.

Contact Myles Dolphin at

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