Report Finds Former Keyano President Harassed, Bullied Employees & Mismanaged Public Funds

A new report is highlighting significant wrongdoings by Keyano’s former President and CEO Dr. Trent Keough.

The Alberta Public Interest Commissioner released their findings on Thursday after several school employees made complaints.

It suggests Dr. Keough grossly mismanaged employees through bullying, harassment, and intimidation.

The report gave examples which includes him allegedly shouting at an employee at a public event and openly dismissing an employee in a condescending manner during a meeting with over 200 participants.

It also notes Dr. Keough encouraged other employees to make ‘quips’ about a specific employee during meetings to toughen them up.

The Commissioner also highlighted other wrongdoings including grossly mismanaging public funds.

It states at the beginning of the COVID-19 pandemic Dr. Keough reportedly suspended rent payments for students living in the College’s residence and provided students with grocery store vouchers.

These decisions were allegedly made without consulting with the College’s senior leadership or the registrar. It claims there was no evident need to provide such supports to students and there was no consideration of other emergency funding.

Another example includes Dr. Keough reportedly attempting to establish various sports teams at the College without conducting proper consultation with the community or senior management, and without assessing their financial viability.

Back in 2019, Dr. Keough hired Tom Keca to be the school’s hockey coach, giving him a full salary despite Keyano not having a team and when they were facing cutbacks to other programs and departments.

Lastly, the report highlighted examples of gross mismanagement of the delivery of public service.

This included Dr. Keough allegedly releasing confidential information to staff which included sharing details of bargaining mandates and internal investigative findings related to an employee’s conduct.

It also claims he disrespected staff of Alberta’s Ministry of Advanced Education after he reportedly advised them to ‘get some class’ after not getting advance notice of a decision they made.

“On behalf of the Board of Governors of Keyano College, I would like to thank the Public Interest Commissioner for her thorough and thoughtful investigation,” said Shelley Powell, Chair of the Board of Governors for Keyano College.

“The Board is committed to ensuring the highest levels of professional conduct and public trust within Keyano College, while fostering an inclusive and harassment free work environment.”

Dr. Keough resigned from the school in May of 2020.

Mix News has reached out to him but has not heard back at this time.

Meanwhile, the report made three recommendations for the school moving forward.

This includes updating their Safe Disclosure Procedure as it apparently lacks information on the process for making a complaint against the President and CEO, making sure they maintain best practices related to hiring for executive positions, and that the Board conducts impartial evaluations on a regular and scheduled basis.

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