Johnson pleased with new cabinet post
Trinity-Bay de Verde MHA Charlene Johnson says she’s excited about her new cabinet post. But admits to being sad ab o u t l e av i n g the Department of Environment and Conservation.
“It was a great opportunity in a department where I have a background in it, having my masters in environmental engineering. I was thoroughly enjoying it,” Johnson told The Compass shortly after her swearing in Jan. 13 as the new Minister of Child, Youth and Family Services.
“There’s a lot of good things happening in that department around climate change, drinking water and environmental assessments for all the projects. It’s a really happening department.”
Johnson was in environment and conservation for a little over three years. But she says it’s not possible to stay in a department forever, and knew the time would come eventually. And besides, she’s extremely exicted about her new duties.
“The best resource we have in our province is our children, and anything I can do to shape policy and impact and improve the well-being of children ... I really look forward to that.”
Johnson has a 20-month-old daughter, Jorja, and has a renewed understanding of how precious children are.
She was informed of the shuffle on Wednesday evening, and looks forward to getting up to speed on the issues in her new department.
Johnson’s move was one of several announced by Premier Kathy Dunderdale on Thursday morning.
Derrick Dalley was welcomed into the cabinet, taking over as the new Minister of Business; Joan Burke takes over the Department of Education; Ross Wiseman will take over from Johnson as Minister of the Department of Environment and Conservation; and Darin King will lead Human Resources, Labour and Employment, as well as the Minister Responsible for the Status of Persons with Disabilities, Minister Responsible for the Labour Relations Agency, Minister Responsible for Youth Engagement, and Minister Responsible for Newfoundland Labrador Housing Corporation.
Carbonear-Harbour Grace MHA Jerome Kennedy remains the Minister of Health and Community Services.