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Chief Administrative Officer

Job Type: 
Executive Opportunities
Municipal District of Ranchland No. 66
Job Description : 


Mission:  To protect and enhance the unique ranching heritage and to promote activities that are sustainable and compatible with the environment.


The Council of the Municipal District of Ranchland No. 66 in the Rocky Mountain region of Southwestern Alberta invites applications from suitably qualified individuals for the full-time position of Chief Administrative Officer (CAO).  A key long-term senior employee of the M.D. has been appointed as Interim CAO to provide guidance and continuity until a permanent CAO is hired.  Currently the M.D. staff component consists of eight FTEs and four direct reports.  Council consists of three elected officials, two of whom have served since the early days of the M.D.’s creation in the mid-1990s. 

Applicant Qualifications Interested parties are expected to have at least the following attributes:

  • Formal postsecondary education in local government administration in Canada (Bachelor’s degree, -year diploma, executive certificate, CLGM program);
  • Five or more years of senior administrative experience in local government in Alberta, preferably in a rural municipality;
  • Well-developed executive competencies in management, leadership, critical thinking and project management;
  • Regular professional development, especially in areas of practice that are local government;
  • Working knowledge of agriculture from hands-on personal involvement and/or formal education that includes environmental studies.

Facts About the Municipal District of Ranchland No. 66

Framed by the famous Porcupine Hills (a legacy of the last ice age 10,000 years ago) and the Rocky Mountains of Alberta’s eastern slopes, the Municipal District of Ranchland is one of the most historic and picturesque areas in southern Alberta.  Encompassing nearly 2,500 km2, the Municipality consists of forest reserves, protected areas, creeks and streams and open rangeland.  Approximately 75 percent of the land base is Crown owned while privately owned land is held in large holdings.  The M.D. shares borders with the M.D. of Pincher Creek, the Municipality of Crowsnest Pass, M.D. of Willow Creek, Foothills County and Kananaskis Improvement District No. 5 (Kananaskis Country). 

The M.D. of Ranchland hosts a provincial park, a wildland park, an ecological reserve and three natural areas.  Southwestern Alberta has some of the finest ranching country in the world.  The stewardships the M.D. and its residents perform are dedicated to protecting and preserving Alberta native ecosystems and heritage ranching.  Much of the land in the M.D. is unbroken and not accessible by roads, which is desirable from the perspective of environmental conservation. 

The M.D. of Ranchland is unusual within the Alberta municipal sector.  Some of the notable differences are these:

  • It has the least population of any M.D. in the province - approximately 90 people populate the Municipal District and traditionally reside on secluded ranching operations rather than in urban areas;
  • It is the only M.D. in Alberta with no cities, towns or hamlets within the municipal boundaries, and residents travel outside the municipality for goods and services;
  • The M.D. has the only Alberta municipal headquarters not located in a population centre, so employees commute from adjacent municipal districts;
  • With three members, the M.D.’s’ Council is the smallest in the Province;
  • M.D. headquarters building is reminiscent of a mountain chalet.It is located at the entrance to Chain Lakes Provincial Park on Highway 22.The park lies within Canada’s last large expanse of mostly undisturbed montane landscape between the Rocky Mountains and the Porcupine Hills.

Potential applicants are invited to learn more about the M.D.’s values, philosophy and activities; and the M.D. as a desirable choice in which to work.  You are encouraged to explore our website at www.mdranchland.ca where you will also find a summary of the CAO position and further information about the M.D.

Other sources of information that are strategic to consult are the following:

George Cuff on why the business metaphor is not viable for local governments: https://www.municipalworld.com/feature-story/run-it-like-a-business/

‘The Last One Percent’, an article on the critical importance of keeping the M.D. and adjacent areas wild.


Closing Date: 
July 22, 2019
Application Return: 

The closing date for applications is July 22, 2019. Our expectations for applications are a covering letter and resume, transmitted electronically to admin@ranchland66.com or by Canada Post to M.D. of Ranchland No. 66, P.O. Box 1060, Nanton, AB, T0L 1R0.

The M.D. of Ranchland thanks all applicants in advance for their interest, however, only those being considered will be contacted.