OHS Canada Magazine

Mike Parent takes reins at Workplace Safety North as interim CEO

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October 3, 2023
By OHS Canada

Health & Safety ontario Workplace Safety North WSN

Mike Parent, interim CEO at Workplace Safety North.

Mike Parent has been named interim president and CEO of Ontario’s Workplace Safety North (WSN).

Parent has been in the role of vice-president of health and safety services at WSN since 2015, and is a former paramedic, miner, mine rescue volunteer, and mining health and safety manager.

“The board was unanimous in their choice of Mike as interim CEO and is confident that he will lead the organization in building on its successes and executing a transformative strategic plan designed to bring every worker home safe and healthy,” said Lydia Renton, chair of WSN Board of Directors.

With more than eight years’ experience in Ontario’s prevention system, Parent has established a reputation as a strong and collaborative leader in health and safety promotion.

“I got into health and safety because I wanted to make a difference,” said Parent. “As interim President and CEO, this is an opportunity to make a difference at a provincial level.”


As a senior leader, Parent managed a team of mining health and safety consultants, trainers and specialists. His expert industry knowledge will help drive innovation in the provincial mine rescue program, health and safety products, training programs, and outreach strategies for the province’s mining and forest products operations, WSN said in a press release announcing the move.

Former head of WSN retired

Former WSN president and CEO Paul Andre has retired, it said. During his tenure, WSN was the “proud recipient of the Platinum Level Award of Excellence from Excellence Canada, a national authority on organizational excellence established by Industry Canada.”

Health and safety in Ontario has entered a new phase as the industry focuses on proactive research in reducing risks to protect workers, it said.

“WSN Health and Safety Specialists and Mine Rescue Officers help companies assess health and safety risks, prepare for and respond to emergencies, and meet or exceed their legislative requirements,” said Parent. “This very dedicated group works to ensure, as our vision states, that, at the end of each work day, every worker returns home safe and healthy.”

Search on for permanent CEO

The board of directors said it will initiate a search to identify a permanent CEO.

An independent not-for-profit, Workplace Safety North (WSN) is one of four sector-based health and safety associations in Ontario. Headquartered in northern Ontario, WSN administers the provincial mine rescue program and provides province-wide Ministry-approved workplace health and safety training and services for the mining and forest products industries.


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