Four months into his new job as Estevan's economic development coordinator, Dwight 'Fitz' Bramble is already hard at work.
"I've been in the position for four months now and much of my activity has been centred around foundational work, doing research, getting all the ducks in a row, particularly the economic development board and by extension, city council. In addition to economic development activities for the City, I think one of the priorities right now is to try and get the economy up and running. And one best ways to do that is to attract businesses into the City and to retain and expand the ones which are already here."
"A lot of my activities have been interacting with local businesses, making connections and networking with various agencies and government ministries and departments, other private sector entities who can contribute towards the economic development of Estevan. More specifically, attract investment to the City."
"I've been very busy the first four months, even though it may not appear so because a lot of my work is doing research, reading up on relevant documents, seeing what's been there before, what's not been done, what's been done, what needs to be done. I have a very good, very supportive economic development board and I look forward to working with them."
Before taking the position with Estevan, Bramble has already created quite a resume for himself.
"I'm originally from the Caribbean, from a little island called Saint Vincent and the Grenadines. I obtained my Masters degree from Old Dominion University in Virginia, USA in economics. I went there on a soccer scholarship."
"Since then I've been an economist with the government back in my country. I've been my country's deputy ambassador in Washington. I've worked for the organization of American States and more recently I've lectured economics at the University of Regina before coming here."
"When I saw the advert, I thought this is a role that I am perfectly prepared for and would be a good fit. And in addition to that, Estevan being a small city, reminded me of my own country. It's a very small country. And I felt that the impact that I've made back home, this is an opportunity for me to make a similar impact. So I applied for the position and I was happy that I was hired."
He knows he has his work cut out for him.
"One of the issues in the past was not diversifying enough. Estevan is very heavily resource based which I think creates the foundation for great economic diversification. You can do a lot of things in agriculture, energy, and mining."
"Incidentally, the economic development board has identified five priority sectors that they would like to focus on in terms of investment attraction. Those areas are agri-food, greenhouse technology, manufacturing, geothermal and other sources of renewable energy, and alternative uses for oil and coal."
"It's a big portfolio but I think it's a step in the right direction because we cannot afford to, as the proverbial saying goes, put all of our eggs in one basket. I think we've experienced that before. I'm very optimistic and confident that Estevan can move in the right direction."
And Bramble is eager to get on the right track.
"Economic development is basically life, it encapsulates pretty much everything as long as there's a community, there's always going to be economic development which is just the development and improvement of people's lives."