The Athabasca Health Authority has a new leader at the helm.

Allan Adam, who is originally from Uranium City, officially took over as the CEO of the health authority on Monday.

Adam said since starting in his new position he has been working to learn and is thankful to be in his position.

“Everything is different and new and I am really looking forward to doing the work here,” he said.

The new CEO said a major priority for him was the vaccine roll out. Speaking to MBC News on Tuesday, Adam explained he planned to get vaccinated himself on Wednesday. He added doing so would better allow him to perform his duties.

“I am going to be vaccinated as a precautionary measure and to make sure that I am safe for others, especially older people in our communities,” he said.

Adam stressed it is important for people living in Athabasca communities to know the vaccines will be good for them along with everyone who is around them.

Along with the vaccine roll out, Adam is also working to visit the various communities which the health authority serves. When he spoke to MBC Tuesday, Adam was traveling to Black Lake to meet with health care workers in that community. He said later in the week he planned to travel to Uranium City to meet with people there.

Adam, who is a member of Fond-du-Lac Denesuline First Nation, believes being from and growing up in area which the health authority serves will help him as he carries out the duties of his new position. He added that those who have led the health authority before him have done good work.

“The advantage I think for me is that I speak Dene fluently and I am able to understand what the culture of my people are and that I just will make it work for us now,” he said.

(Athabasca Health Authority Facebook: New Athabasca Health Authority CEO Allan Adam gets his COVID-19 vaccine)