SYDNEY — A Cape Breton special care home that had its licence revoked last year after a review found an autistic man was confined to a room for two weeks has appointed a new CEO.

Mildred Colbourne will take over the position at Braemore Home Corp. in Sydney later this month, replacing interim CEO Betty Mattson.

The Cape Breton District Health Authority took over operations at Braemore in October 2011 after the province’s Department of Community Services found that a resident of the home was locked inside a constantly lit room for 15 days in 2010.

A review released late last year outlined a number of management problems at Braemore, saying it was beset by a climate of mistrust and suspicion.

Colbourne said Friday that her extensive background in disability care will help propel the home forward in implementing the review’s nine recommendations.

"I am considered a leader and certainly strong leadership is required for the home right now," said Colbourne, a former director of the Services for Persons with Disabilities program in the Department of Community Services.

"It’s also important for someone coming into this type of role to gain an excellent understanding of the needs of the residents here and of the staff here."

Colbourne said officials have already been working with Braemore staff to develop a more supportive model of disability care and to develop short- and long-term goals.

"They are an extremely committed staff," she said in an interview. "They know the residents and they’ve worked with them for a number of years, so we want to build on that momentum."

The health authority will continue to act as the home’s board until the recommendations have been implemented, but Colbourne could not say when that would be.

The review was ordered after the province concluded the 20-year-old autistic man, who was allowed out occasionally for exercise and meals, sometimes urinated in the room when he couldn’t leave to use the bathroom.

The home’s former executive director, Debra MacPherson, later apologized.

The report by consulting firm Deloitte called on the government to develop standards for special care homes and urged Braemore to work with an organization that specializes in adult autism and residential services.

Braemore provides housing and rehabilitation services for about 130 youths and adults with disabilities.