Director, Indigenous and Northern Affairs Canada
INAC is one of 34 federal government departments responsible for meeting the Government of Canada’s obligations and commitments to First Nations, Inuit and Métis, and for fulfilling the federal government’s constitutional responsibilities in the North. INAC’s responsibilities are largely determined by numerous statutes, negotiated agreements and relevant legal decisions. Most of INAC’s programs and spending are delivered through partnerships with Indigenous communities and federal-provincial or federal-territorial agreements. INAC also works with urban Indigenous peoples, Métis and Non-Status Indians (many of whom live in rural areas).
Brad Cole and Nathan Towsley
Blue Heron Environmental, Zhashagi Division
Blue Heron is an environmental consulting firm based in Timmins, Ontario with satellite offices in Ottawa, Thunder Bay, Sudbury, and the Northwest Territories. The company was established with the express interest of providing practical and cost effective assistance to resource based companies for all aspects of environmental, health and safety risk management.
Blue Heron’s staff have years of experience working in the environmental, health and safety fields, primarily in the resource industry. The company offers a wide array of specialized expertise to support organizations’ environmental, health and safety needs.
Zhashagi, the Ojibway word for “Blue Heron”, is a wing of Blue Heron Environmental that focuses specifically on providing assistance to First Nation communities with respect to:
- Environmental training and mentorship for individuals and/or committees;
- Reviews of Environmental Assessments, permit applications, and environmental management plans for resource based development projects;
- On-site support for environmental monitoring;
- Helping to bridge the gap between Traditional Ecological Knowledge (TEK) and western science.
Native Women’s Association of Canada (NWAC)
The Native Women’s Association of Canada (NWAC) is founded on the collective goal to enhance, promote, and foster the social, economic, cultural and political well-being of First Nations and Métis women within First Nation, Métis and Canadian societies. NWAC is an aggregate of thirteen Native women’s organizations from across Canada and was incorporated as a non-profit organization in 1974. Much like a “Grandmother’s Lodge”, we as aunties, mothers, sisters, brothers and relatives collectively recognize, respect, promote, defend and enhance our Native ancestral laws, spiritual beliefs, language and traditions given to us by the Creator.
Dr. Yogendra Chaudhry, CRSP, EP
ECO Canada is a not-for-profit organization dedicated to supporting environmental professionals and employers from coast to coast. ECO offers training, research, academic accreditation and career services. Since 2006, ECO Canada’s indigenous training programs (BEAHR program) have helped Indigenous communities develop technical environmental skills and foster rewarding careers. In an effort to increase awareness about environmental careers and build capacity within Indigenous communities, ECO Canada maintains and administers custom training programs designed to provide skills to those who want to work or pursue further education in the environmental field. We have had over 3000+ training graduates, over 200 BEAHR program deliveries across Canada, and have reached a 70% employment rate for program graduates.