Indigenous Opportunities Forum 2019 Presented by CN

Friday, June 14, 2019
7:30 AM
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Schedule:Registration & Buffet Breakfast: 7:30 - 8:00 a.m.
Program: 8:00 a.m. - 12:00 p.m.
Indigenous Opportunities Forum 2019

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People are the key to building strong and resilient communities.

The Greater Vancouver Board of Trade's 9th annual Indigenous Opportunities Forum will explore the important role that Indigenous leaders have played to create more prosperous communities by leveraging ownership, investing in people, and retaining their strong heritage and cultural practices.

This forum will bring together Indigenous leaders, industry leaders, and employers to discuss best practices and future investments in building strong First Nations communities.

Our partners at BCIT have released a report, An Indigenous Vision: A framework for action and accountability. Printed copies of the report will be available at the forum and you can find more at BCIT News.


Crystal Smith

Crystal Smith
Chief Councillor
Haisla Nation Council


Stephen Quinn

Stephen Quinn
Host of The Early Edition
CBC Vancouver

Terry Teegee

Terry Teegee
Regional Chief
BC Assembly of First Nations


Hayley Woodin

Hayley Woodin
Multimedia Reporter
Business in Vancouver

Session 1

Leveraging Ownership

Indigenous communities across Canada are increasingly exploring business opportunities and ownership positions in various industries. Increasingly, Indigenous communities are turning into major economic and regional players, with many communities deciding that ownership can provide the best path to environmental protections and economic benefits. The panel will highlight some positive examples of Indigenous ownership and explore barriers that continue to exist.

Niilo EdwardsShane GottfriedsonYuho OkadaTamara Napoleon

Niilo Edwards, Executive Director, First Nations Major Project Coalition
Shane Gottfriedson, Indigenous Leadership Team, Project Reconciliation
Yuho Okada, President, Barkley Project Group
Moderator:  Tamara Napoleon, Principal, Miller Titerle and Company

Session 2

Culture, Language, and Community

Successful economic development and partnerships provide lasting benefits and revenue streams to invest in community priorities. This panel will explore the on-the-ground positive impacts of increased economic self-sufficiency.

Myrah Baptiste David EddyMike WillieKory Wilson

Myrah Baptiste, Chief Operating Officer, Osoyoos Indian Band
David Eddy, Chief Executive Officer, Vancouver Native Housing Society
Mike Willie, Owner, Sea Wolf Adventures
Moderator: Kory Wilson, Executive Director, Indigenous Initiatives and Partnerships, BCIT


Session 3

Procurement and People: Investing in B.C. First Nations Communities

This panel will discuss investments in employment and education for the next generation and the procurement opportunities which make it possible.

Philip DucharmeMichelle MawhinneyGavin SearsHeather Lawrence

Philip Ducharme, Director, Innovation and Entrepreneurship, Canadian Council for Aboriginal Business
Michele Mawhinney, Vice President, People and Sustainability, Vancouver Airport Authority
Gavin Sears, Contracting and Procurement Manager, LNG Canada
Moderator: Heather Lawrence, Manager Indigenous Affairs, Teck Resources Ltd.

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