UPHOLDING VALUES AND SAFEGUARDING OUR LAND
We will uphold the Fort Chip Values of Respect, Integrity and Community. This includes advocating for the rights and health of the land and working hard to provide assurance for the future use of the land.
PROTECTING OUR COMMUNITY IN THE MIDST OF COVID-19
In response to COVID-19, Fort Chip’s community members and other key stakeholders require reliable and trustworthy leadership to guide understanding and decision making.
Fort Chip leadership will regularly provide reliable sources of information to help people navigate these confusing times while also sharing potential resources and helping members keep up to date.
Fort Chip’s board is dedicated to increase accountability, structure, and transparency. We take this as a high priority. We will critically develop and review board materials and welcome insights from our members.
STRENGTHENING OUR COMMUNITY
The Fort Chip Métis, like many Métis communities in Canada, are a proud and independent community who have managed to maintain their way of life and culture. We are committed to sharing stories, preserving knowledge, and transmitting our culture to future generations in effective ways. We are also committed to attracting investment. When it is safe to do so, we will look for new ways to attract tourists who want to share in the experience of our beautiful land.
Our youth are our most important resource. They are the leaders of the community. We need to reach out to them on their own terms to bring them in and share their own culture with them. We will aim to empower them, improve their skills and learning, and to help build their future through employment opportunities and action.
Kendrick has previously served two terms with the board, one as Vice President and one as a Director of the Board. Kendrick is also one of two elected councillors for Ward 2 covering Fort Fitzgerald, Fort McKay and Fort Chipewyan.
During his term as President, Kendrick is committed to completing the Association’s credible assertion, through the Alberta Government’s Métis credible assertion process, to ensure the rights of the Fort Chipewyan Métis people are recognized and protected. He is also committed to completing the Fort Chip Métis Elder care centre and cultural centre.
Kendrick was born in Big Point and lives in Fort Chipewyan. He believes in maintaining traditional Métis values, ceremonies and land-based ways of living.
Judy-Ann has lived most of her life in Fort Chipewyan, raising her five children, working in education and volunteering her time to run baseball and soccer programs for youth. She is a land-based learning educator, teaching trapping and moose hunting to high school students, and she believes in community-run education for Fort Chipewyan students.
Judy-Ann’s priorities during her term as Vice President include continuing to improve local education, supporting Fort Chipewyan’s youth with land-based learning and sports programs and improving community housing and healthcare.
Barb Hermansen was born in Fort Chipewyan and raised on the Athabasca River, which is where she settled to raise and homeschool her own children for many years, teaching them to survive in the bush while living on the trapline.
Today, she lives in Fort Chipewyan and is a proud Indigenous knowledge holder and land-user who enjoys passing on the old ways to children and youth. She is currently teaching her great-grandson Cree, the language she was raised to speak and the Seven Sacred Teachings: truth, respect, love, humility, courage, honesty and wisdom.
Barb’s priorities during her second term as a Director of the Board include advocating for education and trades for Métis youth
Marina Stewart was born in Big Point and moved to Fort Chipewyan when she was 19 years old. Marina is passionate about passing on bush skills, trapping, hunting and fishing and teaches her own grandchildren to scale fish, dry meat and call moose. She believes that land-based education is as important to Métis youth as classroom-based learning.
Marina also believes in keeping the Cree language alive as a way to connect children and youth to their culture and heritage.
Marina hopes to help her fellow community members in any way she can during her time as a Director of the Board.
Kurtis Girard was born in Fort McMurray and raised and schooled in Fort Chipewyan. He spent his early adulthood commercially fishing in Lake Athabasca and trapping in winters before moving into the oil industry, where he has worked for the past 20 years. In 2008, Kurtis earned a diploma in Resource and Environmental Law from the Saskatchewan Institute of Applied Science and Technology.
Kurtis hopes to use his knowledge and experience to support the Board in improving relations with the oil sands sector and advocating for stronger environmental policies to protect the land and waters of the Fort Chipewyan Métis.
Caroline Powder was born in Saskatchewan and moved to Fort Chipewyan as a young girl. Over the years, Caroline has given back to her community by working for Nunee Health Board and the Kahkiyow Keykanow Elders Care Centre. Outside work, she enjoys hunting, Ski-Dooing, camping and fishing.
Caroline’s priorities during her first full term as a Director of the Board include advocating for better healthcare for members by attracting healthcare staff, including midwives and nurses, to the community. She also wants to protect members’ rights and help create a safer, more harmonious Fort Chipewyan for her grandchildren to grow up in.
Georgina Cardinal was born and raised in Fort Chipewyan. She has worked for the Athabasca Delta Community School for 37 years and has worked in education for more than 40 years.
Georgina is a traditional hide tanner, sewer and beader and has previously taught Indigenous crafting including Mukluks, Moccasins, gloves and beaded jewellery.
She believes in protecting and passing on Métis culture, from crafts to land-based survival skills. She also believes in fairness in representing her community. This will be her second term as a Director of the Board.
The Swearing-in Ceremony, held on March 26, 2022 at the Charlie Voyageur Youth and Elders Lodge, welcomed our new Board of Directors and featured a motivational message from Judge Ivan Ladouceur. Read more about the event in the Swearing-in Ceremony Program.