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The Business of First Nations – Chief Commissioner to Open Summit’s Second Day
Sophie Pierre, Chief Commissioner of the BC Treaty Commission, will give one of four key addresses at the October 29/30 ‘State of the Island’ Economic Summit in Nanaimo. 

“As Premier Sponsor of the 8th annual Economic Summit, we are excited to have Ms Pierre as a key presenter. With the province of British Columbia committed to negotiate with First Nations to enable key infrastructure projects to go forward, especially in the energy sector, the Commissioner’s office will be playing a pinnacle role. The Chief Commissioner’s passion and leadership in finding solutions to difficult problems will be invaluable as we go forward. I am looking forward to hearing Sophie’s presentation–an opportunity not to be missed. Come join me at this year’s Vancouver Island Economic Summit.”  –Bernie Dumas, president & CEO, Nanaimo Port Authority

Ms. Pierre was appointed Chief Commissioner in April 2009 by agreement of the governments of Canada and British Columbia and the First Nations Summit. Pierre served the St. Mary’s Indian Band for 30 years, 26 as elected Chief, and was the administrator of the Ktunaxa/Kinbasket Tribal Council for 25 years. She also served as tribal chair of the Ktunaxa National Council, chairperson of the First Nations Finance Authority, President of St. Eugene Mission Holdings Ltd. and co-chair of the International Advisory Committee to the Indigenous Nations Institute for Leadership, Management, and Policy for the University of Arizona. Pierre was involved in the work of the British Columbia Claims Task-force and served as a co-chair of the First Nations Summit. She has also served on several boards and committees including, the Environmental and Aboriginal Relations Committee of the BC Hydro and Power Authority and the First Nations Congress. Pierre was recognized with the Order of British Columbia in 2002 and the National Aboriginal Achievement Award in the business category in 2003. During her tenure as Chief Commissioner, Sophie Pierre has been awarded two honorary Doctorates of law–in 2010 from the University of Canada West and in 2012 from the University of British Columbia.

“When a First Nation benefits from economic development, the whole region benefits. This is not necessarily true the other way around. So, it is in our collective interest to ensure economic benefits flow to our whole region, and First Nations with a fairly negotiated and fairly implemented treaty are in the best position to generate this growth.” –Chief Commissioner Sophie Pierre

“Sophie brings a wealth of experience from years of front line work with First Nations business and economic development. With increasing numbers of treaty settlements for First Nations on Vancouver Island meaning more First Nation capacity for business activity, we are all looking forward to learning from the Chief Commissioners seasoned perspective.” –Dan Smith, VIEA Chair

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