Verna J. Kirkness, Honourary Chair – Member of the Fisher River Cree Nation
A lifelong advocate of Indigenous education, Verna Kirkness created new learning opportunities for Canada’s Indigenous people through her work as a teacher, counselor, consultant and professor. As the first education director for what are now the Assembly of Manitoba Chiefs and the Assembly of First Nations, she played a pivotal role in the development of the MIBs position paper, Wahbung: Our Tomorrows and the 1972 landmark policy of Indian Control of Indian Education. As a professor at the University of British Columbia, she worked to extend new programs, support services and cultural enrichment to Indigenous students. Verna has written and edited eight books and is published extensively in academic journals. She has received numerous awards, including the Order of Canada in 1998.
Mr. Brach is a resident of Powell River, BC where he has been an educator and school counsellor for School District 47 for over 30 years. He graduated from UBC with a M.Ed. in Counselling Psychology in 1990. Gerry leads the development and implementation of educational programs for the Sliammon First Nation where he is Head Teacher of Ahms Tah Ow School. He will assist in the identification of new educational partners as the Verna J. Kirkness Science and Engineering Education Program goes national in 2015.
Dr Stelómethet Ethel B Gardner is Stó:lō, and a member of the Skwah First Nation in B.C., with a PhD from Simon Fraser University, an Ed.M. from Harvard, a M.Ed from the University of British Columbia (UBC)’s Tsk’‘kel Program, and a B.Ed. from UBC’s Native Indian Teacher Education Program (NITEP). Her career in the field of Education spans over 30 years, and includes a passion for Indigenous language revitalization. Dr Gardner has led the design and development of unique Indigenous teacher education programs at Simon Fraser (Stó:lō DSTC) and Lakehead Universities (Honours B.Ed (Indigenous ) and at the University of Alberta, Dr Gardner assumed a leading role in Indigenous Language Education (ILE).
Patrick Lauzon, Vice-President
Mr. Lauzon is a resident of White Rock, British Columbia. He graduated with a Bachelor of Science Degree from UBC in 1978 and did advanced studies at Simon Fraser University. From 1981 to 2010 he held a range of positions in Western Canada. In 2001 he was appointed Manager for Corporate Affairs and Policy for Merck Frosst Canada in BC with responsibility for liaison with the academic health research community, the business and bio-technology sector, patient and disease advocacy groups and the BC government.
Tyson MacGillivray, President
Mr. MacGillivray is a resident of Winnipeg, Manitoba. He received his BSc. from St. Francis Xavier University in 1996. Tyson is the Assistant Superintendent for the Frontier School Division. Prior to this he was a teacher, vice-principal and a principal in the Shamattawa Education Authority. He chairs the School Advisory Committee for the Foundation and was also instrumental in recruitment of Program participants from Winnipeg high schools.
Ulandi Teubes is an Associate and the BC Region Operations Manager at Golder Associates Ltd., a global employee-owned engineering and environmental consulting services company with approximately 100 offices worldwide. Ulandi works in Golder’s Vancouver office as a part of a small senior leadership team that collaborates with the Principals and Associates of the region to develop and implement strategy, and manage the operations. Ulandi has been active in supervisory and management positions for 30 years and this is mostly attributable to her sincere interest in identifying and providing opportunities for people, mentorship to support their career growth and confidence development.
Mr. Williams is an alumni of the U of M Faculty of Science where he obtained a Bachelor of Science in Actuarial Mathematics. He is president of PBI Actuarial Consultants, Ltd. in Vancouver who provide consulting advice to organizations in the private sector and public sector across Canada. His clients include BC First Nations, whom he advices regarding management of their land claims settlement funds, and the University of British Columbia pension fund..
Ron Woznow, Chair
Dr. Ron Woznow is a resident of Powell River, British Columbia. He co-founded the Verna J. Kirkness Education Foundation in 2008 along with Susan O’Brien. He is currently an Adjunct Professor in the College of Management and Economics at the University of Guelph. He has served in executive positions in both the for-profit and non-profit sectors. Ron Woznow has 30 years of board experience with Canadian charitable organizations including Science World BC, the BC Children’s and Family Research Institute and the North South Institute.
Dr. Allan Bonner is a resident of Toronto, Ontario. He is an author, journalist and founder of Allan Bonner and Associates a media relation’s consultancy. Allan Bonner has coached approximately 30,000 people to deal with some of the most controversial and public issues of our time.
Dr. Barry Jones is a resident of Fredricton, New Brunswick. He has over 30-years’ experience working with government, industry and as a consultant in both fisheries’ research and management positions. Barry Jones has served on the boards of community organizations including the Canadian Red Cross Society/Fredricton Branch and the York Credit Union.
Ms. O’Brien is a resident of Powell River, British Columbia. She co-founded the Verna J. Kirkness Education Foundation in 2008 along with Ron Woznow. From 1979 until 2001 she held the position of Administrative Analyst in the School of Medicine at the University of California, San Diego Center for Molecular Genetics. Additionally, from 1992 to 1996 she was the operations manager for Myelos Neurosciences. She is also co-founder of the Verna J. Kirkness Science and Engineering Education Program.
Emőke J.E. Szathmáry
Dr. Szathmáry is a resident of Winnipeg, Manitoba. She was President and Vice-Chancellor of the University of Manitoba between 1996 and 2008. As president emeritus and professor she is continuing her academic appointments in the Department of Anthropology as well as in the Department of Biochemistry and Medical Genetics. Earlier she served as Provost and Vice-President (Academic) at McMaster University, Dean of Social Science at the University of Western Ontario, and Chairman of the department of Anthropology at McMaster.
Diana Palmerin Velasco
Dr. Diana Palmerin Velasco is a resident of Guelph, Ontario where she is the Cultural Diversity Specialist at the Cambridge, Kitchener and Waterloo YMCA. She graduated with an MSc. in Social Psychology from the London School of Economics and a Ph.D. in Sociology from the Latin American Faculty of Social Sciences (FLACSO). Her research work focused on the impact of immigration on women and family. She will lead the development of a survey to measure the impact of the Kirkness Program on the participants’ career choices and their roles as mentors within their communities.
Dr. Mark Whitmore was Associate Dean of Science at Memorial University of Newfoundland for three years, and Dean of Science at the University of Manitoba for a 10-year term, where he continues as Professor of Physics. He has served on several boards of directors, including the University of Manitoba and a number of not-for-profit research organizations. He has a particular interest in supporting the success of all students, and educating all citizens in the value and importance of science to society and to them personally.