25 Jan 2022 6:00 AM | Anonymous

Cochrane, Alberta, January 25, 2022 — The Verna J. Kirkness Education Foundation is pleased to announce Amber Boyd as the new Executive Director for the foundation.

Amber holds a Bachelor of Science Degree in Psychology, a Human Resource Management Certificate and a Creative Writing Certificate from the University of Calgary. She is a Registered Professional Recruiter, and for the past three years, has been responsible for finding Indigenous talent for Indigenous-led organizations across Canada.

She brings a wealth of experience and knowledge to the Verna J. Kirkness Foundation, having worked in finance, human resources, marketing, event planning, business development, and fundraising. Her previous employers include Fidelity Investments, RBC Dominion Securities, and Spirit Omega. Amber has been a corporate trainer for over 18 years and has previously worked as the Executive Director of Ups and Downs — the Calgary Down Syndrome Association. She is a proud citizen of the Métis Nation of Alberta, a published author, and is passionate about working with Indigenous Peoples in Canada.

The VJKF board of directors is confident Amber will lead their staff to accomplish its vision of seeing more Indigenous students graduating from science, engineering, and medicine at post-secondary institutions across Canada.

About the Verna J. Kirkness Education Foundation

The foundation was established in 2008 with the goal of increasing the number of Indigenous (First Nations, Métis, and Inuit) post-secondary students graduating in science, engineering, and medicine.

To accomplish this goal, Grade 11 Indigenous students are given the opportunity to learn and conduct research at one of the program’s 12 participating universities across Canada for a week in May. Students live in residence, meet with Elders at Indigenous student centres, and do independent research with faculty mentors, graduate students, and their peers.

The foundation’s namesake, Dr. Verna J. Kirkness, has been a leader in the field of Indigenous education since the 1950s. To date, over 500 Indigenous students have completed the Verna J. Kirkness Science and Engineering Education Program. This year, the foundation anticipates accepting 150 students to the program.


Tony C.L. Williams,
Chair of the Board of Directors: Website:

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