The panel will focus on discussions around the implications of the legalization of cannabis. It will showcase successful partnerships between First Nations and the industry and will look at existing challenges and opportunities.
- Delphine Metallic, Listuguj First Nation
- Chief Christian Sinclair, Opaskwayak Cree Nation
- Isadore Day, Bimaadzwin
Listuguj First Nation
A Mi’gmaq woman from Listuguj Quebec, I have been a lifelong resident of this vibrant and culturally rich community. I raised my three children in Listuguj, leaving to pursue a college education in Montreal, and then again later to attain a business degree from the University of New Brunswick. Currently employed with the Listuguj Mi’gmaq Government for over 20 years, in various positions such as Economic Development (current role), Commercial Fisheries and Social Services. The wide experience gained through these positions has provided me with insight into community values and vision for the future and ensuring those things important to Listugujewaq are intertwined within the community economic development strategy as well as helping to formulate proposals and strategic directions for the betterment of the community.
Onekanew Christian Sinclair
Opaskwayak Cree Nation
Christian Sinclair is a proud member of the Opaskwayak Cree Nation (OCN). In 1988, Christian graduated from Margaret Barbour Collegiate Institute (MBCI) and then he went on to serve in the Canadian military until 1995, participating in tours of duty, in Cyprus (1990 Recon) and in Somalia (1992-93 Special Forces). In 1999, Christian co-founded the Manitoba Indigenous Summer Games (MISG), held on the traditional territory of Opaskwayak Cree Nation (OCN). MISG showcased the athletes, coaches and officials participating in multi-sport competition. In 2002, Christian was hired as General Manager of the North American Indigenous Games (NAIG) held in Winnipeg, Manitoba. The event was the most successful NAIG ever hosted and ended with a surplus of over $1.3 million. Today, Manitoba’s Aboriginal youth can access the scholarship program for sport development - the legacy of 2002 NAIG. In 2003, Christian began working in the corporate sector with aboriginal groups across Canada, focusing on corporate development and positioning for major natural resource projects in the areas of hydro, mining and oil and gas. In 2003, Christian was named as one of Canada's Top 40 under 40, honouring nationally and internationally prominent CEOs, CFOs, executives, and entrepreneurs. Christian completed the Masters in Project Management from University of Winnipeg, as well as Negotiations and Leadership from Harvard Law School. Christian also incorporates traditional knowledge and teachings from the people he has worked with and he acknowledges the importance of balancing these practices in his work. In 2013, Christian made a career change to work as an independent business advisor. With a wealth of organizational knowledge, experience earned on the battlefield and leadership proven in the corporate boardroom and in First Nation Council Chambers, Christian Sinclair is a highly sought-after negotiator and project manager for both Indigenous communities and mainstream corporations seeking to engage in major resource development. Christian is able to effectively bridge the needs and goals of industry and traditional land rights holders into mutually beneficial win-win opportunities for sustainable prosperity and lasting business partnerships for all involved and for future generations. In September 2016, Christian Sinclair was elected as Onekanew (Chief) for the Opaskwayak Cree Nation. Onekanew Christian Sinclair, along with the Onuschekawak (Council) and administration of Opaskwayak Cree Nation, are on the path to adopting and implementing the most advanced finance and governance standards - goal to become FMB certified by 2019. By sharing business models of success and incorporating an approach of calculated risk with high return on investment, Onekanew Sinclair is leading Opaskwayak Cree Nation into a new path to prosperity. In September 2019, Onekanew Sinclair has been re-elected as Chief of Opaskwayak for the second term.
Isadore Day, Wiindawtegowinini, is an Anishinabe from Serpent River First Nation. A former Regional Chief of Ontario, Lake Huron Region Grand Chief, and Vice Chair of the North Shore Tribal Council, he has served 15 years as an elected leader for First Nations and has handled various high-level policy files. Isadore is the founder and CEO of Bimaadzwin, an organization dedicated to advancing Nationhood at the grassroots and government levels. First Nations must assert sovereignty and land rights to create prosperity for their peoples. Isadore has been involved in various boards and committees; at both regional and national levels over the past two decades while remaining a strong grassroots visionary. With a background in Social Sciences, Business, Public Administration and Governance – he is a firm believer that education is culturally rooted and bridged into mainstream disciplines is essential to success. His most personably noted accomplishment was repatriating First Nation Children back to his First Nation from mainstream foster care systems. Isadore has been an energy policy leader, community developer, and a tireless advocate for First Nation treaty rights. At the national level, he was the chair of the Assembly of First Nations’ Chiefs Committee on Health, and co-chair of the AFN Task Force on Cannabis. Isadore continues to promote First Nation health and wealth outcomes as indicators of real Reconciliation in action.