Interior Regional Report
First Nations Health Authority - Board of Directors – Interior Representative
At Gathering Wisdom for a Shared Journey V, BC First Nations, by a historic level of consensus, adopted Resolution 2012-01. This Resolution provided further direction and guidance for the development of the new First Nations health governance structure, of which the First Nations Health Authority (FNHA) is a key component. Based on the direction provided in Resolution 2012-01, the FNHA will be transitioning from a 7-member to a 9-member Board of Directors in April 2014. The 9-member Board will collectively work for and make decisions for the benefit of all BC First Nations, regardless of residence; however, the Board will also be structured in a manner to make space for regional experience and perspective. The 9-member Board will include 5 Board members selected from nominations of First Nations in the 5 Regions (Fraser; Interior; North; Vancouver Coastal; and, Vancouver Island); and, 4 Board members chosen at large. The terms of the Board will be staggered, with the five regionally-representative positions in place as of April 1, 2014, and four current at-large Board members serving until March 31, 2015.
This recruitment notice supports the work of the Interior Region to nominate for the FNHA Board of Directors qualified individuals who also have experience with First Nations health and wellness matters in the Interior Region. The final decision on appointments to the FNHA Board of Directors is made by the Members of the FNHA.
Residents of British Columbia are eligible to apply for the FNHA Board of Directors, with the exception of:
Elected or hereditary First Nations leaders (Chief or Councillor).
Any individual eligible for membership in the First Nations Health Directors Association (a Health Director or senior health lead employed by an organization delivering health services within or on behalf of a First Nations community or communities).
Elected federal, provincial, or municipal officials.
Any individual working for an organization currently receiving funding from the FNHA.
Qualified First Nations individuals are strongly encouraged to apply.
August 15, 2013 at 4:30 pm
Full recruitment details in posting here: FNHA Board Recruitment - Interior Region posting PDF (530 kb)
The First Nations Health Council (FNHC) launched a “Health Partnership Workbook” in January 2011, and made the Workbook available online and as the focus of a series of First Nations regional caucus sessions across the province. The Health Partnership Workbook summarized the discussions about health governance held at more than 100 First Nations regional caucus meetings over the past three years and asked First Nations Chiefs, leaders and senior health professionals in BC to confirm this summary of feedback gathered and share new thoughts and perspectives. The results will inform further discussions, negotiations and relationship building towards the establishment of a new health governance arrangement of First Nations health services in BC.
The feedback provided by First Nations through the regional caucus sessions and the Health Partnership Workbook has been rolled into 5 summary documents – one for each region in BC. The initial regional reports were provided to each region for review, discussion and further amendment in April 2011 and this revised version of the initial draft report was provided again to each region in May 2011.
Interior Nations Sign Unity Declaration
On February 23, 2011 the seven members of the Interior Governance Caucus signed the unity declaration created exactly a year ago. The declaration confirms the commitment of Interior Nations to continue to work together in a Nation to Nation model in the implementation of the Tripartite First Nations Health Plan.
Download the Declaration
Interior Caucus Members
Gwen Phillips, Chief Ko’waintco Michel, Chief Bernie Elkins, Kukpi7 Wayne Christian, Kevin Skinner, Chief Art Adolph, and Mic Werstuik.
The Interior Governance Caucus has determined seven (7) members based on a nation-to-nation model; each member representing the distinct nations within the Interior Region. The Caucus has appointed Gwen Phillips, Chief Ko’waintco Michel, Chief Bernie Elkins to represent the interior region on the First Nations Health Council.
Chief Ko’waintco Michel
Ko’waintco (Shackelly) Michel is a Nla’kapamux (Thompson Tribe) woman born in Kamloops and raised in the Nooaitch community. She served 24 years in elected leadership positions and is presently is serving her 2nd term on the First Nations Health Council as one of three Interior Regional representatives. She holds the representative seat for the Nla’kapamux Nation.
Ko’waintco has vast experience in the political arena, including serving as BC Regional Chief from 1995 to 1998. She has also sat on various Boards and Committees, including the Southern panel that provided advice on fisheries to the Canadian commissioners. She is also a current board member for Scw’exmx Community Health Services, the Nicola Tribal Association, and Spayum Ltd Development.
A former AFN Women’s Council co-chair and the Women’s Council representative for BC, Ko’waintco is a Masters candidate in leadership from Royal Roads University. Married to Brian Michel and they have three grown children and one foster daughter. She maintains an active traditional and cultural lifestyle.
Chief Bernie Elkins
Mr. Elkins has served as the elected as off-reserve Chief of ?Esdilagh (Alexandria) of Tsilhqot’in Nation since 2008. He is supported by his partner Lucy Mack from the Nuxalk Nation and their families. Mr Elkins takes pride in learning from his three daughters and passing on the traditional teachings of trapping, tanning moose hide, dry fish and deer meat, and genealogy come from his dad Bernard Elkins (Joe Elkins & Matilda LongJohnny) and mother Theresa Stump (Clarence Twan & Nellie Stump). Mr. Elkins was a foster parent between 1989-1993.
Mr. Elkins was Prosperity Director for the Tsilhqot’in National Government (TNG). In this role, Bernie and his team were instrumental in successfully overturning the proposed Prosperity mine project based on the negative impacts of the project on environmental and Tsilhqot’in rights. In 2010 Bernie acted as the TNG Chair for the and now holds the title of Vice Chair with an economic development portfolio. In 2009, Mr. Elkins finalized the Tsilhqot’in Framework Agreement (Strategic Engagement) with BC for protecting Tsilhqot’in rights beyond title lands.
In 2008, Mr. Elkins was nominated as one of three Interior Chiefs to represent the 7 Interior region nations (54 Bands) under the BC First Nations Health Council, to negotiate a significant agreement with Health Canada and BC Health Authorities.
From Thompson River’s University Bernie holds a diploma in Human Service Corrections and an Associate Degree in Business Administration. In addition, he holds certificates from Justice Institute of British Columbia in leadership and negotiations.
Mr. Elkins is a past board member of Cariboo Memorial Hospital in Williams Lake.
Gwen is a citizen of the Ktunaxa Nations and has worked for her Nation for the past twenty-seven years, primarily within the Social Sector, serving as both Director of Education and Director of Health. Gwen has extensive experience in relationship building and has both developed and instructed First Nations Studies courses at the College of the Rockies.
She worked with the College of the Rockies to establish the Nation Rebuilding: Planning for Indigenous Governance program. It is a distance education program designed to help First Nations build capacity to undertake for themselves, the planning and development required to successfully transition to self-government.
In her current role as Director of Corporate Services and Governance Transition, Gwen is responsible for guiding the Ktunaxa Nation’s transition to self-governance, based on their traditional values and principles.
Gwen’s formal training is in Business Administration development and she operates her own small business, as a community planner, facilitator/trainer, artist and curriculum developer.