Why does Seabird Island Band need a Lands Department?

Seabird Island adopted its Land Code January 08, 2009 in accordance with The Framework Agreement on First Nation Land Management Framework Agreement is an initiative by these 14 First Nations to opt out of the land management sections of the Indian Act and take over responsibility for the management and control of their reserve lands and resources. The Framework Agreement sets out the principal components of this new land management process. The Framework Agreement provides 58 First Nations with the option to manage their reserve lands under their own Land Codes. Until each of these First Nation communities develops and approves a Land Code to take control of its reserve lands and resources, federal administration of their reserve lands continues under the Indian Act.

What does a typical work day look like for you?

Recently the Lands Department has been working closely with the Lands Advisory Committee, Band Membership, Lands Advisory Board and Chief and Council with regard to the Land Use Plan and Law Making Process for Seabird’s Development Law, Business Permit Law and Dog Licensing and Animal Management Law.

What is the most important task you perform?

Creating and implementing ways to improve the land with minimal environmental impacts.

What education do you have and how does it support your work?

I have my Business Management and E-Commerce, and am currently enrolled at UBC Sauder School of Business studying Rental Property Management.

What challenges do you face performing your duties?

Sometimes there are too many people with too many ideas and too many experts to come to an agreement and achieve a good result. The more conflict, the less improvement, the farther the team gets from completing and meeting goals.

What training have you taken that supports your work?

  • Certificate of Completions for Specific Claims Course Union of BC Indian Chiefs April – June, 2014
  • Certificate of Completion for Indigenous Google Mapping Workshop held at the University of Victoria August, 2014
  • Links to Learning Conference held in Vancouver December, 2014
  • Environmental Stewardship Seminar Cumulative Effects held in Vancouver February, 2015
  • First Nations Land Management Funding / Surpluses with Lands Advisory Board Finance Manager Sandra Gfellner
  • Certificate of Achievement – Indian Registration Administrator course held in Kamloops March, 2015
  • Land Use Plan Seminar held in Vancouver April, 2015
  • First Nations Land Management Environmental Workshop – Environmental Management Plan and Laws held in Victoria October, 2015
  • Lands Advisory Board AGM held in Sooke, November, 2015
  • First Nations Alliance 4 Lands Managers AGM and Workshops held in Kamloops November, 2015

What’s your favourite part about the team you work with?

Working with the Lands team has several advantages when trying to reach a specific goal. We have more ideas than one, and we have several viewpoints and confidence boosting. When one member may be weak another might be strong, and working together, they provide the perfect team.

What do you most enjoy about your role?

The passion I have for our land is the most enjoyable aspect of my job, along with the new challenges it brings forward on a daily basis and the ability to work with one of Seabird’s youth, Brandi McNeil. Knowing what I’ve accomplished is one of the reasons I really want to be in my position and that it is for the future of Seabird. Brandi is a pleasure to work with and I hope she decides to stay in the Lands field as a career, as she is becoming very familiar with Seabird Island’s Land processes.