Board of Directors

New Relationship Trust First Nations BC Hugh Braker

Hugh Braker, Chair

Hugh Braker is a member of the Tseshaht First Nation, Nuu-Chah-Nulth Tribal Council (NTC). A lawyer, Hugh provides adjudication services and consulting to a variety of Aboriginal clients. Hugh’s interest in the justice system started when he was a child – at a time when Aboriginal people didn’t have the right to vote. He excelled in law school, moving directly into the thick of it as Director of Self-Government with the Assembly of First Nations. He was the first male Nuu Chah Nulth lawyer in the country and the first BC First Nations lawyer to be made a Queen’s Counsel (Q.C.). Hugh worked as staff lawyer for the NTC for almost 10 years litigating and negotiating fishing and hunting rights and Aboriginal child welfare. He opened his own practice in 1989 and has volunteered as president of the Native Courtworker and Counselling Association of BC for 20 years.

New Relationship Trust First Nations BC Angela Wesley

Angela Wesley

Angela Wesley is a citizen of the Huu-ay-aht First Nations (Nuu-chah-nulth).  Since establishing Wes-Can Advisory Services in 1992 in partnership with her husband Gerald, she has worked extensively within her own community and with First Nations communities throughout British Columbia providing advisory and facilitation services in the areas of strategic planning, community development, communications, community engagement, and governance capacity building.  She continues to be an active participant in her Nation’s transition to self-government which officially took place in April 2011 when both the Maa-nulth Treaty and the Huu-ay-aht First Nations Constitution came into effect.  She continues to serve as the representative on the Maa-nulth First Nations Tripartite Treaty Implementation Committee on behalf of the 5 Maa-nulth First signatories to the treaty.

Angela acts as Speaker (Legislative Chairperson) for the Huu-ay-aht First Nations Legislature and Annual People’s Assemblies and has been the Board Chair/President for the Huu-ay-aht First Nations Group of Businesses since 2012.

She serves on the Board of Directors of the Toquaht First Nation Holdings Board, the Royal British Columbia Museum and the Land Title and Survey Authority of BC and previously served as Executive Member and Chair of the Nicola Valley Institute of Technology.  Angela resides in her husband Gerald`s traditional territory of Kitsumkalum in Terrace, BC and enjoys the company and teachings of her 10-year old grandson Drakon every weekend.

Liz Logan

Liz Logan is a Dene woman from the Fort Nelson First Nation.  Liz was educated in the health, business management and administration fields.  Having worked extensively in these areas for over 25 years, she returned to her community in 1998.  This varied background assists Liz in the many facets and challenges facing her people.

Liz is a descendent of Chief Jimmie Badine who signed the Fort Nelson First Nation adhesion to Treaty #8.  She has continued in her ancestor’s path in her beliefs that the promises made in that Treaty are to be honoured, for the good of her people today, and for those yet to be born.

She is the former Chief of the Fort Nelson First Nation and served for six terms.

She served as the Tribal Chief of Treaty 8 Tribal Association for nine years, with delegated authority from the Council of Treaty 8 Chiefs, on matters related to negotiations with the Province of BC, some major projects proposed through Treaty 8 Territory, and meetings with senior government officials and industry representatives. In her role as Tribal Chief, she served as the political spokesperson, negotiator, chair and advisor to the Council of Treaty 8 Chiefs.

Liz’s hard work on behalf of her people was recognized by being nominated and winning the Aboriginal Woman of the Year Aurora Award of Distinction at the 2006 Northern Women’s Symposium. Several years ago she was profiled on the Aboriginal People’s Network television show called Venturing Forth.  In December 2011, the Northern Rockies Aboriginal Women Society awarded Liz with the Most Dedicated Aboriginal Leader Award.

She was involved in many committees and served on many boards like the BCAFN Board of Directors as well as the Indian Resource Council/Indian Oil and Gas Canada.

In her spare time, Liz enjoys being with her family, reading, listening to music, and in the summer, gardening, fishing and exploring the country on her Harley Davidson motorcycle.

New Relationship Trust First Nations BC Byron Louis

Byron Louis

Mr. Louis has over 25 years of knowledge and experience, at various levels of the political spectrum. First, elected to Council in 1991, then designed as Chair of the Okanagan Nation Fisheries Commission in 1995 and as a title and rights advisor at the Tribal Council and Regional level, and political liaison designate with US based Tribal, Public and Private Utilities (Hydro-electric generation) and State and Federal Authorities. Over the course of his career he has served in various facets of political office involving Natural Resource Management, Economic Development, Public Works, Community planning, liaison and strategic development and negotiation with various levels of government and the private sector Mr. Louis continues to work extensively on First Nations social and economic issues and interests and currently serving his third term as Chief of the Okanagan Indian Band.

New Relationship Trust First Nations BC Miles G. Richardson

Miles Richardson

Mr. Miles G. Richardson is a citizen of the Haida Nation and Canada. He grew up among his people on Haida Gwaii, attended high school in Prince Rupert, BC, and in 1979 received a Bachelor of Arts in Economics from the University of Victoria. From 1984 to 1996, he served as President of the Council of Haida Nation.

Mr. Richardson was a member of the British Columbia Claims Task Force, which made recommendations to the Government of Canada, Government of British Columbia and First Nations in British Columbia on how the three parties could begin negotiations to build a new relationship and what negotiations should include.

From 1991 to 1993, Mr. Richardson was a member of the First Nations Summit Task Group, an executive body representing First Nations in British Columbia. In October 1995, Mr. Richardson was nominated by the Summit and appointed as a Commissioner to the BC Treaty Commission. He was elected to a second term in April 1997. In November 1998, he was chosen as Chief Commissioner by agreement of Canada, BC and the First Nations Summit for a three-year term and was reappointed in November 2001.

In 2007, Mr. Richardson was named an Officer of the Order of Canada. Currently, he operates his own business advisory service and is also the Co-Chair of the IOG Indigenous Advisory Circle.

Wade Grant

Wade Grant currently serves as the Intergovernmental Affairs Officer to the Musqueam First Nation, while also serving as a board member for the First Nations Health Council and the Covenant House.

Prior to working for his community, Wade spent 3 years with the BC provincial government as the special advisor on First Nations issues to premier, where he convened groups to talk with the province about unresolved issues with the BC First Nations.

Previously, Wade has served on the Vancouver Police Board; was an economic development officer; and band council member with the Musqueam Indian Band.

During the 2010 Winter Olympic and Paralympic Games, Wade was Assistant General Manager of the Four Host Nations Aboriginal Pavilion. He has acted as a policy analyst for the BC Assembly of First Nations and as executive assistant to the Solicitor General of British Columbia. He holds a BA in Political Science from UBC and attended UBC Law School.

In November 2015 and 2013, he was recognized by Vancouver Magazine when they included him on their “Power 50” list. In 2012, Wade received the Queen’s Diamond Jubilee medal for his service to his community. Wade continues to reside on the Musqueam Indian Reserve with his two children, Eli and Isla.


Walter Schneider, CEO

Walter is a Chartered Professional Accountant and is in the final stages of earning his MBA at Simon Fraser University Beedie School of Business and a diploma in Urban Land Economic from UBC Sauder School of Business – Real Estate Division.  Immediately prior to his current role as the Chief Executive Officer, Urban Native Youth Association, Vancouver he was the Executive Operating Officer for the Squamish Nation.  He also held senior executive positions with the First Nations Financial Management Board; the First Nations Finance Authority; and Lehman Brothers Japan Inc.

Jessie Williams, Director of Business Development and Communications

Jessie is a member of the Sḵwx̱wú7mesh Úxwumixw (Squamish Nation) and of mixed European descent. She takes great pride in being a mother of two remarkable adult children and a grandmother to her new grandson. Having obtained a Bachelor of Business Administration and a Master of Educational Administration and Leadership has inspired her meaningful career, which is focused on empowering Indigenous presence, voice, and capacity. Most recently, Jessie served as the Director of Indigenous Relations at Simon Fraser University.

Leaning on the wisdom gained from her lived experience, educational attainment, professional journey, and elder teachings, Jessie has developed a passion for nation-building. She joins NRT as the Director of Business Development and Communications and is committed to collaboration, inclusivity, strategic planning, and innovation.

Marie Alaimo, Director of Operations

Marie Alaimo graduated from the University of Victoria in 2012 with a Major in Psychology. She joined the NRT team in 2018 and is in charge of overseeing the Direct Support Initiative, Scholarship Initiative, Young Entrepreneurship Symposium, and NRTF Golf Tournament.

Before working at NRT, Marie worked for the BC Government, where she gained an array of skills working in various departments, including Corporate Planning, Communications, Research, and the Health and Finance Ministers’ Offices. 

She looks forward to utilizing her skills and expertise to help build a strong future for First Nation’s people in B.C.

New Relationship Trust First Nations BC Matt Cook-Contois

Matt Cook-Contois, NRTF Partnerships and Marketing Manager & NRT Program Specialist Senior Associate

Matt Cook-Contois is a member of the Misipawistik Cree Nation which is located in Northern Manitoba. Matt has a Bachelor of Commerce (Honours) degree with a double major in Entrepreneurship and Human Resource Management from the Asper School of Business.

Matt’s primary goal is to improve the lives and outcomes of Indigenous people everywhere to foster in an era of unprecedented health and happiness. He believes that education is an integral key to achieve this goal and dedicates his time to assisting others in reaching their dreams.

Matt will continue to utilize his education and focus to identify new opportunities for Indigenous students, thereby contributing to the continued growth of the New Relationship Trust Foundation.

New Relationship Trust First Nations BC Lana Plante

Lana Plante, Program Specialist Associate

Lana Plante is a proud Nisga’a citizen from Gitlaxt’aamiks and is from the Laxgibuu Tribe, Gitwilnaakil, and hails form the House of Duuk.  Her heritage is also of Cree, French and Irish.

Lana has a diploma from the Capilano College, Paralegal/Legal Assistant Program and has been with NRT since inception, serving as primary point of contact for and liaison between management, stakeholders, students, the general public and vendors. Lana took the role of Project Officer in 2008.

Lana manages the BC First Nations Elders grant, Youth grant, Youth Language grant, K-12 Education grant, and the New Relationship Trust Foundation Certificate, Diploma, Associates Degree and Trades Bursaries.

Lana loves working with all the First Nations/Organizations across BC and contributes her experience and proficiency by providing support and helping students on their education journey.

New Relationship Trust First Nations BC Kim Brazil

Kim Brazil, Director of Finance & Corporate Services, CPA, CGA

Kim is the Financial Officer of New Relationship Trust and is responsible for overseeing all financial related activities. She joined the NRT team in 2010.

Kim has over 25 years of experience in accounting and finance, and has held senior financial positions with not-for-profit and First Nations organizations. Her expertise lies in her ability to establish solid internal controls, and continually evaluate/modify the accounting systems to ensure efficiency and accountability.

Kim is a Chartered Professional Accountant (CPA), qualifying as a Certified General Accountant (CGA) in 1994.

Cole Sayers, Director of BC Indigenous Clean Energy Initiative (BCICEI)

Cole Sayers is from the Hupacasath First Nation, one of the Nuu-Chah-Nulth Nations on the West Coast of Vancouver Island. Cole studied Political Science and Indigenous Studies at the University of Victoria while working for, and with, Indigenous students in creating safe, supportive spaces and services that contributed to student success and well-being. In September 2017, he completed the 12 month Aboriginal Youth Internship Program (AYIP) before joining the NRT team as the BC Indigenous Clean Energy Initiatives (BCICEI) Coordinator. Cole is grateful to have the opportunity work with First Nations in advancing their clean energy projects.

Selina Beltran, BC Indigenous Clean Energy Initiative (BCICEI) Program Specialist Associate

Selina Beltran is from Tsleil-Waututh nation and has recently graduated from the University of Victoria with a major in Gender Studies. Selina works with Cole Sayers on the BC Indigenous Clean Energy Initiative (BCICEI). Selina is also on the board of directors for two small organizations, the Coastal Research, Education, and Advocacy Network (CREAN) and the Support Network for Indigenous Women and Women Of Colour (SNIWWOC). CREAN is a non-profit organization dedicated to community-based research, education, and advocacy. SNIWWOC is a non-profit organization that focuses on reproductive justice and the empowerment of women in Victoria and Vancouver.

Sarah Powell, BC Indigenous Clean Energy Initiative Analyst

Sarah is a member of the Taku River Tlingit First nation in Atlin, BC. She graduated from the University of Victoria in 2019 with a Bachelor of Science degree, with a major in Geography and a minor in Indigenous Studies. Sarah recently completed the 12-month BC Public Service Indigenous Youth Internship Program and joined the NRT team after her placement in the program. Sarah works with BCICEI providing administrative support, as well as working with the Education Initiatives. Previously, Sarah worked as a dispatcher for the BC Wildfire Service. She looks forward to utilizing her education and skills to provide support to First Nations in BC.

Jeffrey Hernandez, Corporate Services Support

Jeffrey is a member of the Tsleil-Waututh Nation (səl̓ilw̓ətaʔɬ) residing in North Vancouver, British Columbia. He has experience in many roles working with and for Indigenous communities in BC and is ecstatic to take part in the pivotal areas New Relationship Trust (NRT) supports.

In addition to general administrative tasks, Jeffrey provides active support across all initiatives to ensure smooth progress in the many projects running throughout NRT at any given time. As Jeffrey is a recent addition to the team, he is committed to upholding NRT’s core values of collaboration, inclusivity, strategic planning, and innovation through a uniquely Indigenous lens.

Previous Directors

A-in-chut (Shawn Atleo)

Michael Bonshor

Dawn Farrell

Terry Kuzma

Debra Hanuse

Donald Hayes

Nathan Matthew

Gloria Morgan (Yaw Yawt all Xa Xa7 t’e Boonllp)

Catherine Panter

Ken Rea

Chief Stewart Phillip

George Saddleman (XweeTa?)

Judith Sayers

Yvonne Smith

Leona Sparrow

Kathryn Teneese

Kory Wilson

David Jimmie


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