Board of Trustees

Chair John Beaucage (Ontario)

Chair John Beaucage (Ontario)

In October 2004, Grand Council Chief John Beaucage was elected to serve the 42-member First Nations of the Anishinabek Nation. He served as the elected Chief of Wasauksing First Nation for eight years, and as the Lake Huron regional member of the Union of Ontario Indians’ board of directors. Grand Council Chief Beaucage spent more than 15 years with Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation and worked out of Ottawa, Toronto, Regina and Saint John, New Brunswick. He currently sits on the Chiefs’ committees providing advice and direction to the Anishinabek Nation self-government negotiations with Canada. He co-chairs the National Chiefs’ committee on Housing. Grand Council Chief Beaucage currently holds the Ontario region portfolio in Housing and Infrastructure and serves as Chair of the Ontario First Nation Steering Committee on Housing.

Grand Council Chief Beaucage is a graduate of the University of Western Ontario with degrees in English and Economics, and he completed post-graduate work in First Nation planning from the University of British Columbia.

Vice-Chair Ruth Williams (British Columbia)

Vice-Chair Ruth Williams (British Columbia)

Ms. Williams is a member of the Shuswap First Nation and has spent over 20 years working in the area of Aboriginal/First Nations housing. She is currently Chief Executive Officer of All Nations Trust Company and has held this position for 11 years. She currently serves on seven different boards of organizations that deal with Aboriginal issues and is a partner in R & J Property management firm.

Maurice Biron (Ontario)

Maurice A. Biron (Ontario)

Maurice, a member of the Garden River First Nation, has extensive finance and investment experience having worked 9 years on programs/funds designed for sustainable finance to SMEs (small and medium-sized businesses) with the International Finance Corporation (member of the WorldBank). He has also worked in SME finance with the Federal Business Development Bank (now Business Development Bank of Canada), and the Toronto Dominion Bank which also included time spent in international corporate auditing. This was followed by career experiences in National Aboriginal business advocacy, and First Nations' economic and business development that included 7 years with the Mississaugas of the New Credit First Nation. Maurice is currently President of Nativest Inc., a Toronto business consulting company, and is the Vice Chairperson and a founding member (1990) of Two Rivers Community Development Centre, an Aboriginal Capital Corporation serving Six Nations and Mississaugas of the New Credit First Nation micro and SMEs. He has also served as a trustee on a New Credit $14 million trust. Maurice holds a B.A., B.Comm. (hon), is an A.M.P. and C.G.A. (1985).

Eric J. Menicoche (Northwest Territories)

Eric J. Menicoche (Northwest Territories)

Mr. Menicoche is Dene from the Dehcho First Nation and a member of the Liidlii Kue First Nation in the Northwest Territories. He is President and Chief Executive Officer of Xah Ndah Resources Limited. Mr. Menicoche has experience working with the Government of the Northwest Territories as Regional Community Justice Coordinator — Dehcho; as Wellness Coordinator for Pedhzeh Kue First Nation; and as Economic Development Coordinator for Liidlii Kue First Nation. Mr. Menicoche is also a member of the Mackenzie Valley Land and Water Board.

Jim Prodger (Nova Scotia)

Jim Prodger (Nova Scotia)

Mr. Prodger has worked on reserve with First Nation governments as a financial advisor and more recently as Finance Manager for the Millbrook First Nation in Truro, Nova Scotia. He is currently serving a two-year term as Director, First Nations Financial Management Board (appointed May 2007). Mr. Prodger is a Certified Aboriginal Financial Manager.

Gail Shawbonquit (Ontario)

Gail Shawbonquit (Ontario)

Ms. Shawbonquit is a member of Whitefish Lake First Nation, near Sudbury, Ontario. She is retired from Indian and Northern Affairs Canada, where she held various positions, including Manager of Capital Management, and District Director for the Sudbury office. Following her service with the federal government, she was elected Chief of Whitefish Lake, where she served two terms. She continues to serve on various boards both on and off reserve. Ms. Shawbonquit holds a Bachelor of Arts in Native Studies and Political Science.