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As Canada forges its path to economic recovery, the time is now to engage in meaningful dialogue on the best direction forward.
This includes ensuring Indigenous communities participate in the natural resource economy. The energy industry is already one of the largest employers of Indigenous peoples in Canada and a significant supporter of Indigenous-owned businesses. Yet there is opportunity to expand Indigenous participation in this sector.
Join our esteemed panel to discuss how mutually beneficial resource development can offer such an opportunity to help rebuild the Canadian economy and contribute to the economic and social sustainability of Indigenous communities.
Global Director, Community Engagement
Growing up in small town Northern Ontario, Chelsie connects her humble roots to all aspects of her work by listening intently and integrating stakeholder feedback into major project design. Her empathetic and proactive approach ensures that local cultural traditions are respected and social risks are managed. Chelsie has more than 13 years of experience in community engagement, issues management and communications that spans across several sectors including nuclear, waterpower, chemicals, oil, natural gas, mining and infrastructure. She holds a Bachelor of Arts degree in economics, a Master of Arts in Conflict Analysis and Management and she’s in the midst of taking on her next challenge – her Master of Laws at the University of Toronto. She was recognized by Oilweek magazine as a Rising Star in the oil and natural gas industry for outstanding leadership in communications and was named a United Nations (UN) Young Innovator by the UN Global Compact in 2020. Chelsie prides herself on personal connections that she makes along her journey and never forgets to collect local art that reminds her of places she’s visited – including an Inuvialuit jacket that she hangs in her home office from her work in the Northwest Territories.
President & CEO
As the President & Chief Executive Officer of Cenovus Energy, Alex is responsible for establishing the strategic direction for the company and delivering strong financial and operational performance. Alex took on the company’s leadership role in November of 2017 and is also a Director of Cenovus.
Prior to Cenovus, Alex spent 27 years with TC Energy and its affiliates in a broad range of leadership roles, including Chief Operating Officer, where he was responsible for the company’s commercial activity and overseeing major energy infrastructure projects and operations. He also has experience in corporate strategy, business development, mergers, acquisitions and divestitures, as well as stakeholder relations.
Alex earned both a Bachelor of Law and Bachelor of Arts degree from the University of Alberta. He is active in the community, having sat on the boards of several local charities, including many years as a dedicated volunteer for the United Way. Alex served on the board of Trican Well Service Ltd., was Board Chair for the Canadian Energy Pipeline Association and currently serves on the boards of Canadian Utilities Limited and the Business Council of Canada. He is also Chairman of the Board of Governors at the Canadian Association of Petroleum Producers (CAPP), Board Chair at Mount Royal University and is a member of the Business Council of Alberta.
Alberta Indigenous Opportunities Corporation
Alicia is a proud Indigenous professional who earned a B.Sc., with Distinction from the University of Lethbridge and a Juris Doctor from the University of Toronto. Alicia joined the Alberta Indigenous Opportunities Corporation from CIBC’s executive team where she developed and implemented CIBC’s Indigenous Markets strategy and framework. In this role, she established and proudly led an expert national Indigenous Markets team. At AIOC, Alicia continues her dedication to Indigenous economic prosperity and wellness by bolstering Indigenous access to capital and the economy and supporting meaningful Indigenous ownership in mid to large scale resource and related infrastructure projects.
Alicia is the Co-Chair of the Board of Directors of the Canadian Council for Aboriginal Business and served as a member of the Board of Trustees of the Royal Ontario Museum. She actively contributes to awareness building and enhancing the positive national narrative around Indigenous finance and prosperity via speaking engagements with industry, governments and diverse audiences across the country. In 2019, Alicia was honoured with the National Aboriginal Trust Officers Association’s inaugural Award of Distinction for her steadfast commitment to Indigenous prosperity and self-determination. Prior to her career in Indigenous financial services, Alicia practiced law at Alberta Justice, ENMAX Corporation and Native Child and Family Services of Toronto.
President & CEO
Canadian Council for Aboriginal Business
Tabatha is Anishinaabe and a proud member of Nipissing First Nation near North Bay, Ontario. She is currently the President & CEO of Canadian Council for Aboriginal Business working with Aboriginal and non-Aboriginal businesses to help strengthen a prosperous Indigenous economy and Canadian market. Also, a member of the Ontario Chamber of Commerce board, Tabatha is committed to working with members to improve business competitiveness across all industry sectors. Prior to her current role as CEO, Tabatha joined CCAB in the fall of 2018 as Chief Operating Officer.
Tabatha, an electrical engineer from the University of Waterloo, led the First Nations and Métis Relations team at the IESO, Ontario’s electricity system operator. Supporting and advising Canada’s energy sector, academics and organizations to ensure a collaborative approach with Indigenous leaders, communities, heads of industry and government, Tabatha sits as a member on both the Positive Energy Advisory Council and the C.D. Howe Institute’s Energy Policy program.
As a testament to her passion to better the lives of Indigenous people and stay connected to her community, Tabatha serves as a director on the board of Wigwamen Housing Inc.; the oldest and largest urban Indigenous housing provider in Ontario.
Tabatha is also an active member on the board of Young Peoples Theatre in Toronto and the Canadian advisory group to UN Women “promoting women’s economic empowerment through responsible business in G7 countries”.
Tabatha is the proud mom to two boys and can often be found in a hockey arena or at the baseball diamond.