Victoria, BC (April 23, 2021) – A newly elected Board of Directors brings years of experience, leadership, and balanced representation from First Nations, Métis, and Aboriginal Friendship Centres to advance the Indigenous Sport, Physical Activity & Recreation Council’s (I·SPARC) mission of improving the health and well-being of Indigenous people throughout BC.
“I know the investments we make in our youth and our people will reap many social benefits. We’re investing in the leaders of tomorrow,” said Corinne McKay, who was recently reappointed to the Board and to the position of President. “I appreciate seeing the strategic vision of I·SPARC becoming its own legal entity come to life and working alongside skilled and respectful board members. We have the utmost confidence in our Chief Executive Officer and staff. I look forward to continuing to serve I·SPARC as I see the potential for even greater opportunities to serve our youth, participants, and communities. Si aamhl wilsim’ – continue to do good work.”
In its inception, I·SPARC was hosted by the BC Association of Aboriginal Friendship Centres. In 2019, I·SPARC, with the support of its three Partner Agencies (the First Nations Health Authority, Métis Nation BC, and the BC Association of Aboriginal Friendship Centres), initiated a year-long process to become its own legal entity. An inaugural Board of Director’s was appointed and successfully carried out key activities including incorporation, implementing the new governance framework, and developing the organization’s operational policies and procedures over their nine-month term.
In January, I·SPARC launched a province-wide nomination process to seek candidates for the new Board. A total of 21 nominations were received by the Nominating Committee who were extremely impressed with the quality and depth of candidates. The recommendations of the Nominating Committee were approved by the membership resulting in the appointment of six Directors who have extensive experience with Indigenous sport and physical activity, possess diverse business and governance expertise, and provide a balanced representation from First Nations, Métis, and Aboriginal Friendship Centres.
I·SPARC is pleased to announce the appointment of the following Directors:
• Corinne McKay, Nisga’a Nation (President)
• Alan Edkins, Métis Nation BC (Vice President)
• Cheryl Charlie, Sts’ailes (Secretary/Treasurer)
• Dr. Curtis Smecher, Métis Nation BC
• Wally Samuel, Ahousaht First Nation
• Louise Ormerod, Kitwanga
The remaining three Directors will be appointed through I·SPARC’s regional processes, which are set to be completed prior to the organization’s Annual General Meeting scheduled for August.
“We are very grateful to the members of our inaugural board for leading I·SPARC through our transitional processes and helping to build a foundation for our future. The work they did represents a tremendous amount of time and commitment, which has set us up for success,” said Rick Brant, I·SPARC’s Chief Executive Officer. “With their support we have continued to design and deliver inspiring programs that positively impact the health and well-being of Indigenous youth, families, and communities throughout BC.”
About the Indigenous Sport, Physical Activity & Recreation Council
The Indigenous Sport, Physical Activity & Recreation Council (I·SPARC) is a provincial organization established with the purpose of improving the health outcomes of Indigenous people by supporting and encouraging physically active individuals, families, and communities. The programs and services delivered by I·SPARC are designed to build capacity and increase access to sport, recreation, and physical activity in First Nations, Métis Chartered Communities, Aboriginal Friendship Centres, schools, and other delivery agencies throughout British Columbia.