Our Featured Celebration
When we read that March is “Proposals Month”, we immediately thought of the kind of Proposals that we at the Consilium Consulting Group (CCG) prepare each week. Not so, we learned – March is apparently the month during which you are encouraged to express your unrequited love by inviting the object of your affection to share a life of connubial bliss. So we thought we’d celebrate by soliciting matrimonial proposals for our only two remaining unaccountably uncommitted staff: Christian “the Clootch” Cloutier (left) and Geoff “Big Rig” Rigby (right). Given that it’s Proposals Month, both have generously agreed to put their marital futures at the disposal of our readership in the corporate interest.
It’s a tough choice, we know.
Proposals will be accepted by phone, email, fax, mail, courier, telex, telegraph, carrier pigeon or telepathy. With luck, next month’s gossip section will tinkle to the sound of wedding bells.
On the topic of wooing, after years of professional courtship, Alex Ker (pictured right) has finally succumbed to our blandishments and joined our merry band at Consilium as a full time consultant. Alex (referred to around here as “She Who Can Actually Keep Up With Fred”) obtained her Master’s Degree in Sociology from Cambridge University, and an MA in Public Administration at Carleton University. She began consulting in the year 20 B.C. (that’s Before Consilium), working both independently and with such groups as the Royal Commission on Aboriginal Peoples and the Centre for Policy and Program Assessment. Her principal Consilium, Stonecircle and Aarluk clients over the last couple of years have included the Deline First Nation, Sagamok Anishnawbek, and the Government of Nunavut. Welcome, Alex!
(Pictured above: Justice Thomas Berger addressing the 2006 Land Claims Agreements Coalition)
Planning for the third national land claims conference, “Claiming Our Future: Implementing Land Claims Agreements for Social and Economic Prosperity” is well underway. Patti Black is working with Jennifer David and Patty Saulis to coordinate another exciting event on behalf of the Land Claims Agreements Coalition. The conference, scheduled for May 12-14, 2009 at the Crowne Plaza Hotel in Ottawa, will draw over 450 land claims stakeholders from across Canada and internationally. Themes will pick up from the recommendations coming out of the “Achieving Objectives” conference in 2006, and focus on regional, national and international strategies to maximize the social and economic opportunities that lie within modern treaties. Agenda and registration information will be available shortly on the Coalition website: www.landclaimscoalition.ca. Email Patty Saulis to add your name to the conference mailing list: email@example.com.
Click HERE to register online! Yes, you read that correctly - the CCG now offers online registration! We are now a proud user of Cvent online registration software, which allows us (and you!) to manage workshop, conference and meeting registration needs online. Watch for Cvent capability on the upcoming 2030 NORTH, Claiming Our Future and National NAHO conferences!
Three is a charm for Stonecircle’s involvement with the Centre for Addiction and Mental Health (CAMH). While Jennifer David was already working on a literature review on Aboriginal treatment centres, CAMH has contracted Stonecircle to do an environmental scan of smoking cessation programs aimed at Aboriginal people, and again to coordinate an environmental scan of provincial services and programs to Aboriginal people in the areas of mental health and addiction. Wanda Brascoupé-Peters will help with the environmental scan of smoking cessation programs, which will include development of recommendations to CAMH for their own province-wide strategy aimed at Aboriginal people. Jeff Cyr will coordinate the environmental scan on mental health and addiction services and programs, leading to a gap analysis.
Terry Forth, Terry Rudden, and John Hicks will be working on the next Nunavut Wildlife Symposium to be held March 16-19 in Rankin Inlet. This major event, which will gather over 100 participants drawn from all Nunavut communities and regions, is sponsored by Nunavut Tunngavik Inc. (NTI), the Government of Nunavut (GN), the Nunavut Wildlife Management Board, the Nunavut Wildlife Secretariat, and the federal government departments of Fisheries and Oceans and the Canadian Wildlife Service. The Symposium, held every 4-5 years, is an excellent opportunity for those involved in the management of wildlife in Nunavut to meet over several days and compare notes on new developments, trends and latest available research. Watch this space next month for an update – and perhaps even some pictures!
Stonecircle’s Jennifer David will be providing communications support to the Assembly of First Nations (AFN) at the upcoming Inter-Nation Trade and Economic Summit, March 9-11 in Toronto. Jennifer will write daily conference summaries for delegates and then oversee the writing of a final conference report. Click here for more information on the conference.
Three years of hard work will culminate on Tuesday March 3 at 11:30 am as the Land Claims Agreements Coalition publicly releases its highly-anticipated national land claims implementation policy titled "Honour, Spirit and Intent: A Model Canadian Policy on the Full Implementation of Modern Treaties Between Aboriginal Peoples and the Crown". Patti Black is coordinating the release, which includes a meeting with the Minister of Indian and Northern Affairs Canada (INAC), the Honourable Chuck Strahl, and a press conference in the parliamentary press gallery, 130-S Centre Block, Ottawa. Copies of the policy will be available online at the Coalition website: www.landclaimscoalition.ca.
Alex Ker and Fred Weihs continue to work with Sagamok Anishnawbek to complete several projects as part of the First Nation’s Mineral Industry Relations Initiative. These include Impact Benefit Agreement (IBA) negotiations and capacity building projects such as the development of a human resource strategy and business plan for the mining sector. A traditional knowledge mapping project is also nearing completion, with data being gathered by mining office staff working in conjunction with community Elders. In the energy sector, Sagamok has been participating in consultations organized by the Ontario Power Authority (OPA) and the Union of Ontario Indians on the proposed Integrated Power System Plan. Through Stonecircle, Patty Saulis and Alex have been providing research support and assistance in the preparation of a position paper for submission to the OPA.
Aarluk has begun work on a project to evaluate the Nunavut Community Wellness Project (NCWP) for NTI. The evaluation will focus on lessons learned, best practices, and NCWP outcomes. The first major workshop of representatives from six Nunavut communities selected as pilots was held at the end of February; the Aarluk team (Greg Smith, Project Manager, Alex Ker, Geoff Rigby and Cindy Rennie) is developing the detailed research strategy and work plan, and research tools. The NCWP will explore, develop and implement approaches to increase integration among community-based health programs and services in Nunavut.
Terry Forth and Helen Klengenberg will be facilitating a meeting of Inuit and Government leaders in Rankin Inlet, in early March, as part of Aarluk’s support to GN for the implementation of the new Language Acts. The meeting is expected to set some parameters for territorial roundtables and a Language Summit planned for later this year. Meanwhile, Terry Rudden is working with the Department of Culture, Language, Elders and Youth on communications strategies to help inform Nunavummiut about their historic new legislation.
Alex Ker has returned from Deline, NWT and is finalizing two projects for the community as part of implementation planning for the Deline Final Self-Government Agreement. The first project involves an evaluation of the education system in Deline, overseen by CCG associate, Blair Stevenson. Under the second project Alex is assessing the prospects for centralizing the accounting systems of four government organizations in Deline as a transitional measure on the road to self-government.
Stonecircle is drafting its report on the Process and Impact Evaluation of the National Aboriginal Health Organization (NAHO). The team is made up of Greg Smith (Project Manager), Jennifer David, Patty Saulis and David Boult.
While in the NWT in February Alex Ker had an opportunity to meet with Consilium partners Bob Wooley of AECOM and Allan Twissel of NorthWays Consulting to plot a strategy to finalize a Training Plan for the Department of Environment and Renewable Resources. To date this project has been an entirely virtual collaboration.
Aarluk is helping the Aboriginal Human Resource Council (AHRC) to organize the eleventh Workforce Connex Forum, to be held in Iqaluit, Nunavut – March 2nd and 3rd, 2009. A Nunavut Advisory Committee has been established to help plan the event. The Committee is comprised of representatives from the Government of Nunavut, Nunavut Arctic College, Nunavut Employees Union, Kakivak Association, Kivalliq Partners in Development, Kitikmeot Economic Commission, New Mont Mining Company, Baffin Regional Chamber of Commerce, and Nunavut Municipal Administrators. The theme of the forum is “Building Strong Inuit And Employers Partnerships”. More details on the forum can be found on the AHRC’s website: www.aboriginalhr.ca.
The audio guide for the First Peoples Hall at the Canadian Museum of Civilization is now complete. Jennifer David worked with Museum staff and Cree actor Billy Merasty (Moose TV and many films and theatre roles across Canada), who provided the English narration. Once the guide is launched, you will also hear Jennifer’s voice narrating the story of Sky Woman.
Jennifer David has provided Dr. Fred Wien with a dozen vignettes and stories to accompany his paper on the State of the First Nation Economy. The paper is being finalized and printed for the upcoming AFN Inter-Nation Trade and Economic Summit.
ACTRA-winning writer, journalist and trainer Ken Rockburn, formerly of CBC, CHEZ-FM and CPAC, travelled to Iqaluit for (believe it or not) the first time in his life, and co-facilitated a workshop in Media Relations with Jennifer David. While Ken reported that the biggest treat was meeting and working with the folks from the GN’s Department of Environment, he couldn’t get over the warmth and hospitality of the community, including Wednesday “wing night” at the Legion with Aarluk’s Terry Forth.
OUR READERS WRITE...
From one of our most loyal newsletter readers, who sadly feels betrayed by last month’s feature on Hawkins Cheezies:
“I should have remembered that wise saying I heard somewhere: ‘Don't believe everything a consultant tells you – or at least take it with a grain of salt.’ In this case, I took it with too many grains of salt: I went to the store and they did not have my preferred version of cheesies (known as Cheese Puffs). When I saw Hawkins Cheezies, I thought ‘Well, Consilium touts them as the best?!?’. Hawkins Cheezies did not meet my standards - they were too salty. So there's 3/4 of a pack sitting on my desk waiting to be tossed into the trash, and I now have to look for a chocolate cookie. But I do believe in the neoclassic bread pudding recipe. So, some of the advice is good.”
First of all, DON’T throw those Hawkins in the trash. We’re going to send over a courier to collect them. While cognizant of the wide range of gastronomic preferences represented among our diverse and sophisticated readership, and with all due respect to the esteemed correspondent cited above, we must stand by our original recommendation, and in fact we have to note that two weeks after our last newsletter was published, we received a box of complimentary Cheezies from the fine folks at Hawkins, which was scarfed down in, like, fifteen minutes tops.
A second Constant Reader writes:
“Just catching up on the numerous unread emails in my inbox, and noticed I hadn’t read the news organ that may one day soon be replacing the National Post. Or at least one news organ that will be publishing when the Post isn’t. But I digress. Your opening editorial leads to the important question: Have you ever seen an advertisement anywhere for Cheezies? They certainly are the best deep fried high fat high cholesterol generally truly deadly for geezers like us corn flour snacks in the world, but how does anyone know to buy that first package?”
A fascinating question, B. We think perhaps Hawkins Cheezies represent a kind of Snack Food Grail, a mystical synthesis that transcends normal channels of marketing and distribution, to which only the purest and most deserving are granted access. If you are meant to experience Hawkins Cheezies, Hawkins Cheezies will find you.
As part of the CCG’s Post-Christmas, errr… Christmas Festivities, last month saw the 2nd Annual Parking Lot Hockey Tournament take place. Here are some pictures of the highlights of the epic match between Team Aarluk and Team Consilium:
- Top-left: Stonecircle’s Patty Saulis obviously intrigued by the shape of this wooden stick;
- Top-middle: Team Aarluk, aka the losers, comprised of Big Rig and Chris Grosset;
- Top-right: Lei Han demonstrating his finely honed accounting skills;
- Middle-middle: Team Aarluk and Team Consilium take a break for a photo-up with super fan Jennifer Bradshaw;
- Bottom-left: Big Rig showing his depreciation of Team Consilium’s victory;
- Bottom-middle: Team Consilium, aka the winners, comprised of Clootch and Chuck;
- Bottom-right: A view of the match from Consilium’s Sky Cam.
FIFTEEN YEARS AGO
In March 1994, the “Maybe We Should Get Real and Rent an Office with Decent Coffee” Committee was formed, and began to explore potential space for the No-Name Consulting Company. A lot of truly wretched options were identified, but there was one little place on Argyle Ave, a building occupied by Catholic Family Services. Nice people, bright, well lit space, good parking, and a world class Vietnamese Chip Truck parked up at the corner. This could be the one, they thought…
JUST ADDED TO THE CCG MERCHANDISE STORE...
Introducing the first in our new series of highly collectible, soon to be priceless CCG Corporate Cards. Buy ’em! Trade ’em! Leave ’em in your pocket to get crumpled up and dissolve into lint in the washer! Collect the entire set! To kick things off: The Gilhuly!
CHECK BACK EVERY MONTH FOR MORE CONSILIUM, STONECIRCLE AND AARLUK NEWS, TOOLS, AND GOSSIP.