Co-Chairs

Maxime Faille, Partner, Gowling WLG, Vancouver, BC. Named Benchmark Canada’s Aboriginal Law Litigator of the Year for 2016, Max Faille served until recently as national leader of the Indigenous Law Group at Gowling WLG, which was honoured by Best Lawyers in Canada as “Aboriginal Law Firm of the Year” for 2018-2019. Max’s clients consist of Indigenous governments, businesses and entrepreneurs across Canada, as well as private sector interests and other governments seeking to work with Indigenous communities. In addition to legal representation in the courts and in negotiations, Max regularly provides advice on matters of Aboriginal and treaty rights, First Nation taxation, self-government, Aboriginal consultation and accommodation, impact and benefit agreements, and Indigenous economic development.

   

Jaimie LickersPartner and National Leader of the Indigenous Law Group, Gowling WLG, Hamilton, ON. Ms. Lickers is a member of the advocacy department and her practice is focused on the areas of Indigenous, environmental and construction law. In 2018, Ms. Lickers was appointed as the national leader of Gowling WLG’s Indigenous Law Group. Ms. Lickers has experience with First Nations on a variety of matters, including taxation, trusts, self-government, regulatory matters and consultation issues. Ms. Lickers has appeared before the Supreme Court of Canada, the Ontario Superior Court of Justice, the Tax Court of Canada, the Federal Court of Canada, the Federal Court of Appeal and the Ontario Court of Appeal. She regularly presents at conferences on topics related to First Nations taxation, First Nations trusts, Indigenous litigation, and consultation and accommodation.

   

Faculty

Grand Chief Abram Benedict, Mohawk Council of Akwesasne, Akwesasne. Abram Benedict is currently the Grand Chief for the Mohawk Council of Akwesasne. In the position of Grand Chief, Abram leads a dynamic Council of 12 members that govern the Mohawk Community of Akwesasne. The Mohawk Council of Akwesasne is an advanced First Nation community that delivers a wide variety of services to its members. Akwesasne is uniquely located on the international boundaries of Canada the United States and the provincial boundaries of Ontario and Quebec. Before joining the Mohawk Council of Akwesasne in 2006, Abram managed the workforce for Four Directions Petroleum, a First Nation company that exported fuel from Canada into sovereign tribal nations within the United States. Abram Benedict is a lifetime resident of Akwesasne and is a father to his eighteen-year-old daughter, Havana. Abram studied business administration at Algonquin College, serves as a Governor for St. Lawrence College and is a current member of the Chairperson’s Indigenous Circle of the Parole Board of Canada.

   

Ernest Jack, Surveyor of Taxes, Westbank First Nation, Kelowna, BC. Ernest Jack is the Surveyor of Taxes for Westbank First Nation as well as an elected member of council for the Penticton Indian Band. He is the president of the First Nation Tax Administrators Association, an organization committed to advancing the professional management of First Nations property tax systems.

   

Marie L. Potvin, Barrister & Solicitor, Kamloops, BC. Marie has been practising for over 20 years with a focus on local government, Indigenous and environmental law. For the past 14 years, Marie has worked closely with the First Nations Tax Commission to support First Nation tax jurisdiction through policy and law development. She has provided advice on the development of federal legislative amendments and regulatory reform, and has worked with numerous First Nations to implement taxation regimes on their lands. Marie is an online faculty member at Thompson Rivers University and an instructor with the Tulo Centre of Indigenous Economics.

   

Randy Price, Commissioner, First Nations Tax Commission, Kamloops, BC. Mr. Randy Price is a Certified Public Accountant, CA, a Commissioner of the First Nations Tax Commission for the past 12 years and a member of the Audit Committee. He is a respected natural gas pipeline industry tax professional from British Columbia with 42 years experience in taxation. He was Vice President, Financial Services at Westcoast Energy Inc. and Duke Energy Corporation from 1977 to 2003, responsible for income and property taxation, insurance and internal audit. He has consulted on First Nations issues through RCPrice &Associates and PriceWaterhouseCoopers for the past 16 years and has experience with First Nation property tax issues as they relate to the interests of non-Aboriginal commercial taxpayers on reserves.

   

Max Reed, Cross-Border Tax Lawyer, SKL Tax, Vancouver, BC. Max solves tax problems that span both sides of the Canada-US border. Max is the co-author (with Dick Pound of Stikeman Elliot) of A Tax Guide for American Citizens in Canada, as well as over 20 technical and plain language articles on a wide range of cross-border tax topics. Recognized for his expertise, Max is often invited to speak at conferences and seminars for tax professionals and the general public. He was invited to testify before the Canadian House of Commons Finance Committee on the impact of US tax law on Canadians.

   

District Chief Edward Roundpoint, Mohawk Council of Akwesasne, Akwesasne. District Chief Edward Roundpoint is a Kawehno:ke District Chief of the Mohawk Council of Akwesasne.

   
Jan SampsonFCPA, FCA, Executive Vice President, Member and Student Experience, CPABC, Vancouver, BC. Jan Sampson is the executive vice-president, Member and Student Experience for CPABC. She and her team are responsible for providing educational support for members through an extensive professional development program, providing networking and learning opportunities through chapters, forums, articles, providing one-on-one member advisory services support, and an extensive array of member benefits. Her team also supports students and advises on the experience requirements for the CPA professional education program (CPA PEP) and is responsible for recruitment into the CPA PEP and the Advanced Certificate in Accounting and Finance (ACAF) program and communications.
   

Michael WeltersPartner, Aldridge + Rosling, Vancouver BC. Michael advises on taxes and inter-governmental fiscal relations. Michael specializes in providing tax advice to the tax-exempt sector, including modern treaty nations, bands, municipalities, health authorities, school districts, charities and non-profit organizations. He provides those clients with advice on: obtaining or maintaining their income tax exempt status and structuring new activities; complying with and mitigating their commodity tax obligations (e.g., PST, GST, property transfer tax); and the application of, or exemption from, annual property taxes. Michael teaches Aboriginal tax as an adjunct professor at the UBC Faculty of Law.

   
Mindy WightCPA, CA, National Leader, Indigenous Tax Services, MNP LLP, Prince George, BC. Mindy is a Partner and Tax Specialist with MNP and serves as National Leader, Indigenous Tax Services. Based in Prince George, BC and serving First Nation clients and communities across Canada, Mindy specializes in helping First Nation members and organizations to utilize and maintain their income tax exemptions when organizing their corporate structures. Her clients include proprietorships, corporations, trusts and partnerships owned by First Nation members and communities. Mindy is a member of the Squamish Nation in North Vancouver, BC. With more than a decade of experience, Mindy assists her clients with purchases and sales of businesses, reorganizing companies, and minimizing taxes.

   

Curtis ZoilaCPA, CA, Senior Manager and Tax Specialist, MNP LLP, Saskatoon, SK. Curtis works with owner-managers of businesses along with a focus on First Nation members and organizations for tax planning and succession planning to assist in minimizing taxes and maximizing profits. Curtis has knowledge and experience in the area of Indigenous Tax Services and works closely with his clients to develop a keen understanding of their operations and unique financial situations. He proactively identifies potential issues and delivers practical, innovative solutions allowing his clients to make informed decisions based on their strategic goals. Curtis takes pride in helping his clients plan for the future.