Na­tion Build­ing

BC Business Magazine - - Tmı - by Melissa Ed­wards

1,450,000

That’s the square footage of com­mer­cial real es­tate man­aged by the Okana­gan’s West­bank First Na­tion ( WFN), the largest such on­re­serve de­vel­op­ment in the coun­try. AFOA Canada (for­merly the Abo­rig­i­nal Fi­nan­cial Of­fi­cers As­so­ci­a­tion of Canada) will fea­ture WFN as a case study of lead­er­ship suc­cess at its in­au­gu­ral con­fer­ence in Van­cou­ver from Oc­to­ber 2 to 5. Some 1,300 busi­ness own­ers, chiefs, elders and fi­nan­cial man­agers from indige­nous com­mu­ni­ties around the world will dis­cuss long-term plan­ning, eco­nomic pros­per­ity and in­ter­na­tional co­op­er­a­tion. Terry Good­track, CEO of AFOA Canada, says WFN and other par­tic­i­pants bring lessons about es­tab­lish­ing fi­nan­cial and so­cial sus­tain­abil­ity after achiev­ing self-gov­er­nance. “Why these highly skilled fi­nan­cial man­agers ex­ist [in these com­mu­ni­ties] is be­cause now there is a role,” Good­track ex­plains. “You’re no longer man­ag­ing poverty; you’re man­ag­ing wealth and pros­per­ity.”

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