20 questions with Stewart Phillip
For this feature, Globe B.C. borrows from Marcel Proust (and media that have popularized the French author’s questionnaire) as a way to get to know notable people around the province.
Here is Grand Chief Stewart Phillip, the president of the Union of B.C. Indian Chiefs. 1. Do you have a non-work-related passion or hobby? What is it? I suppose it would be fishing, camping and hunting. 2. What is your greatest fear? Being separated from family and loved ones. 3. If you have $1-million to give to a charity, what cause or group would you select and why? I would donate to organizations that meaningfully address and speak out against violence against women and girls. 4. Which living person do you most admire? The honest truth is that it’s Joan, my wife. She’s got it all. Courage, principles, integrity, hard-working and dedicated. She’s everything and I wouldn’t be who I am if it wasn’t for her. 5. What do you most value in your
friends? Loyalty. 6. What was your first paying job? I worked at the hospital in Quesnel in the janitorial department. 7. What is the best present you have ever been given? Aside from my kids and grandkids, I received a second chance at life after an organ transplant. 8. If you could change one thing about yourself, what would it be? I would live in the moment. 9. What is your guiltiest pleasure? I love to travel but it takes me away from my home and family. 10. What trait do you most despise? Lack of integrity. 11. What do you consider your greatest achievement? My 15 grandchildren. 12. The best movie you have seen in the past year? Lion. 13. The best book you have read in the last year? Bury My Heart at Wounded Knee – an all-time classic that I like to reread. 14. Your favourite TV show? Historical documentaries. 15. What most inspires you? People who stand up against adversity and great odds and take a principled position. 16. What talent would you most like to have? Singing. 17. An object you still own from childhood? A painted figurine of a cowboy leaning up against a fence. 18. What is the greatest issue facing Vancouver or B.C.? Climate change. 19. What life lesson have you learned this year? The need to take care of yourself and your health. It’s a serious commitment that you need to understand. 20. What is your life motto? One day at a time.
Grand Chief Stewart Phillip, president of the Union of BC Indian Chiefs, speaks during a First Nations Child and Family Wellness Council news conference in Vancouver in 2014.