While the interns enjoyed a very interesting and informative day in the Six Nations community a few weeks ago, we had a great time learning more about the Six Nations of the Grand River and First Nations issues from the Chief of Six Nations, Ava Hill.
Chief Hill discussed her illustrious and interesting career working with First Nations issues in the federal government and beyond. In the beginning of her career, Chief Hill worked under Jean Chrétien in the department of Indian Affairs and she relayed to us the work that she did under Chrétien and the Pierre Trudeau government. It was definitely interesting for us, as young interns, to hear about the history of the federal government’s relationship with First Nations communities in the 1960s.
After discussing her time in the federal government, Chief Hill discussed her experience working with the Chiefs of Ontario and the Association of First Nations. We all enjoyed hearing the Chief discuss her experiences during crucial times for First Nations communities, as she told us about her time working during the Oka crisis and other similar crucial crises. Chief Hill also discussed her commitment to her own community, and the importance of dealing with issues around violence and sexual exploitation that some of their community members face.
After telling us about her interesting and diverse career, Chief Hill gave us advice on leadership and networking. We all benefitted from her key insights on how to surround yourself with the best people and focus on building and developing one’s own network.
It was great to hear from Chief Hill and understand more about the Six Nations of the Grand River. We will be sure to apply her advice and we all hope to see her develop a great future for the Six Nations community.