Surrey Urban Indigenous Leadership Committee welcomes new co-chairs

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The Surrey Urban Indigenous Leadership Committee (SUILC) is pleased to announce that it will be welcoming two new co-chairs; Shelly Hill, CEO of the Kekinow Native Housing Society, and Cassandra Dorgelo, Youth Program and Policy Analyst at the Métis Nation of British Columbia. The two new co-chairs will be joining current chair of the committee, City of Surrey Councillor Vera LeFranc.

Convened in 2015, the Surrey Urban Indigenous Leadership Committee is a collective voice of the urban Indigenous population in Surrey. SUILC works collaboratively with other governments, organizations, and individuals who are committed to achieving their vision of creating a city in which Indigenous contributions to city life are valued, reconciliation is a priority, and every Indigenous person has the opportunity to achieve their full potential.

“I am thrilled to welcome these two exceptional leaders to the role of co-chair, as we are moving ahead quickly to implement the SUILC Social Innovation Strategy approved last year,” said Councillor LeFranc, the current chair of SUILC. “The City of Surrey is firmly committed to the work being done by the Leadership Committee, and I am excited to see Shelly and Cassandra step into their new positions.”

Shelly Hill is a Haudenosaunee of the Kahnawà:ke (Upper Mohawk Nation), Ratiniáhten (Turtle Clan) from Six Nations of the Grand River, Ontario. She has been a member of SUILC since its creation in 2015, and currently is the CEO of Kekinow Native Housing Society, located in Surrey. Shelly also holds a Master of Arts Degree in Leadership.

Cassandra Dorgelo is a (‘non-status’) Aboriginal woman – and an ally of the Métis Nation - who is in the process of reclaiming her Shíshálh (sxixus), xʷməθkʷəy̓əm, and Kw’amutsun (Qwum’yiqun) roots. Cassandra has been a member of SUILC since September 2017. She also works as Program and Policy Analyst with Métis Nation British Columbia (MNBC)’s Ministry of Youth. She received her Bachelor of Arts – Honors in Psychology and Major in International Relations – at St. Thomas University in Fredericton, New Brunswick.

The City of Surrey is home to the one of the largest urban Indigenous populations in Canada with a population of over thirteen thousand. The City also has the youngest Indigenous population in the province, with 36% of the urban Indigenous population in Surrey being under the age of 19.

For more information, please visit the Surrey Urban Indigenous Leadership Committee webpage at surrey.ca/indigenous.

Contacts:

Vera LeFranc - Vera.LeFranc@surrey.ca

Shelly Hill - shelly@kekinow.ca

Cassandra Dorgelo - cdorgelo@mnbc.ca