Tsawwassen First Nation Chief-elect Bryce Williams today thanked his community for participating in the second general election in its short history of self-goverance.
“Tsawwassen Government is now entering its second mandate as the elected representatives of our proud, self-governing Nation,” said Williams in a statement released to media.
The 23-year-old aboriginal leader was first elected to the executive council during the 2009 inaugural elections following an historical treaty negotiated by outgoing Chief Kim Baird in 2007.
“Our government has come a long way in its first mandate, and there is still much to do. Our second term promises to be extremely exciting, as we look to continue building a sustainable economy and revenue base to secure a healthy, promising future for our community. “
The new Chief reiterated that TFN will continue to focus on important economic development projects, referring to the massive commercial and residential plans planned on TFN over the next several years.
“In addition to those projects, we will be focusing on important community initiatives,” he added.
The new term of Tsawwassen Government begins on Sept. 16. The Chief, legislators and executive Council will be formally sworn in on Sept. 22 at TFN’s Annual General Meeting.
Williams also thanked the nearly 60 per cent of eligible voters who turned out Wednesday (Sept. 5) to cast their ballots for the executive council.
“In particular, I want to extend a special thank-you to Chief Kim Baird for her many years of hard work and dedication to her community. Through her tireless and groundbreaking efforts, she has given our Nation a promising future. We all owe her a great debt of service.”
Baird was herself a relative youngster when she entered First Nation politics, just 28 when she became a member of council, followed by 13 years as Chief. She is now 42.
“I can’t believe all the support people are sending me!” she wrote on Twitter. “I’m very grateful. I also got a job offer already.”
Williams was the sole political opponent in what Baird termed a “pretty quiet campaign” and has yet to agree to a public interview with media. An artist and carver, Williams was featured in the Leader’s 30 under 30 in 2010.
Elected to the legislature last night was Jesseca Adams, Andrea Jacobs, Louise Ahlm, Nikki Jacobs, Tony Jacobs, Ken Baird, Marvin Joe, Karl Morgan, Laura Cassidy, Steven Stark, Melinda Cassidy, and Sheila Williams.
Jacob Baird, Karl Morgan, Tony Jacobs, and Sheila Williams were elected to the Executive Council by virtue of receiving the highest number of votes.