Launch of Aboriginal Business Award for Forest Industry

OTTAWA, May 13, 2013 /CNW/ - The Forest Products Association of Canada (FPAC) and the Canadian Council for Aboriginal Business (CCAB) today announced that nominations are open for this year's Aboriginal Business Leadership Award. The $5,000 award recognizes and celebrates First Nations entrepreneurs for their success in a forest products business that exemplifies business leadership, exceptional environmental and safety performance and the delivery of high-quality products and services. The recipient must also demonstrate a strong, long-term commitment to the Aboriginal community, particularly in supporting Aboriginal employment.

"We are delighted to once again offer an award to recognize the leadership excellence of an Aboriginal business in the forest products sector," said the President and CEO of FPAC, David Lindsay. "Under Vision2020, we are aiming to refresh our workforce with an additional 60,000 recruits by the end of the decade, and Aboriginals are a key target.  We particularly want to encourage Aboriginal businesses that  show a long term commitment to Aboriginal employment."

President and CEO of the CCAB JP Gladu stated, "We are in the business of showcasing the leadership and contributions of outstanding Aboriginal business in Canada each and every day.  The forest sector continues to contribute to the health and vitality of our Aboriginal communities in so many ways.  The business success of our people in this sector is helping to educate all Canadians about our enormous accomplishments and economic potential.  The Aboriginal Business Leadership Award is a celebration of our continued business success and an important link on the bridge to sustainable economic prosperity."

There are now approximately 1,400 Aboriginal owned businesses in Canada, and about 17,000 Aboriginal people working in the sector, making the forest products industry the largest employer for First Nations workers.

This is the fourth time that the award will be handed. Previous recipients have been Grace Esquega, the President of Niigaani Enterprises in Gull Bay, Ontario; Percy Guichon, the Chief of the Alexis Creek Indian Band; Tsi Del Del Enterprises of Chilanko Forks BC and Al Humphrys, the general manager of Duz Cho logging, owned by the McLeod Lake Indian Band.  The award nominees are judged against six criteria: business leadership, longevity, employment of Aboriginal peoples, safety and environmental performance, consistency of goods and services provided and commitment to the Aboriginal community.

Nominations are due July 30, 2013.  The award will be handed out in the fall of 2013 at the CCAB gala in Vancouver on September 23, 2013.  For more information go to URL:

FPAC provides a voice for Canada's wood, pulp, and paper producers nationally and internationally in government, trade, and environmental affairs. The $57-billion-a-year forest products industry represents 2% of Canada's GDP and is one of Canada's largest employers operating in hundreds of communities and providing 230,000 direct jobs across the country.


For further information:

Susan Murray
Executive Director, Public Relations
Forest Products Association of Canada 613-563-1441 x313
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