Ochapowace Nation is proud to announce the establishment of the Ochapowace Nation Treasury Board.   Following the announcement of the Governance Renewal in the recruitment for independent Treasury Board members was conducted and completed in August of 2021. 

Through the summer of 2021, the independent positions for Treasury Board members were posted for competition.  Candidates were interviewed, recommended and officially approved by the Ochapowace Nation Council in August of 2021.   

The purpose of the Treasury Board is to provide structured oversight of the organization’s financial affairs, risk management, and internal controls practices.  The Treasury Board assists Council with this by providing advice and guidance on the adequacy of the organization’s framework and structure for:

  • Risk Management
  • Internal Controls
  • External and Internal Audit
  • Financial Statements and Public Accountability Reporting
  • Financial Planning

In broad terms, the Treasury Board reviews each of the items noted above and provides Council with advice on the adequacy and effectiveness of management’s practices.  This advice and guidance also may include suggestions and recommendations to strengthen these arrangements. 

The Treasury Board is made up of three appointed members of Council and two Independent members.  Of the three members of Council, the representatives are Headwoman Audrey Isaac, Headwoman Lynn Bear, and Headwoman Petra Belanger. The two Independent representatives are Donna Bear and Geraldine Bear. 

Although the announcement was delayed, the Treasury Board has been active.  The objectives and work in progress since establishment are on noted below and on track to be completed by the end of the 2022 fiscal year.  

  • a workplan for the Treasury Board and reporting to the Chief and Council;
  • a comprehensive understanding of the Ochapowace Nation Financial Law;
  • a review and recommendation of the Financial Management Policies;
  • a review and recommendation of the Treasury Board Terms of Reference;
  • a review of the management letter and audit reporting matters; 
  • as well as quarterly review and monitoring of the YTD financial statements. 

Introducing the Treasury Board Members

We make honorable mention of Chief/Headman Ross Allary for his initial appointment to the Treasury Board.  He was able to participate in the early developments. 

Headwoman Audrey Isaac

Proud daughter of Albert and Evelyn Isaac, fourteen siblings, Mother to four loving sons, grandmother to seven grandchildren. 

Served Ochapowace Nation for 10 years as an Elected Leader, 20 years as Health Manager and a Certified Community Health Representative. In addition, Audrey is a certified personal development trainer and recently completed Trustee Training.  Certified First Nations Health Manager (FNHMA) Dale Carnegie Course on Public Speaking and Human Relations – 1991-2014. 

I continue to embrace change and empower self and others through my decision-making abilities. I have been assigned duties of the Treasury Board Chair.

Headwoman Lynn Bear

Proud daughter of Darlene and Blair and Mother of Rebecca, Andrew and Tianna. 2 siblings.

Business Administration Certificate and Hospitality and Gaming Entertainment Management Certificate.  - University of Regina, Office Education Certificate - SIAST, Grade 12 Diploma Lebret Indian Residential School, Chairperson Specific Claims Trust, Peace Hills Trust Certification - 2021

Currently 1 ½ years experience of Council experience with Laws & Justice Mandate, 3 ½ years Human Resource Manager, 2 years Crown Corporation, 9 years Post Secondary Coordinator. 

Headwoman Petra Belanger

Petra believes in the nehiyo way of wahkotowin – relationship. She is a loving mother to sons, Brandon and Tavven, and a kokum. Petra’s nikawiy was Verna Belanger (nee Bob) and nohtawiy was the late Joseph Belanger.  Sister to Christene. 

Served 22 years as an Elected Leader,  3 years in Lands and 2 years in Economic Development.  19 years in the Ochapowace specific claims trust.  Board Member of the SIIT for 22 years and part of the team to establish the BCCDI.  She is a currently serving a term to 2023 as a Council member representing Ochapowace Nation serving and leading with her heart the citizens since 1995 in various capacities. My education is in Business Administration and Bachelor of Arts year 3 as well as 20 plus years experience. 

Donna Bear - Independent Treasury Board Member

Daughter of the late Andy and Eileen Farkas, Mother of Thomas Pratt, Reagan Bear, and Justin Waskewitch.  Married to Fernando Montes, Kokum to 9 grandchildren.  7 siblings. 

Currently in the Masters of Public Administration Candidate from University of Regina.  Graduated with a Bachelor of Administration from the University of Regina in 2000.   Received an Indian Business Management Diploma from the Saskatchewan Institute of Applied Science and Technology in 1996. 

Serving 22 years working with various First Nation communities in Saskatchewan, Manitoba, and Alberta as a Co-manager/3rd Party Manager.  Sessional instructor for the U of R and SIAST in business management.  Alumni Member of the Governor General of Canada Leadership Conference, recipient of the RBC Business Award, Member of the National Technical Committee for Remoteness.  Board of Trustee for First Nation Trust and Board Member of Fishing Lake Indian.  She advises on and provides training and coaching to First Nations in the strategic and operational aspects of management, finance, and change. Child and Family Services. Her life’s work has been inspired by both her traditional teachings and formal education.

Geraldine Bear - Independent Treasury Board Member

Wife of Lloyd Bear. Daughter of Joyce Taypotat and adopted Daughter of Beatrice and Denton George.   15 siblings.  Mother of Ethan Bear, NHL Player for Caroline Hurricanes, drafted by Edmonton Oilers 2015; Everett Bear, UofM Hockey Player 2003, OCN Blizzard Hockey – League Champions 2001-2002.  Tori Bear, NAX AAA Female Hockey – 2021; Tara Bear – Provincial Record for Field Event of Shotput and Ochapowace Boxing Participant. Grandmother to Eva, Sakari and Buster Bear. 

Currently serves as the Director of Finance for Kahkewistahaw First Nation for 16 years.  Director of Finance for Ochapowace Nation for 8 years.  Executive Secretary to Ochapowace Chief and Council for 4 years.   Elected to Ochapowace Council 2011-2014.  Education – CAFM Certified Aboriginal Financial Manager.  Business Admin and Accountancy (with Distinction) – SIAST Moose Jaw SK 1996.  Trustee Certification – NATOA and Lethbridge College 2013.  Indigenous Leadership, Governance and Management Excellence Certification – Banff Centre 2014.  Dale Carnegie Course on Public Speaking and Human Relations – 1991-2014.  Current Boards and Committees – 4 Nations Minor Hockey Board, Recreation Committee and Treasury Board for Ochapowace.   Adhoc for Law Development 2022. Owner Operator of LJ’s Enterprises for 30 years.