Miziwe Biik is overseen by an elected Board of Directors with the Executive Director reporting to the board. Our current board members are:
Krystal Abotossaway, President
Krystal Abotossaway is from Aundeck Omni-Kaning First Nations and Chippewas of Rama First Nations. She is an urban Ojibwe Anishinaabe Kwe. Krystal is a well sought after expert, speaker and leader on Indigenous engagement and recruitment. As Senior Manager at TD Bank, she is currently rotating through the various centre of excellences within the HR function. Providing strategic counsel, execution support, and collaborating across internal teams and external partners. Krystal has successfully completed her Masters degree at York University in Human Resource Management. She is also actively pursuing her Masters of Business Administration at Ivey, Western University. Krystal is recognized across Canada–in the media and within the broader Indigenous community–as an expert spokesperson for bridging strategies that will enable more Indigenous youth to achieve their aspirations and dreams. Her thought leadership in advancing Human Resources knowledge on Indigenous engagement is informed by her academic background and ongoing leadership roles on multiple Boards in the GTA.
Michael White, Vice-President
Michael White, Bear Clan, M’Chigeeng First Nation. Michael has served on the Miziwe Biik board for over thirteen years. Michael has his Honours B.A from the University of Toronto and is currently working on his Masters in Education. Currently Michael serves as a Special Projects Officer in the Office of Indigenous Initiatives at the University of Toronto In his spare time, Michael serves the community as a ceremonial conductor.
Jimmy Dick, Secretary
Jimmy Dick is of the Moose Cree First Nation from the community of Moose Factory Ontario. Its located in James Bay and within the Nishnawbe-Aski Nation. He is fluent in the Cree language and a Teacher/Educator on Native Culture and Spirituality. He is a proud father of seven children, five sons and two daughters. Jimmy has been actively involved since moving to Toronto in 1975. Jimmy is well known as a member of the Eagleheart Singers drum group who have been based in Toronto for the past twenty six years. Jimmy has been a community organizer for many years involved in the Native Rights Struggle. He is an active volunteer in the Toronto Native Community and served as a board member with various agencies.
Quazance is an Anishinaabekwe from Garden River First Nation. Better known as Qua, she has worked at Humber College supporting Indigenous students and has been sharing information on post-secondary education with First Nation communities since fall 2013. She is an advocate for Indigenous mental health and wellness through physical movement. Her passion is on advancing Indigenous youth through sport and education. In her work she strives to promote balanced life styles for Indigenous people living in two-worlds.
Born and raised in Northern Ontario, Qua is a former varsity athlete who studied at Algoma University. After moving to Toronto she found her home at Humber College. She holds two post-graduate certificates in Public Policy specializing in Indigenous Governance (Carleton University) and Sports & Event Marketing (George Brown College).
Gavin is a proud member of Saugeen First Nation and passionate about creating pathways to careers in the construction skilled trades. Currently Gavin is the Project Director for Pre-Apprenticeship and Construction Skilled Trades at the Labour Education Centre. With a combination of post-secondary, construction, and non-profit experience, Gavin has spent the last decade developing and facilitating training programs and building relationships within the construction industry. Working with both the Indigenous community and other marginalized groups in the GTA and across the Province, Gavin’s focus has always been on creating opportunity, careers and sustainability. Gavin was fortunate to have been employed with Miziwe Biik during the beginning of his career in construction training, and is looking forward to paying it back by supporting the organization through its Board of Directors.