Council Secretariat/Legal Counsel
An Opportunity to Make a Difference!
Located in south central British Columbia, Canada, the Okanagan Valley is home to Westbank First Nation, one of seven native communities that belong to the Okanagan Nation. The Okanagan (syilx) traditional territories extend from the south central interior of B.C. to north central Washington State. The syilx are a division of the Interior Salish and speak the nsyilxcən language. They have inhabited the valley for thousands of years.
Westbank First Nation is comprised of five reserves totaling 5,306 acres. Tsinstikeptum Reserves 9 and 10 border Okanagan Lake and are in close proximity to the City of Kelowna, one of the fastest growing cities in British Columbia. Recently awarded as the “#1 Place to do Business” in the Pacific Region of North America by a KPMG study, Kelowna ranked first among 121 comparable size cities from 11 countries.
The Westbank First Nation is searching for a Council Secretariat/Legal Counsel (CS/LC), who is sensitive to the unique identity of the Westbank First Nation and the challenges and opportunities of this organization.The CS/LC will report to Chief and Council (5 members) and the CAO/Director of Operations and supervise the Legal Services Department staff which includes 6 staff/2 direct reports
- Oversee the preparation of agendas and attend regular and in-camera Chief and Council meetings
- Provide procedural advise
- Review all freedom of information requests to determine if the information is appropriate for release
- Oversees the preparation of notices for membership meetings and development of laws
- Acts as the WFN Commissioner for taking oaths and affidavits
- Attend and provide legal advice for membership meetings
- Advise on related WFN Government and business issues
- Reviews employment, contractor and other business related agreements
- Minimize WFN’s legal exposure – take the lead on WFN risk management initiatives
- Negotiate, draft and review project-based agreements and initiatives
- Responsible for insurance and litigation claims on behalf of WFN
- Negotiates with federal and provincial governments regarding self-government implementation initiatives
- Liaises with outside counsel
- Researches and drafts laws, policies, and procedures
- Explains and or interprets WFN Laws, procedures and policies
- Maintains WFN Laws and the Registry of Laws and makes legal documents available to the membership
- Initiates and oversees the electoral and referendum processes to ensure the Electoral Officers conduct the process in accordance with the constitution
- Eligible for membership in the Law Society of British Columbia
- Minimum of 5 years’ experience in a legal, local government or corporate setting
- Experience with Aboriginal law, First Nation self-governance, history, culture and community
- Strong personal and leadership skills and experience
- Cultural competency and knowledge of First Nation cultural traditions and practices
- Project management methods and skills to lead or manage projects
- Highly effective interpersonal communication skills
- Ability to interpret and apply policies and procedures
- Demonstrated leadership qualities; ability to influence others with respect to legal issues. Ability to influence others regarding WFN policies, standards and procedures.
- Demonstrated negotiation, dispute and conflict resolution skills
- Strong computer skills
- Skill in the use of computer software and hardware, and other communications equipment
- Availability to work evenings, weekends and overtime as required by business needs; may require occasional overnight travel
- Valid BC Driver’s License and acceptable driving record
Criminal Record Check
People First Solutions is one of Vancouver’s leading professional recruitment firms, dedicated to recruiting top talent.
If you possess the fundamental skills, experience and education required to be successful in this role then we invite to provide a cover letter and résumé in confidence to Michael O’Brien or Bob Murray.
Michael O’Brien e: firstname.lastname@example.org
Bob Murray e: email@example.com