The Coastal First Nations
Art Sterritt is currently the Executive Director of the Coastal First Nations- Great Bear Initiative (CFN-GBI) in Vancouver, British Columbia. As Executive Director he provides leadership and vision to ensure the CFN achieves its goal of an ecologically and economically sustainable coast now known as the Great Bear Rainforest.
The CFN is an alliance of First Nations on British Columbia's North and Central Coast and Haida Gwaii working together to develop and implement regional conservation-based economic strategies in forestry, fisheries and tourism.
Art, a member of the Gitga’at First Nation, has more than 30 years of experience in the areas of Aboriginal Rights and Title, as well as self-government and community economic development.
During the course of his career Art has served and continues to serve in numerous capacities for First Nations organizations, non-governmental organizations, as well as with the federal government. Some include the World Wildlife Fund, Northern Native Fishing, BC Treaty Commission, BC Salmon Marketing Council, BC Indian Arts and Crafts Society and Gitanmaax School of Northwest Coast Indian Art.
Art was appointed to a two year term by the First Nations Summit as one of the founding Commissioners for the B.C. Treaty Commission, an independent and neutral body responsible for facilitating treaty negotiations between Canada, British Columbia and First Nations in B.C. The Summit, which is comprised of a majority of First Nations and Tribal Councils in B.C., provides a forum for First Nations in B.C. to address issues related to Treaty negotiations as well as other issues of common concern.
Art served as the founding chairperson and later first full-time president of the Tsimshian Tribal Council for five years. The tribal council served First Nations in BC and Southeast Alaska.
He later served as elected president of the North Coast Tribal Council, an alliance of Tsimshian, Nisga’a and Haida communities.
Art’s first love is his family which now includes 16 grandchildren.