The Treaty Commission's impartiality and ability to provide a balanced perspective is reflected in its composition and the way it makes decisions. Commissioners do not represent the Principals that appoint them, but instead act independently. Decisions require the support of one appointee of each of the Principals.

The First Nations Summit elects two commissioners and the federal and provincial governments appoint one each. The chief commissioner is appointed to a three-year term by agreement of the three parties. The four part-time commissioners serve two-year terms. In the absence of a chief commissioner, the four remaining commissioners unanimously agree to appoint one of them to act as chief commissioner.

To view their biographies, please click on the individual images of the commissioners.

Celeste Haldane
Acting Chief Commissioner

Celeste Haldane was elected Commissioner for a third two-year term by the First Nations Summit in February 2015. She is currently the Acting Chief Commissioner.

Celeste is a practising lawyer and holds an LL.M. in Constitutional Law from Osgoode Hall Law School [York University], and an LL.B. and B.A. both granted by the University of British Columbia. In fall 2015 she began her Doctorate at UBC in Anthropology & Law.

She is appointed by the Provincial Government to serve on the UBC Board of Governors and the Legal Services Society. Celeste is an active member of the Canadian Bar Association and the Indigenous Bar Association. She is a 2015 alumni of the Governor General's Canadian Leadership Conference.

Celeste is a member of the Sparrow family from Musqueam and is Tsimshian through Metlakatla. She currently serves on the Musqueam Intergovernmental Affairs Committee and the Housing & Capital Committee. Celeste is the proud mother of three and grandmother of one.

Jerry Lampert

Jerry Lampert was first appointed in December 2007 by the Government of Canada. His current term runs to February 2017, marking more than nine years as a Commissioner.

Lampert served for 15 years as President and Chief Executive Officer of the Business Council of British Columbia, where he was a vocal advocate for developing better business relationships with First Nations in British Columbia.

Prior to joining the Business Council, Lampert was a principal in a government relations/public affairs consulting firm offering strategic and tactical advice to private sector corporations in their dealings with governments. He has held many key political organization and advisory positions, including serving as Chief of Staff to two Premiers of British Columbia and managing two successful provincial election campaigns in British Columbia.

Tom Happynook

Tom Happynook was appointed in February 2015 by the Province of British Columbia to serve a two-year term. He is from Huu-ay-aht First Nations and is the Head Hereditary Whaling Chief.

Huu-ay-aht is one of the five communities that make up the Maa-nulth First Nations, which has been implementing their modern-day comprehensive treaty since April 1, 2011. Tom played a large role in the negotiations and implementation of Huu-ay-aht's treaty. He was elevated to Chief Treaty Negotiator with the mandate to bring the Huu-ay-aht Final Agreement to conclusion in July 2007. He then took on the role of Treaty Implementation Team Leader from June 2009 to March 2011 to ensure the Nation had a smooth transition to self-governance.

Tom was a firefighter for sixteen years, retiring in 1998 as a Deputy Platoon Chief [Captain]. He is married to Kathy Happynook, and together they have three children and four grandchildren.

Francis Frank

Francis Frank was elected as Commissioner by the First Nations Summit for a two-year term beginning in March 2015. He is from Tla-o-qui-aht First Nations on the west coast of Vancouver Island and is a trained social worker with a BSW from the University of Victoria.

Prior to joining the Treaty Commission, Francis served his Nation in a variety of roles, including as Chief Councilor for fourteen years, negotiator for ten years, and band manager for six years.

He has extensive experience in negotiations, and was directly involved in the negotiation of the first interim measures agreement, as well as the first incremental treaty agreement in British Columbia, successfully securing land and finances for his nation.


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