17. Chief Ian Campbell

Chief of the Squamish Nation

November 17, 2015

By Staff / Photo: Wayne Leidenfrost/Vancouver Sun

17-Background

Age: 42 | First Appearance

When Woodfibre LNG Ltd. wanted to build a facility in Howe Sound, it soon discovered that the B.C. government would not be the only political entity with which it would be dealing. The company would quickly learn that concerns of the Squamish Nation, under the dynamic leadership of Chief Ian Campbell, would also have to be satisfied. The First Nation released 25 conditions that Woodfibre LNG had to meet before it could proceed with the project on ancestral Squamish land.

Campbell, 42, has emerged as the new face of the Squamish Nation, following the defeat of Gibby Jacob in band elections in 2013. The band claims a vast territory from Whistler to downtown Vancouver. Under Campbell’s leadership, the band has begun expanding its business interests. Among other ventures, it is partnering with the Aquilini Group to develop the Willingdon Lands in Burnaby. The band—which has a population of 4,100, about 2,400 of whom live on reserve—declared revenues of $94 million last year, the most of any First Nation in the province. It derives lease dollars from the Park Royal Shopping Centre, among several other land holdings.

For his part, Campbell, who completed the aboriginal MBA program at Simon Fraser University, has become a strong advocate for the language and culture of his community— and a new political force in the province.

To see who else made 2015’s Power 50, click here >>

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