Chief Executive Officer, Nacho Nyak Dun Development Corporation
I am the child of Serbian immigrants that relocated to Canada in order to give their children more opportunities than they had. I owe so much of my success to the First Nation of Na-cho Nyak Dun, who have welcomed me into their home and have allowed me to be a guest on their Traditional Territory – they have provided me with warmth, kindness, somewhere to call home, and a meaningful living.
I spend most of my time on the Traditional Territories of the Kwanlin Dun First Nation and Ta’an Kwach’an Council, as my home and work location is in Whitehorse, Yukon.
My relationship with the Arctic actually began when I took on a student exchange placement in Tromsø and then Copenhagen, where I focused on International Indigenous Law and Conflict Studies. I took a small “detour” to Guatemala where I worked with Mayan cacao farmers as a chocolate maker, but soon after returned to Canada and relocated to the Yukon to complete my Masters studies. Through my Masters of Environmental Studies, I conducted graduate research with Kluane First Nation and the Kluane Community Development LP on the links between long-term community planning and the ability to successfully create self-determined micro-economies within predominantly resource-extractive economies
Since moving to the Yukon 6 years ago, I have been working at the Nacho Nyak Dun Development Corporation (NNDDC), which is the active business arm of the First Nation of Na-cho Nyak Dun – I first began as an Office Manager, was quickly promoted to Chief Operating Officer, and have been the Chief Executive Officer since November 2019. It has been my strategic direction at NNDDC to position the company as a leader in the green economy, energy sovereignty, and food sovereignty, with Indigenous Nations, Peoples, and companies holding meaningful equity in these projects and initiatives.‹‹ Go Back