Board of Directors

SANDY SANDERSON
SANDY SANDERSONPresident
Sandy Sanderson is the founder of Askiy Mat Service Inc, an innovative entrance floor mat company in the oil sands region that has reduced Suncor/Syncrude’s carbon emission footprint by 586,763 lbs. of CO2 annually, which is equivalent to 299 passenger vehicles. A veteran leader, Sandy has served in senior management roles in Alberta’s post-secondary institutions, CEO of Indigenous corporations, and current President of NAABA. He is a member of Mikisew Cree First Nation and is on a lifelong journey to learn his culture and language which is important to his identity. As the world begins to rethink and recognize our Indigenous culture, rights and past, Sandy is an avid learner of liberating Indigenous Peoples and sharing his knowledge and experiences which couples his learnings at college and university.
MIKE DERANGER
MIKE DERANGER1st Vice President
Mike’s family is from the Athabasca Chipewyan First Nation, Mike is a first-generation business owner. His drive and initiative has built Derantech into a major force, providing mechanical services in a 100,000-square-foot facility in Nisku. He also runs an innovative and successful apprenticeship development program that has been adopted by companies as far away as Mongolia. Mike has served on numerous boards, including three years on the Canadian Apprenticeship Forum Board of Directors where he promoted Indigenous youth in trades across Canada. He is also the recipient of two awards from RARA as well as from Keyano College and, in 2016, from Alberta Industry Training as Top Employer of Indigenous people. Among other work on behalf of the Indigenous community in Canada and the U.S., Mike founded the Pathways Gathering, an Indigenous Youth for Trades Conference held in Edmonton to bring together local Indigenous companies, government bodies, educators and most importantly, Indigenous youth from across Canada.
TRAVIS DREW
TRAVIS DREWTreasurer
Travis Drew is a proud member of Miawpukek First Nation at Conne River. During his youth Travis was heavily involved in sports including basketball, volleyball and badminton, transforming into a love of squash and golf. Travis’ childhood experiences are the source of his deep passion for helping others and improving the world around him. Relocating to Fort McMurray in 2004, Travis soon became a Quality Assurance Specialist, acting in various inspection, advisory, and management roles. Throughout his career Travis has been intimately involved with dozens of complex projects, delivering innovative solutions to increase efficiency, profitability, and overall quality. Leveraging this diverse skill-set, in 2018 Travis joined Wright Quality Services as President and CEO, a company specializing in non-destructive testing, nurturing it from just 6 employees to over 100 by 2021. Travis is also Chairman of the Weaving Root Foundation, a non-profit dedicated to enhancing Indigenous wellness throughout Canada. In their personal time Travis and his wife love to cheer on their children at a multitude of sporting events across Alberta.
ANTHONY PUNKO
ANTHONY PUNKODirector
Anthony Punko was born in Fort Smith, NWT and has lived most of his years there alongside various small Indigenous communities in Northern Alberta. Anthony currently works as a firefighter and primary care paramedic with one of the oilsands companies for over 21 years. Anthony began his career pursuing work in the trades as a journeyman HET. He then left the trades to become an office manager with the FMFN; he then returned to the trades with Syncrude Canada Ltd. before becoming a full-time firefighter and PCP now with over 21 years of experience. Anthony has volunteered with numerous organizations such as minor hockey, minor baseball, Fort McMurray Army Cadets, the Winter and the Summer games, and as an Auxiliary with the RCMP. Most recently, he founded and continues to grow his company, Emergency Decon Solutions Ltd. Anthony strives to help new business owners overcome challenges in starting and growing their business, as well as helping current business in the region work together.
LEONA LEPINE
LEONA LEPINEDirector
Leona was born and raised in Fort Chipewyan. She is a member of the Mikisew Cree First Nation. She attended and graduated from Bishop Piche School in Fort Chipewyan. She also completed her Early Childhood Development Certificate and Aboriginal Entrepreneurship Certificate at the same time obtaining a Personal Achievement award on both. Leona worked with the Family and Community Support Services (FCSS) producing a local newspaper. She worked with Seniors as a Coordinator, with both FCSS and her band, Mikisew Cree First Nation. She also worked with children at Chip Child Development, as a Bus driver, Instructor and Director. For 23 years she submitted local community reports to CBC Radio in Yellowknife. While working her regular daytime jobs, she also started a janitorial company working with various companies in Fort Chipewyan including: Alberta Forestry, Canada Post, RCMP, MWB and the Northern.
ROBYN VILLEBRUN
ROBYN VILLEBRUNDirector
Robyn Villebrun is a local First Nation Female Entrepreneur of Treaty 8. She is the President of Medika North Inc. – a Northern Alberta Indigenous Health Service Company. The company was built on passion for Health and the care of the dynamic workforce here in Northern Alberta. Medika North’s services range from: supporting employers in occupational health testing, customized health projects such as Emergency Services, Pandemic Planning, Medical Clinic builds and Medical Staffing Solutions.
Robyn Villebrun an Athabasca Chipewyan First Nation Member and local to the RMWB is a Baccalaureate Degree Registered Nurse from the University of Alberta, and a Certified Occupational Health Nurse from MacEwan University. Robyn is from the communities of Fort Smith NWT & Fort Chipewyan, Alberta – currently residing in Fort McMurray Alberta. She is raising her two children – a 14-year-old daughter who is excelling in school and has been an honor roll student since elementary, and a 7-year-old son who is an avid hockey player.
Robyn is currently on the board with the Northern Lights Health Foundation, and a huge community supporter in supporting Fort McMurray’s only hospital – with yearly donations. She volunteers within the community and is a huge promoter for Indigenous education – her company recently donated $20,000.00 to Post-Secondary Education for local Indigenous Students.
Raised traditionally by her grandparents, Robyn comes with traditional values and aligning them with western values – she states this brings a sense of balance of who she is and how her company operates successfully.
ANGELA MAXSON
ANGELA MAXSONDirector
Angela Maxson, a proud member of the Mikisew Cree First Nation, is a remarkable individual who embodies the values of entrepreneurship, community involvement, and family dedication. Her journey as a second-generation First Nation entrepreneur and President of Creekline Inc., which she co-founded in 2013 alongside her father, Gilbert McDonald, is a testament to her vision and leadership.

As a second-generation entrepreneur, Angela has not only continued but also expanded upon her family’s legacy. Under her leadership, Creekline Inc. has grown into a thriving business, making a significant impact in the industry. Angela’s unwavering commitment to excellence and her deep respect for her cultural roots have been instrumental in driving the company’s success.

Angela is not only a successful businesswoman but also a loving mother of four daughters and a devoted wife. Her dedication to her family is at the core of her values, shaping her approach to both her personal and professional life.
Angela’s commitment to her community is evident through her active role on the executive board of SOS (Some Other Solutions). Her leadership and dedication to community betterment have been pivotal in advancing the organization’s mission and making a positive impact on the lives of community members.

Angela is a proud sponsor and ardent supporter of various initiatives, including the Alberta Native Hockey Provincials, FMMHA (Fort McMurray Minor Hockey Association), Indigenous athletes, the U16 boys’ basketball team Alberta in the North American Indigenous Games. Her belief in the power of sports as a vehicle for empowerment and community building is evident in her consistent involvement and support.

Angela Maxson’s passion lies in building a stronger community, fostering stronger families, and empowering the next generation. Her dedication to these causes is a driving force in her life, and she continues to work tirelessly to make a meaningful impact.

In summary, Angela Maxson is a dynamic leader, a devoted mother and wife, and a passionate advocate for her community, her family, and the future generations of Indigenous individuals. Her commitment to entrepreneurship, community engagement, and family values makes her an exceptional candidate for any role that seeks to create a positive impact on Indigenous businesses and communities as a board member for NAABA.

Board of Directors Opportunity

Help Support and Shape the Direction of NAABA – Join the Board of Directors

The Opportunity:

NAABA is governed by a Board of Directors. The Board consists of a minimum of (3) and no more than (9) Member Directors, each holding office for a term of three years.

Qualifications/Eligibility

  • Any individual seeking election must be present at the Annual General Meeting
  • To qualify as a Member Director a person shall:
    • Have attained 18 years of age
    • Be a shareholder, director, officer or employee of a Full Member and
    • Be a Member Representative
  • “Member Representative” is defined as an Aboriginal person who is a shareholder, director, officer or employee of a Full Member and is appointed by that Full Member to represent the Member for all purposes of NAABA including serving on the Board, voting as a proxy or attending meeting.
  • “Full Member” is defined as an Aboriginal Business, carrying on its business in the Wood Buffalo Region which meets the qualifications of membership as set out in the NAABA bylaws at Article 6 and has been approved by the Board as a Full Member

Participation Benefits

  • Share your knowledge, skills, and experience in business as a way of giving back to the local Indigenous business community.
  • Be a driving force in uniting the voices of Indigenous Business in the Fort McMurray-Wood Buffalo Region.
  • Level the economic playing field for Indigenous businesses through policy development and implementation
  • Contribute to a stronger Indigenous business presence in the region, supporting the capacity building of business, senior leaders, and employees.
  • Advocate for reconciliation specifically in the economic activities of our region.
  • Leverage your experience, knowledge and connections to grow and strengthen the network of businesses and individuals who support and honor Indigenous business.

Responsibilities

Subject to the provisions of the organization’s bylaws, the Administration, Management, Control of the Affairs, Property, Business and Finds of NAABA are vested in the Board.

Specific responsibilities of individual Board members include the following.

  1. Participate in and contribute to the decisions of the Board;
  2. Attend scheduled meetings, workshops, planning sessions and events;
  3. Be respectful of and actively support the processes and administration of Board meetings;
  4. Actively listen and bring forward those views and concerns of NAABA Board members and other stakeholders that directly relate to the objectives and goals of NAABA;
  5. Be familiar with Board policies and procedures, reports and meeting agendas in order to participate fully in Board business;
  6. Participate in the development and approval of NAABA’s Strategic Plan;
  7. Provide information to the public that creates a positive profile for NAABA and enables the public to connect with appropriate service areas and resources within NAABA; Communicate NAABA goals, objectives, initiatives, and decisions made by the Board, effectively to internal and external stakeholders with one united Board voice
  8. Act honestly and in good faith in the best interests of NAABA;
  9. Keep informed of the work and activities of NAABA and the Board and changes in the environment in which NAABA is operating;
  10. Understand NAABA’s current strengths and needs by offering constructive advice to address these for both short and long term solutions;
  11. Monitor and regularly assess NAABA’s performance to ensure that it reflects the vision, mission, values and beliefs of NAABA;
  12. To participate in Board training to ensure regular education of their roles and responsibilities
  13. To sit on a least one NAABA Standing Committee during the length of term

Skills/Knowledge/Experience

  • A willingness and desire to engage in and participate in regular Board Meetings, Committee Meetings and Governance Discussions
  • Governance experience or a desire to learn and understand the role of a Governance Board (Previous Board experience is an asset)
  • The ability to collaborate and bring people together
  • Problem solving and development of strategic plans to move the mission and vision of the organization forward
  • Creativity
  • Ability to communicate openly and willingly with staff and fellow Board members
  • Experience engaging in the Indigenous Business Community
  • Experience working in the Oilsands
  • A desire to ask questions and seek out answers/solutions