Board of Directors
The Rediscovery T'aalan Stl'ang program is a not-for-profit society, that has been in operation since 1978. An eight-member board of directors, which meets no less than twelve (12) times annually, oversees the RTS Director of Operations. RTS is solely funded through proposal writing and fundraising.
Adopted member (1996) of Gakyaal Kiigawaay Skedans Clan, given the name Xidgwang Jaad (Flying Woman). I had 4 children with Chief 7idansuu, all have participated in Rediscovery Camps. A lifetime of summers living on a small isolated island off the grid has taught me the importance of being connected to our family, history, the land, ocean, tides, and the weather. Our safety and survival depend on sharing this knowledge. Rediscovery at T’aalan Stl’ang facilitates learning to live a healthy life while connecting youth and families to Haida culture, and each other. Participants find themselves, their voices, learning yahguudang (respect), instilling awareness knowledge and confidence, consistency, dedication and enthusiasm, to grow into who they really are! I believe strong minds and strong bodies are the tools for the Haida future ahead. I am honoured to serve on the board for Rediscovery, the philosophy is so true to my heart.
Jim was born in 1952 in Dal Kaahlii, Masset, son of Joan (nee White) and Jim Hart Sr. Once discovering Haida art and his culture in the last year of high school, he became captivated and forever turned on. Jim coming from a long line of important carvers and Chiefs continues the legacy. He has received many different awards throughout his career as a Haida artist. Working in different mediums Jim carries on with great enthusiasm inspired by his ancestors and culture.
Since its inception in 1978 Rediscovery T'aalan Stl'ang has been a notably life-changing experience for all participants. It provides the opportunity to reconnect through cultural and community teachings. The goal is to continue Rediscovery T'alaan Stl'ang with all it has to offer for everyone.
Kiil dlayaas (Neena Hart)
Kiil dlayaas (Neena Hart), daughter of Kunkayungaas (Agnes Adams) is a new member of the Rediscovery Board. She earned a Bachelor of Commerce Degree from the University of Northern British Columbia in 2006 and worked for a large forestry company for 11 years in Prince George. In 2018, she and her
husband and children moved back to Haida Gwaii after 18 years away, and they are so happy to be home. Neena has worked for the Secretariat of the Haida Nation as the Finance Officer since 2018. Neena is married to Tahayghen (Michael Hart), and they have three children. When not working, Neena enjoys spending time with family, exploring Haida Gwaii, and crafting.
Laara Yaghujaanas holds a Masters Degree from Royal Roads University, was awarded the Royal Roads University Founders Award, has completed the Justice Institute Conflict Resolution and Negotiation course, is a CTT Certified Consultant (Level 2), a member of the Council of Native Development Officers (CANDO), a member of the New Relationship Trust Economic Development Support Team, an Advisor for the BC Indigenous Business Awards.
A key component of Laara’s work has been the purposeful planning to enhance the capacity, and self-determination of First Peoples, through community owned research and tools. Carden Consulting‚ indigenous methodology and approach has proven in strengthening the self-determination and development of First Nations and their organizations throughout BC.
Laanas (Tamara Davidson)
Tamara is a member of the Haida Nation and proudly serves as a Vancouver Regional Representative for the Council of the Haida Nation. She has worked in the federal public service for more than 25 years in the areas of land stewardship, strategic planning, community planning, visitor experience, and policy development, working with the Royal Canadian Mounted Police, Indigenous Services Canada, and Gwaii Haanas National Park Reserve, National Marine Reserve, and Haida Heritage Site.
Previously, Tamara served as the co-chair for the Haida Gwaii/QCI Land Use Planning Process on behalf of the Council of the Haida Nation. Through her work in planning and policy development, she developed strong facilitation skills and a collaborative approach to conflict resolution. Tamara served on various boards over the years such as the First Peoples Heritage, Language, and Culture Council; the First People’s Foundation; and the Haida Enterprise Corporation. Currently, she serves as Secretary of the Board for the Rediscovery Haida Gwaii Society. Tamara has also worked in property management for four years and managed more than 25 commercial/residential strata buildings in and around Vancouver.
Leslie was born and raised a cowgirl in Prince George, British Columbia before making her way out to Haida Gwaii as a student teacher in 1976. She fell in love with the islands and people immediately and stayed on, becoming a teacher at Tahayghen Elementary school in 1978. Leslie married was adopted into the Yahgu Laanas clan and had two beautiful Haida Children. She continued working at Tahayghen until 1999 when she became principal of Chief Matthews elementary school in Old Massett, until her retirement in 2019. Her entire career has been dedicated to nurturing and educating the youth of Haida Gwaii. Leslie was instrumental in arranging for Chief Matthew's students and families to experience the magic of T’aalan Stl’ang bi-annually. In retirement, Leslie's passion for the T’aalan Stl’ang program and our children has drawn her to work for the board.
Carrie Anne Vanderhoop
Carrie Anne is Haida of Old Massett, Haida Gwaii. She belongs to the Gawa Git’ans, Massett Inlet Eagle clan. She is a weaver of Raven’s Tail and Naaxiin (Chilkat) northwest coast textiles. Her father is Aquinnah Wampanoag from Noepe (Martha’s Vineyard) Massachusetts. She is a mother, aunty, weaver and educator. Carrie Anne is currently the Indigenous and Community Initiatives Manager at the Haida Gwaii Institute. Previously, she worked as the Curriculum Manager at the Centre for Excellence in Indigenous Health leading the development of the UBC 23 23 Indigenous Cultural Safety learning experience, which is required learning for students in 12 UBC
health science programs. She also serves on the Aboriginal Steering Committee at the UBC Human Early Learning Partnership (HELP), the Board of Directors of the Society for Children and Youth of BC (SCY) and the Board of Directors of the Rediscovery Taalan St’lang, Haida Gwaii Society.
Carrie Anne has over 20 years of experience in teaching and education. She earned her BA from the University of Massachusetts, Amherst where she student Comparative Literature and Sociology, and her Med from Harvard University.
I was born in Daajing Giids, and have lived down the south end close to Dead Tree Point for my whole life. I started attending Rediscovery from when I was 10 until I was too old, and then I went as a volunteer which lasted about 3 days so I stayed the whole summer as a Junior Guide. I moved up through Senior Guide to Camp Supervisor: 8 years as a participant and 12 years as a staff. I was attending university off-island during that whole time and returning in the summers to work. I have also worked as support staff for several groups attending ‘Laanas Dagang. a, and a canoe journey in Gwaii Haanas.
I love T’aalan Stl’ang with my whole heart and being able to be there and work with youth has been one of the most amazing experiences in my life. Many of the connections I have made with people at Rediscovery are still strong today.
My “formal” educational background includes a Bachelor’s of Disability Studies & Community Rehabilitation (2007) and a Master’s in Science in Physiotherapy (2012). I have worked with I returned home to work at Xaada Gwaay Ngaaysdll Naay as a Physiotherapist in 2017. I appreciate this opportunity to be on the Board of Directors and I am looking forward to helping maintain the youth programming and I hope to be a part of creating different opportunities for people to go to T’aalan Stl’ang in the future.