Jessie Hemphill (Tlali'ila'ogwala, or "Bridge Between the Worlds") is from the 'Nakwaxda'xw, Ligwitlda'xw and Métis nations. Jessie was raised in rural Port Hardy, BC, on the northern tip of Vancouver Island. Her love for her community led her to a career in community planning and facilitation, working with First Nations and organizations all over Canada through her company, Alderhill Planning Inc. It also led her to a seat on Port Hardy's town council, where she was first elected in 2011 (and again in 2014) as the youngest woman in Port Hardy's history, and the first person from a local First Nation. She has a Master of Community Planning degree from Vancouver Island University in Nanaimo, where she is also an adjunct instructor. A life-long volunteer with an equity focus, Jessie currently sits on the Girls' Fund advisory committee for the Canadian Women's Foundation, co-founded the Young Elected Officials Network and the British Columbia Comprehensive Community Planning Mentorship Program, and served on the board of directors for the 'Kawatsi Economic Development Corporation. She was also a member of the Canadian Institute of Planners' Indigenous Community Planning Committee, and the Indigenous Advisory Group for the Indigenous Community Development National Strategy. In 2018 she received the Canadian Institute of Planners President's Award for Young Planners as well as the Governor General's Academic Gold Medal. In 2021 she was the keynote speaker for the Planning Institute of BC's Annual Conference, and in 2022 her company won the BC Business Award for Indigenous Prosperity. Jessie currently lives in Snuneymuxw territory with her husband and daughter.
Research and Specialties
- Indigenous Planning