Councilor Liza Charlo Sanspariel Pieper

Liza Charlo Sanspariel Pieper comes from a large traditional family background, born and raised in a traditional cultural lifestyle in the Tahdehcho/Wool Bay Yellowknife area, a Treaty Status member with the Yellowknives Dene First Nation, within the Chief Drygeese traditional territory.

Her parents are the late Joe Charlo Sanspariel Tawatsi, and her mother is Judith (Betsina) Charlo Sanspariel. Her grandparents are John Baptiste and Marie Charlo Sanspariel from her father’s side of the family and Jimmy and Saraphine Betsina from her mother’s side of the family.

It was her late father who had taught the spiritual traditional drum dance songs, which is still going strong to this day. It is those teachings, the words and wisdom…the beliefs and values of her parents, grandparents, and the elders, who has been continued from our ancestors, which has helped her and her people to survive to this day. Those teachings must continue for the younger generation…As long as the sun shines, the river flows the grass grows… those beliefs and values will forever live within us.

Her career of employment for 32 years has been with the federal and territorial Government, the Dene Nation office, and Native Communication Society office. Her background work experience, years of educational training, elders teachings and traditional cultural life skills, has enabled her to advance into elected or appointed leadership positions for the past approximate 30 years, being the voice and representing the rights and interest of our aboriginal Dene First Nation people of the NWT, at the regional, territorial and national level.  She received the Queen’s Jubilee Medal Award in 2002, in recognition of her hard work and dedication as a community leader and for her contribution of community volunteer work.

She has served two terms for a number of years, as elected President of Native Women’s Association of NWT (NWA), and Vice-President of Native Women’s Association of Canada (NWAC), and on Executive Committee and Board member of NWA and NWAC at the national level. She also served a term at the national level on the board of the National Aboriginal Health Organization (NAHO), and on NAHO Governance Committee on behalf of the AFN and NWAC. She has served approximately 30 years in elected or appointed positions and has served as a Board Member on various other organizations and committees.

She is an active and committed leader, with years of leadership experience with different organizations, sees the importance to protect the Treaty Rights and entitlement of our YKDFN people.

She enjoys traditional gatherings, drum dance and hand games, and spending quality time with family gatherings, cooking out, outdoor cultural activities and enjoys knitting sewing craft group gatherings.