Councilor Liza Charlo Sanspariel Pieper

Liza Charlo Sanspariel Pieper comes from a large traditional family background, born and raised in traditional cultural lifestyle in 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 Charlo Sanspariel who is still with us.   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 of her parents, grandparents and the elders, that has been carried on from our ancestors, that 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 30 years has been with the federal and territorial Government, the Dene Nation office and Native Communication Society office.  Her broad work experience, knowledge skills, experience, and years of educational training has benefited her in her leadership roles and responsibilities.  She has approximated 20 years or more of volunteer work, to help for improvement, educating, for the betterment of the health and wellbeing of our aboriginal community people, regional, territorial and national level.  She has received the Queen’s Jubilee Medal Award in 2002, in recognition for her role as community leadership and volunteer work.

She recently completed her term in December 2018, as President of Native Women’s Association of NWT (NWA), and Native Women’s Association of Canada (NWAC), and had also, served a term as President in 1999 to 2002 as well.  She also served as the Vice-President on NWA and NWAC, on Executive Committee and Board Member at the regional and national level during those terms.  She also, served a term on the board of the National Aboriginal Health Organization (NAHO), and, a term on NAHO, Governance Committee on behalf of the AFN and NWAC.

She has served three terms as a Band Councilor in previous years between 1992 to 2011.  She held several portfolios, justice, health, education and other project as required.  Very active community member, working with elders and youth drama theater activity gatherings, Dechita Naowo Research team and Giant Mine meetings, and many other gatherings.  She was the spokesperson at the Missing and Murdered women and girl’s national enquiry held in Yellowknife, an active member with Native Women’s Association of NWT and of Canada.  Today, she encourages young people, especially women and girls to further advance themselves in leadership.  Her life example teaches to hold no limits, to flourish in your vision as leaders.

She enjoys traditional gathering, drum dance and hand games, and spending quality time with family gatherings, cook out, outdoor activities and love knitting and sewing.