UBCIC Remembers and Honours George Saddleman

News Release
November 5, 2019

UBCIC Remembers and Honours George Saddleman

((Xʷməθkʷəy̓əm (Musqueam), Sḵwx̱wú7mesh (Squamish) and səl̓ilwətaʔɬ/sel̓ílwitulh (Tsleil-Waututh)/Vancouver, B.C. – November 5, 2019) It is with great sorrow and loss that the Union of BC Indian Chiefs (UBCIC) received the news that our dear friend and Elders Representative, George Saddleman, Upper Nicola Indian Band, passed away. We would like to convey our deepest condolences to his family members, friends, and loved ones.

Over the course of his life, George touched the hearts of those around him with his omnipresent warmth and good cheer. Coming from a third-generation rodeo family in the Okanagan, George was heavily involved in leatherwork and rodeo promotion across North America. In 1970, he came to Vancouver to work at the accounting department of UBCIC where he promptly established himself as a resourceful and hardworking member of the organization. In 1972 he was elected as a council member for the Upper Nicola Indian Band; for over three decades, he served his community and tribal council, working tirelessly to improve the quality of life and cultural integrity of First Nations in British Columbia.

Grand Chief Stewart Phillip, UBCIC President, stated, “UBCIC is indebted to George for the work and passion he invested into advancing our mandate and vision since the early days of our establishment. In particular, we would like to recognize and honour George’s invaluable role as UBCIC’s Elders Representative. Deeply compassionate and concerned for the welfare of others, George worked tirelessly on UBCIC’s Working Group on Preventing Elder Abuse to raise awareness of Elder Abuse and create culturally appropriate resources and solutions.”

“George Saddleman’s work at UBCIC and in his community is a testament to his generous and selfless soul,” stated Chief Don Tom, UBCIC Vice-President. “We honour his passion for representing and safeguarding Indigenous peoples and rights, and we will continue to be inspired by his dedication to establish a world in which our people can thrive with our values and rights intact.”

Kukpi7 Judy Wilson, UBCIC Secretary-Treasurer, concluded “The UBCIC holds up our hands to George Saddleman for his years of advancing Indigenous Title and Rights, and for coming to our table with humour, kindness and purpose.  We reflect on the leadership George provided to the organization. George’s legacy will live on at our Chiefs Council meetings and we will continue our work in honour of him and our other steadfast leaders who laid the foundation for UBCIC.”

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Media inquiries:
Grand Chief Stewart Phillip, President of UBCIC: (250-490-5314)
Chief Don Tom, Vice-President of UBCIC: (604-290-6083)
Kukpi7 Judy Wilson, Secretary-Treasurer of UBCIC: (250-320-7738)

UBCIC is an NGO in Special Consultative Status with the Economic and Social Council of the United Nations.

For more information please visit www.ubcic.bc.ca

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