Dawn Madahbee Leach
Business and Commerce (2020)
Aundeck Omni Kaning First Nation, ON
“Supporting the advancement of Indigenous people in the fields of business, finance and economic development is one of the most effective ways to build our capacity to secure the future of our people, our lands, and our rightful place in Canada’s economy.”
For over thirty years, entrepreneur and business leader Dawn Madahbee Leach has been fiercely committed to Indigenous economic development. The first Indigenous woman in Canada to helm a regional lending institution, Dawn has served as the General Manager of the Waubetek Business Development Corporation since 1988. She has overseen millions of dollars of investments in Indigenous businesses, helping to build both First Nations and region-wide economies. She has given voice to Indigenous economic needs nationally through her roles on numerous governmental advisory committees and on boards such as the National Indigenous Economic Development board (Vice-Chair), and through her position as a director with Peace Hills Trust and Niobay Metals Inc.
An ardent advocate of reciprocity, Dawn has also been a Councillor for her home community of Aundeck Omni Kaning First Nation. She champions Indigenous economic initiatives globally through forums in Switzerland, Sweden, Germany, France, Australia, the USA, and New Zealand.