By Cindy Filipenko
Daniel Sailland has taken over the role of senior administrator for the Mt Currie Band. Before making the move, Sailland was living in London, England, working as a bid manager for large-scale business efficiencies.
“We did work for the National Health, National Security, government as well as private companies,” said Sailland.
The 31 year old holds a Bachelor of Social Psychology from the University of Victoria and an MBA from Warwick Business School in England. His MBA was an interactive education that combined theoretical study with travel and work in France, Italy and Germany.
Prior to moving to London to study, Sailland had worked for the government, in the area of youth and health initiatives, in his home province of Quebec.
Attending the military base school in Belle Cartier Village, a rural town of 2,000, non-First Nations’ Sailland befriended a First Nations kid whose dad was a F-18 pilot. The two boys started an enduring friendship, essentially “adopting” each other’s family.
“For 18 years we practically lived in each other’s homes. We’ve always considered each other family.”
Sailland speaks with an obvious fondness of his childhood, memories which no doubt factored in his decision to move to another Canadian small town.
“I have a three-month-old daughter. A few weeks after she was born I realized London was not the place I wanted to raise a child,” said Sailland. “It’s a great city if you have available evenings, want to take in arts and entertainment, but with regards to parenting it’s just my personal belief it’s not the best place.”
The best place for Sailland is one with clean air, mountains and the atmosphere a small community affords.
“In a small town people know you, you’re not just another guy in a suit.”
Reached on the second day in his new position, Sailland admits that it’s going to take a few weeks to get up to speed.
“At this point it’s about listening and hearing about where it is we want to be and how we’re going to get there.”
The new administrator is looking forward to the challenges of the job.
“I’m excited about helping the community to get more from what they have, helping with the organization of different processes, overseeing partnerships and the agreements that the Olympics will bring,” he said. “This is a remarkable place. There’s a lot going on for a small town. It’s by no stretch of the imagination the classic, quiet small town.”
And when he’s not behind the desk, he plans to take full advantage of the area’s spectacular natural environment.
“I love skiing, hockey and hiking. I also sail, but I’m willing to travel for that.”
Sailland replaces Sheldon Tetreault, who left in August to pursue a career with the National Centre for First Nations Governance.