Press Release (2)

Winners of the Qalipu First Nation/Marathon Gold 2023 Scholarships

Qalipu First Nation and Marathon Gold are pleased to announce the winners of the first round of scholarships introduced last year to encourage and support Qalipu band members with career development and growth as they attend post-secondary education.  Five scholarships, valued at $1,000.00 each, will be presented annually over the next 5 years.

Please join us in congratulating Kaylee White, Tanner Wells, Chelsea Beaton, Matthew Antle and Anna Brake, winners of this year’s scholarships.  Each of these students demonstrates the attributes and qualities upon which this scholarship was based, academic excellence, community service and extracurricular involvement.

Qalipu Chief Brendan Mitchell noted that the promotion of educational pursuits is one of the top priorities for the Band.

“We fund hundreds of band members each year through our education programs and value every opportunity to see our people pursue an education and find success.  This scholarship, founded in partnership with Marathon Gold, greatly supports students.  We are proud of the accomplishments of this year’s winners.”

Matt Manson, President & CEO of Marathon Gold commented:  “Marathon Gold is pleased to be able to partner with Qalipu First Nation in establishing this important scholarship program. We recognize the challenges and the rewards that come with furthering one’s education and would like to acknowledge the hard work, community involvement and academic achievements of the five scholarship recipients.  We wish them all much success in their future endeavours.”

Congratulations to all!


Press Release (2)

Clarification Regarding Rebrand of the Cultural Foundation

Qalipu’s Cultural Foundation was launched in February 2014 to support Band members in connecting with and discovering their Mi’kmaw culture. To ensure success, the Band assigned staff to support the day-to-day operations of the Foundation, committed funds and other resources, and appointed a member of the Council to serve on the Board of Directors. Partnership and collaboration were essential for the operation of this arms-length Cultural Foundation.

In 2021, after years of working together on fundraising, hosting events, and supporting Mi’kmaw culture together, the Foundation dismissed Qalipu staff from their team. Although actively recruiting individuals to fill vacancies on their board, they failed to accept Qalipu Council’s proposed representative to their Board table. Council became further concerned when the Cultural Foundation changed their bylaws on three occasions to remove any governance or oversight by Qalipu First Nation related to the operation of the Cultural Foundation.

It became clear that the Foundation intended to move forward without the Qalipu Band when they sent a letter to Chief and Council outlining their desire to separate from the First Nation, and for the freedom to move forward with a pan-Indigenous approach not tied solely to supporting Band members.

The Chairperson of the Foundation wrote:

“As a result, we have decided to proceed with the original intent to follow through with QCF as the proponent organization and build our proposal in pursuit of the cross-cultural project. We will seek partnerships with QFN, and other potential funding sources including other Indigenous groups in the province.


We respect and are extremely thankful for all of the support that has been given to us from QFN over the past several years. However, I have been given clear direction that the current board wishes to remain a separate entity, and that in doing so, we need to take the actions stated above in order to grow a level whereby we can achieve the independence that QCF was intended for.”

Qalipu First Nation was saddened to see this once positive relationship change significantly but has supported the Cultural Foundation in moving forward in the direction it envisioned. However, in consideration of the fact that using the name “Qalipu” implied some affiliation or relationship, confusing Band members, funders, government, and other stakeholders, it became necessary that the Band direct the Cultural Foundation to cease using “Qalipu” in its name.

To that end, a motion from Qalipu First Nation Council was passed, and a letter sent directing the Foundation to remove the “Qalipu” from its name. The Foundation announced its rebrand on March 10th, 2023. It will now be known as the Mi’kmaq Cultural Foundation.

During this transition time, we would like Qalipu First Nation members to know that we maintain our commitment to the preservation and promotion of our Mi’kmaq history, language, culture, and heritage. We will continue to host cultural workshops, and find ways to move forward in support of groups and organizations who also share this vision.

Qalipu First Nation wishes the Mi’kmaq Cultural Foundation well with their endeavours and remain open to opportunities for collaboration.

Press Release (2)

Qalipu First Nation Welcomes New Band Manager, Charles Pender

CornerBrookCityCouncil20215-Qalipu First Nation is pleased to announce the selection of its new Band Manager, Charles Pender, who will begin working with the Band on Monday, February 27th, 2023. Reporting to Chief and Council, Charles will be responsible for oversight and management of Band business and programs, including the management of Qalipu staff at six office locations.

Band Chief Brendan Mitchell was pleased to see the search for a Band Manager conclude with the selection of a strong candidate.

“We had an independent party complete the initial applicant screening process and preliminary interviews before making their recommendations to the Executive Council. Following this process, I’m pleased that Charles Pender was the chosen candidate. Charles is a lifelong resident of Corner Brook and a strong presence in the community. He has been a leader in the field of education, an active volunteer and twice served terms as the Mayor of the City of Corner Brook. I am confident in his ability to lead our Band in a positive direction.”

Charles graduated from Memorial University of Newfoundland (MUN) with a Bachelor of Arts and a Bachelor of Education and from Laval University with a Master’s in Education. He taught at schools around the province before becoming a Director at Grenfell Campus, MUN. Charles has also been a public administrator since 1997. He was twice elected as Mayor of the City of Corner Brook and has served three additional terms on Council.

Charles’ education, work experience and volunteer service have led to strong skills in the areas of change management, project development, negotiation, budgeting, human resources, funding proposals, and social media. He is excited to share his skills working on behalf of band members.

“As a proud member of the Qalipu First Nation, I’m very pleased to accept the position of Band Manager. I am looking forward to working with the Chief, Council, and staff on behalf of all band members.”