At Simon Fraser University, we live and work on the unceded traditional territories of the Coast Salish peoples of the xʷməθkwəy̓əm (Musqueam), Skwxwú7mesh (Squamish), and Səl̓ílwətaɬ (Tsleil-Waututh) Nations.

Council Member Biographies

SFU-ARC Co-chairs

Chris Lewis — Syeta’xtn

In 2013, Chris was elected to his second four-year term as a member of the Squamish Nation Chiefs and Council, after five years of working at the national and provincial level for the Assembly of First Nations.  Syeya’xtn is currently focusing on Squamish Nation Governance and Constitution building; fisheries and access to our aquatic resources; and sports and recreation.

Chris was encouraged by his family to learn the traditional ways of the land and pursue an academic education. He was fortunate to learn from his family and also from the greater community and elders. Chris was taught to be respectful of traditional lands and honour the interconnectedness between the Squamish people and all things on the land. He upholds these teachings – each generation is entrusted with the responsibility of being land stewards, ensuring that all our resources are used in a sustainable and respectful way.

Kris Magnusson

Kris Magnusson is currently the Dean of the Faculty of Education at SFU. Prior to this appointment in August 2009, he was the Associate VP-Academic at the University of Lethbridge, joining the Faculty of Education there in July 1998. Previous to his position in Lethbridge, he served as professor of Counselling Psychology at the University of Calgary. He has been involved in a variety of educational settings, including teaching Junior High School in Saskatchewan, and working as a counsellor in colleges and technical institutes such as Keyano College, Northern Alberta Institute of Technology, and Wascana Institute. He was the recipient of the Stu Conger Award for Leadership in Career Development (national award). His primary interests are in the areas of counselling psychology, career development and organizational planning and renewal.

SFU-ARC Council

Ron Johnston

Ron Johnston, who is a member of the Squamish Nation and is an SFU alumnus, is currently serving as the Director of the Office of Indigenous Education in the Faculty of Education at Simon Fraser University (2012-present). His career as an Aboriginal educator spans two decades and through his work he has come to realize that education is a change agent that supports transformative change and empowerment for Aboriginal People. Prior to working at SFU Ron has worked as an Education Advisor for the BC Region for Aboriginal Affairs and Northern Development Canada (2011-2012), Director of Aboriginal Education and Services at Vancouver Community College (2005-2010) and as an Aboriginal Trades Training Coordinator and Consultant (2000-2005) for the BC Government and various Aboriginal communities and organizations. 

Elder Margaret George

Margaret George was born in Skawahlook First Nation and raised in Ruby Creek by her grandparents. She attended school on her reserve and graduated from UBC. She has been involved with all sorts of events and activities within her own community and schools in Vancouver. Margaret loves to share her wisdom and introduces her culture with others. She enjoys her life with family, friends, and community.

William G. Lindsay

William G. Lindsay is of Cree-Stoney heritage. Although his ancestors are from the Great Plains of Canada, he has grown up in British Columbia for most of his life in both rural and urban First Nations communities. William has attained Bachelor of Education and Master of Arts degrees from the University of British Columbia. His B.Ed. was completed in the Native Indian Teacher Education Program and his master’s thesis in History studied “A History of the Vancouver Aboriginal Friendship Centre in an Age of Aboriginal Migration and Urbanization.” He also completed three years of doctoral work at UBC in Educational Studies. William is currently a doctoral student in the Faculty of Education at Simon Fraser University. William has worked for many years as an Indigenous teacher, professor, student services provider, and senior administrator, at numerous Lower Mainland colleges and universities, including the Native Education College, the Institute for Indigenous Government (now the Nicola Valley Institute of Technology, Burnaby campus), Douglas College, the University of British Columbia, and Simon Fraser University. William currently serves as the Director of the Office for Aboriginal Peoples at SFU, working out of the Office of the Vice President, Academic. He is also a published writer, with a TESOL textbook, a plethora of newspaper essays, and numerous academic papers and book reviews to his credit. William has also been the editor of two university newsletter/magazines and is the current publisher of the SFU News, Aboriginal Edition. William also has much experience dealing with local, provincial, and national media concerning Aboriginal issues.

Kyle Bobiwash

Kyle Bobiwash is Anishinaabe from Mississauga First Nation in Northern Ontario. He earned a B.Sc. from the University of Ottawa in Biomedical Science in 2008, and then moved on to study Oenology and Viticulture at the Cool Climate Oenology and Viticulture Institute at Brock University. In 2012, he successfully defended his M.Sc. in the Biology Department of McGill University under the direction of Dr. Dan Schoen where he aimed to understand the contribution of wild and managed pollinators, as well as the role of evolutionary genetics in lowbush blueberry yield. Currently he is working on his PhD under the supervision of Dr. Elizabeth Elle in the Department of Biology at Simon Fraser University. His current project involves working on the USDA funded Integrated Crop Pollination project alongside international collaborators to better understand crop pollination. Prior to arriving at SFU, Kyle worked as a research and policy analyst within different branches of Health Canada's First Nation and Inuit Health Branch analyzing the delivery of the Aboriginal Diabetes Initiative and community health delivery models in First Nations. Kyle is active in the SFU community being Co-chair of the Biology Graduate Student Caucus and a member of the First Nation Student Association. He also frequently participates in outreach events aimed at encouraging greater appreciation, participation and use of science among aboriginal communities, organizations and youth.


Sheryl Thompson

Sheryl Thompson is Cree-Metis; her family comes from the Michel First Nation in central Alberta and she was born and raised in Vancouver. She is a mother and wife and is active in her community as a volunteer, role model, and activist.

Since joining the SFU community 3 years ago she actively facilitates, participates. and advocates for Indigenous voices at the university. She engages local Indigenous youth at SFU through her role as Camp Coordinator for the Aboriginal Academic Summer Camp. She is an active member of the First Nations Student Association and participates in community building with the Indigenous Student Centre. She promotes the Aboriginal University Transition Program as a viable entry-point to SFU and at the governance level Sheryl has begun her second appointment to SFU’s Aboriginal Steering Committee; a body which oversees the implementation of SFU’s Aboriginal Strategic Plan.

Sheryl is currently in her 3rd year Health Science BA-Hons with a minor in First Nations Studies. She is a research assistant for Dr. Kelley Lee’s Global Tobacco Control Project helping to examine the policies and mechanisms employed and exploited by tobacco companies. Her work allows her to explore her interest in health policy, its development, implementation, and effects. She has co-authored several peer-reviewed articles and her work is featured at SFU and in the media. Her current area of study examines the knowledge production relating to illicit tobacco in Canada.

Eldon Yellowhorn

Chair, First Nations Studies Program

Dean Mellow

Associate Professor, Department of Linguistics

Aoife Mac Namara

Dean, Faculty of Communication, Art and Technology

Marcia Guno

Director, Indigenous Student Centre

Joanne Curry

Vice-President, External Relations

Susan Rhodes

Director, University Curriculum and Institutional Liaison