Bob Dickson speaks to media about a report on First Nation students on June 20. Dickson will remain as Kluane First Nation’s chief for a second term after being acclaimed on Aug. 23. (Crystal Schick/Yukon News file)

Bob Dickson gets second term as Kluane First Nation chief

Bob Dickson acclaimed for second term

Kluane First Nation Chief Bob Dickson will remain chief for a second term after being acclaimed in the First Nation’s Aug. 23 vote for chief and council.

Elected to the two positions of councillors-at-large were Kathleen Johnson with 65 votes and incumbent Christabelle Carlick with 61 votes. Curtis Carlick had also sought a seat on council and received 48 votes.

Nominated to the role of youth councillor was Colesen Ford.

The position of elder’s councillor was not filled; though Dickson said in an Aug. 27 interview the spot will be filled in the coming weeks.

Dickson said his desire to see projects underway come to fruition made him want to serve another term as chief.

The new council has yet to meet and discuss its strategic plan which will set out priorities for the three-year term, but Dickson said he would like the First Nation to continue focusing on the building of a new water plant and the continued push for a school in Burwash Landing.

“We want to build our community,” he said, stressing the importance of a school in keeping families in the area.

Many move to Whitehorse or Haines Junction so their kids can attend school there. Once they move, it’s difficult to draw them back.

Along with the school, there’s other infrastructure projects Dickson envisions, which he believes could help build the capacity — a new administrative building and health centre in Burwash Landing for example.

“I want to see something happen here,” he said. “We need to build capacity in the community so we can keep our citizens.”

Dickson said language is an important focus for the First Nation as officials work towards developing its new language department aimed at preserving and revitalizing the Southern Tutchone language. Until now, language initiatives have come under the broader department of Lands, Resources and Heritage. The new department will specifically deal with language through learning programs and other initiatives. Among those are a plan that will see street signs in Southern Tutchone.

Contact Stephanie Waddell at stephanie.waddell@yukon-news.com

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