BearPaw staff are grateful to live, work and share our resources across Treaty 6, 7 and 8. We are a dedicated team that strives to make legal information accessible to Indigenous communities across the province. Please contact any of us if you need help or have suggestions for how we can continue to create resources that are right for you.
Chancy Black Water
/ Community Engagement Coordinator
Chancy Black Water, Awakasi’ikitstakiaki (Deer Offering Woman), is a Blackfoot woman from the Blood Tribe, and a member of the Mamioyiiksi (Fish Eaters Clan).
Chancy has a Bachelor of Arts Degree from the University of Alberta. She feels blessed for her 10+ years of work with Indigenous people across Alberta. Chancy contributed many years to the Blood Tribe in the role of Crime Prevention Coordinator by facilitating prevention education for children and youth, Elders and community members. She created programming and initiatives for Indigenous youth and families as a co-chair of the Kainai Youth Empowerment Committee and most recently with the Edmonton Public Schools as an Indigenous Cultural Liaison. As BearPaw’s Community Engagement Coordinator, Chancy aims to build capacity in partnerships and prioritizes disseminating legal education content created for Indigenous people by Indigenous people.
/ Public Legal Education Facilitator
Nadine Callihoo-Hansen is a Métis woman from Hinton, Alberta. She is a trained social worker who has worked primarily with Indigenous communities. At the beginning of her career, Nadine worked for the Hinton Friendship Centre and Women’s Shelter and became a courtworker with Native Counselling Services of Alberta in 1997. For ten years, Nadine assisted Indigenous people through criminal, youth and family court as well as the child welfare system. Since 2006, Nadine has been both online and on the road, travelling across the province, delivering over 100+ workshops a year to Indigenous communities, and developing plain-language legal education workshops that are relevant to Indigenous people.
/ Legal Education Media Producer
Lese Skidmore is a First Nations woman of Anishinaabe and German decent. At the heart of her 20-year media career is a deep sense of care for Indigenous people, knowledges, cultures and rights. Lese strives towards social justice by creating media to guide Indigenous people towards asserting their agency, and knowledge about their rights, as they navigate oppressive systems. She is graduate of Native Communications and Digital Arts and Media program at Grant MacEwan University. For the last twenty years, Lese has been an editor, producer, director and graphic designer at BearPaw Media and Education. She is currently the Legal Education Media Producer. Lese has directed and produced documentaries, docu-dramas, short dramas and animations. Recently (Re)claiming Indian Status, produced by Lese, won the CTV Audience Choice Award for Documentary Short and received Special Mention as Best Alberta Documentary Short at the 2020 Calgary International Film Festival. In 2014, Lese and her co-producers/co-writers won Best Comedy and Best Writing for Just Cause 2 at the Alberta Film and Television Awards. Her work has also been nominated and screened at Alberta Film and Television Awards, Dreamspeakers Film Festival, Yorkton Film Festival and American Indian Film Festival.
/ Digital Media Coordinator
Ryan Janvier is a graphic designer and web developer with over 15 years of experience working with Indigenous organizations and First Nation communities throughout Canada and the United States. He is a member of the Chipewyan Prairie Dene First Nation with strong ties to his Dene culture and heritage. Ryan’s primary focus is leveraging technology to further accelerate the growth and impact of Indigenous organizations and First Nation communities across Turtle Island.
Dr. Daena Crosby
/ Director of Legal Education, Media and Research
Dr. Daena Crosby uses her skills as an academic, researcher, and writer in combination with a natural love for humanity and an intrinsic desire to see individuals and communities express their highest integrity, creativity and health. The synergy between Dr. Crosby’s community ethic and her academic background has propelled her into an extensive career in the non-profit sector working with Indigenous communities for over 10 years. She is motivated by a desire to create what she calls healthy “relational environments.” Dr. Crosby believes that relationship-building, both on the personal and communal levels, must account for the different ways in which we form relationships to self, others, and the physical spaces we navigate each day.
Dr. Crosby has a PhD in Sociology from the University of Alberta. She joined BearPaw Media and Education as the Director in 2019. Daena counts it an honour to work with the talented and dedicated team at NCSA. She aims to continue BearPaw’s legacy and to grow the department by continuing to root BearPaw in NCSA’s Resiliency Model and the contributions of Senator Patti LaBoucane-Benson.