To the Squamish Nation, Glen Newman is known as the mediator.
Since 1981, Newman has been elected as the Squamish band manager 12 times. He's served on the nation's council for 20 years and held the title of band community development worker for nine years.
But perhaps most importantly, Newman serves as an ombudsman and problem solver for Squamish members and families, officials said in a statement. Last Tuesday, Jan. 22, at the Chief Joe Mathias Centre in West Vancouver, 100 people came out to watch Newman receive the Queen's Diamond Jubilee Medal - an award that recognizes significant contributions and achievements by Canadians.
"I am humbled and honoured to receive this award on behalf of Squamish Nation membership," Newman stated.
As band manager, Newman serves as a voice for nation members and facilitates communication with chiefs, council and Squamish Nation department heads. His work covers everything from education to finding alternative housing solutions and seeking out economic development opportunities.
"[The medal] encourages me to work harder and, hopefully, I will be able to contribute more to the Squamish Nation," Newman stated.
Chief Gibby Jacob also received a jubilee medal. Jacob has been an elected councillor since 1981. He is the nation's chief negotiator for treaty, government-to-government discussions, forestry, land use management and on- and off-reserve development.
"I am honoured because it was totally unexpected," Jacob said of the award. "And as you toil your life away, you never know who watches you and this is an awesome acknowledgement of my commitment to my people for more than half of my life."
West Vancouver-Sunshine Coast-Sea to Sky Country MP John Weston and Liberal Sen. Larry Campbell were on hand to witness the event. The ceremony reminded Weston of how grateful he is to be Canadian, he stated.
"The level of volunteerism we have in this country in every community is unbelievable," Weston said.