To bolster First Nations, Inuit, and Métis businesses by encouraging consumers to invest in Indigenous goods and services, and supporting such businesses in the digital economy while honouring Truth & Reconciliation.
Our goal through the Shop First Nations initiative is to spur consumer support for Indigenous businesses across Canada.
Data from the Canadian Council for Aboriginal Business indicates that “over 99% of Aboriginal businesses are SMEs” [small- or medium- enterprises]. Because of this entrepreneurial mindset, Indigenous businesses rely on you – the consumer – to help them survive. Regardless of your ancestry, whether you’re Indigenous or a new citizen to Canada, please do what you can to show your support for Indigenous businesses!
Our purpose is to:
- Appeal to you – the consumer – to choose First Nations products and services
- Encourage First Nations businesses to leverage the digital economy to improve their business
Our first step in fulfilling this purpose is the creation of an Indigenous business directory to promote Indigenous business near you.
All my relations,
Rob Schulz, founder Shop First Nations
Rob Schulz, Founder
Rob is Métis (ancestral roots from Northwest Territories & Fort Chipewyan) on his mother’s side and German on his father’s side. He was born and raised in Greater Vancouver (unceded, traditional territories of the Squamish, Musqeum, and Tsleil-Waututh First Nations) and currently resides in New Westminster (includes traditional territory of Qayqayt First Nation). He graduated from BCIT with a Diploma (Honours) in Computer Systems Technology.
Professionally, Rob is well versed in providing strategic technology solutions with expertise as an Enterprise and Integration Architect in the retail and commercial real estate sectors. A team player, he enjoys creating collaborative relationships and shared goals to deliver impactful technical solutions in today’s digital economy.
When not geeking out, he enjoys watching and playing football (soccer), running, and traveling.
Chelssie Baker, Director of Marketing
Chelssie Baker is Squamish Nation on her Father’s side and German-Russian on her Mother’s side. She grew up in Kelowna , B.C until she left Canada at 18 to start following her passions.
For 15 years Chelssie lived abroad, primarily in Bali, Jakarta, and China. She has been a yoga teacher, bootcamp trainer, an entrepreneur, a businesswoman, and a TV personality. Some of the businesses she owned were an internet café, a restaurant, a bed & breakfast and a laundry mat. Chelssie is very active in charity programs, focusing on sustainable agriculture and aquaponics, often holding fundraisers for orphanages. Chelssie was also a translator in the Indonesian Parliament.
“I love to immerse myself in culture, learning different languages and traditions.”
“I’ve always been a storyteller, whether it was writing songs, being a T.V actress, or even in business, it’s selling a story. I found the best stories to tell were other peoples, because only then we can empathize, and through empathy grow compassion and perspective. I realized I needed to live the rest of my life back in my home country, learning my own culture and traditions. That’s what made me move back to the Okanagan for good in 2018.
“My goal now is to personally meet and hear the stories of Indigenous business owners all over the Okanagan. I want to help them grow, feel heard and supported. I feel like teaming up with Shop First Nations and creating this spin off, Shop First Nations Okanagan is my calling and something I am very passionate about.”
James Delorme, Director of Community Relations
James Delorme (he / him) is a director at Shop First Nations. He is the former Chief of the Klahoose First Nation. In addition to his leadership roles he actively supports social impact work on various distinct boards such as the BC Small Business Roundtable, the BC Assembly of First Nations, Junior Achievement BC, Powell River Education Services Society and co-founder of the First Nations Internet Society. His current role as a Director of SFN focuses his time on technology innovation and working on impactful projects, both digitally and socially with companies.
James is committed to not only economic driven opportunities, but more importantly social impact projects supporting Indigenous rights and follow the United Nations Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples (UNDRIP), the Truth and Reconciliation 94 calls to action, and the BC Declaration of Indigenous Peoples Rights Act (DRIPA).
Daphane Nelson - Volunteer Advisor
Daphane Nelson has lived most of her life in unceded Secwepemcúl’ecw; her family is from Clinton B.C., she graduated high school in Ashcroft and then moved to Kamloops in the mid-90s to study business and economics at university. Since then, she has held a range of positions in the financial sector, oversaw a law firm and started her own business consultancy. Coincidental to her contract as an export advisor she currently serves as a director for the Interior Savings Credit Union. Through the onboarding process for the credit union, Daphane discovered the co-operative model and developed a passion for the business model. In her spare time Daphane enjoys singing, writing, and a range of sports.