Chief Terrance Paul of Nova Scotia’s Membertou First Nation has been awarded the 2020 Aboriginal business award for Lifetime Achievement by the Canadian Council for Aboriginal Business.

Paul has been Chief of Membertou First Nation for 35 years and is CEO of Membertou Development Corporation, which is the first Indigenous organization in the world to receive an ISO 9001 certification and was CCAB’s inaugural recipient of the Aboriginal Economic Development Corporation Award in 2014.

"I am humbled to receive the Lifetime Achievement Award from the Canadian Council for Aboriginal Business,” said Paul in a statement. “It has been my greatest honour to serve our community and work to create economic success for our people."

Since becoming Chief of Membertou in 1984, Paul has tripled the community’s land base, increased the employment rate to 80 per cent and increased graduation rates from 30 per cent to 90 per cent. In 2017, he received the Order of Canada, one of the highest civilian honours in the country.

“This year’s recipients demonstrate that when we connect hard work, passion, and determination with our values, we can transform our families and our communities,” said J.P. Gladu, President and CEO of CCAB, which is a national, non-partisan group providing knowledge, resources and programs to Aboriginal and non-Aboriginal companies that foster economic opportunities for Indigenous peoples and businesses.

The awards are founded and sponsored by Compass Group Canada and will be presented at the 2020 Gala Awards Dinner on Jan. 28 in Toronto, an event sponsored by Bruce Power.

Michael Hachey, Chief Innovation Officer of Compass Group Canada, said the winners are, “role models not only for the next generation of Indigenous leaders, but for all Canadians."

The 2020 Young Aboriginal Entrepreneur Award has been won by Shelley Stewart. Stewart, who is from the Upper Nicola Band in B.C. is the owner of the logging company, Bar S Ventures.

Tickets for the gala can be purchased here.