Mr. Arthur Mercer

Mr. Arthur Mercer
NCIED Director, Community Initiatives

Mr. Arthur Mercer, whose Nisga’a name is Simoogit Galga, is a hereditary Chief, and past CEO, Nisga’a Commercial Group and past economic development coordinator for the Nisga’a Lisim’s Government. His broad experience over three decades includes building strategic economic development partnerships that increase business accessibility and capacity building for the Nisga’a Nation.

For several years, Mercer advised NCIED regarding resource and infrastructure development industries, and their relation to local businesses and international market opportunities. In 2018, in partnership with BC Ministry of Jobs, Tourism & Skills Training, Mercer and Dr. Brent Mainprize co-facilitated economic development workshops in Indigenous communities in the eight economic regions of BC. At the request of BC Ministries of Citizens’ Services and Indigenous Relations and Reconciliation in 2019, they co-facilitated a set of workshops focused on developing a coordinated government approach to Indigenous Procurement.

During the past year in his role as Director, Community Initiatives, Mercer developed partnerships with Indigenous communities, organizations and academics across Canada. He was the catalyst for a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) signed in 2019 between Algonquin College of Applied Arts and Technology, the largest college in Eastern Ontario, and NCIED. Collaboration with Algonquin’s Ron McLester, Vice President of Truth, Reconciliation & Indigenization, and Andre O'Bonsawin, Manager of Indigenous Initiatives, resulted in a mutually beneficial agreement to learn from each other. A significant outcome of the partnership was the approval of federal funding in 2020 to co-deliver the ACE program in 2021 in communities of the Algonquins of Pikwàkanagàn and Mohawks Council of Akwesasne, in Ontario.

Mercer also led an application submitted to Natural Resources Canada (NRCan) by NCIED, in partnership with Tribal Resources Investment Corporation (TRICORP). In early 2020, funding was approved to conduct engagement sessions to identify communities’ needs and requirements to build capacity. In 2017 and 2020, Mercer participated in NCIED’s Ideafest events as a valued panel member. Ideafest is an annual week-long festival at UVic that highlights creative endeavours and research.

Mercer’s company, Tseax Development Group Ltd., provides strategic business and economic development advisory services. At the 2019 Indigenous Business Awards, he received the Outstanding Business Achievement award.