Member Profiles

Catherine Cockney

Catherine Cockney

Government of Canada Appointed Member (2022 - Present)

Chair

Nominated by the Government of the Northwest Territories and appointed by  the Government of Canada  on July 19, 2022.
Present Term: July 19, 2022 for three years.
Previous Terms: member since October 31, 2016.

Catherine Cockney has a Bachelor of Arts degree from the University of Alberta. Catherine is a cultural specialist with knowledge she learned from her mother Winnie Cockney and from the many elders she interviewed. In her meetings with elders, they taught her to understand the importance of maintaining your culture, teaching the younger generation and looking after the environment. The elders emphasized the importance of owning land that can help us maintain our culture and values.

Catherine’s achievement’s include conducting oral history projects, research on Inuvialuit artifacts and assisting in the revival of Inuvialuit drum dancing. Catherine enjoys sewing and participates in the many arts and craft festivals.

Ethel-Jean Gruben, Inuvik NT

Ethel-Jean Gruben, Inuvik NT

Inuvialuit Game Council Appointed Chair (2015 - Present)

Member

Appointed by the Inuvialuit Game Council: Present Term: Oct 1st, 2018 – Sept 31st 2021 for three years.

Appointed by the Inuvialuit Game Council First Term: July 14, 2015 to September 30, 2018

Ethel-Jean Gruben is one of the three members appointed by the Inuvialuit Game Council. She is serving her first term that started in July 2015. Born and raised in Inuvik NWT Canada, Ethel-Jean enjoys a cultural lifestyle where she and her family live off the land. She takes particular pride in her traditional sewing, dancing and cooking. Ethel-Jean knows the importance of a healthy family and good living. “I am continually striving to live a healthy sustainable lifestyle, rich with Inuvialuit customs and values, with a mix of Gwich’in culture and pride,” she said. With her years of experience, and a wealth of traditional and environmental knowledge, Ethel hopes to bring added value to the EIRB with her special interests regarding healthy, progressive and sustainable communities.

Bruce McLean

Bruce McLean

Government of Canada Appointed Member, (2021 - Present)

Member

Nominated by the Government of the Yukon and appointed by the Government of Canada.
Present Term: February 8, 2021 for three years.

Bruce McLean is the Yukon nominee and has lived and worked in the north for almost 40 years. Having previously lived in Inuvik for 7 years while working as a biologist for the GNWT, he is familiar with the Inuvialuit Region. He was also the Yukon nominee for a term on the Inuvialuit Environmental Impact Screening Committee (EISC).

I was fortunate to participate in a wide range of initiatives and studies in the Yukon and Northwest Territories over the years.  Together with Inuvialuit and First Nations partners I have been involved in land use planning, environmental assessment, wildlife studies and planning special management areas.

He recently retired from the Yukon Department of Environment, where he was the Senior Habitat Biologist, in Whitehorse.

Cynthia Ene, Cambridge Bay, Nunavut

Cynthia Ene, Cambridge Bay, Nunavut

Canada Member (2022 - Present)

Member

Appointed by the Government of Canada: Present Term: Oct 14, 2022 to November 2025

Ms. Ene is a professional engineer, experienced in managing infrastructure projects in Canada’s North. Ms. Ene has also served on numerous boards and committees, including the Northern Territories Water & Wastewater Association (NTWWA), and Defence Construction Canada (DCC). Her engineering work in the private sector and regulatory work on Northern infrastructure projects with the Nunavut Water Board (NWB) has given her extensive knowledge in Northern development, environmental impact assessment processes, project management, and development. Ms. Ene is a Terry Fox Humanitarian Award recipient, a recipient of the OMNIUM Academic Director Award. She holds a Bachelor of Chemical Engineering from McGill University, a Master of Business Administration from the Rotman School of Management at the University of Toronto, and an Executive Master of Business Administration from the University of St. Gallen, Switzerland. 

Kate Hearn, Yellowknife, NT

Kate Hearn, Yellowknife, NT

Government of Northwest Territories (2022 - Present)

Member

Appointed by the Government of Northwest Territories: Present Term: Oct 14, 2022 to November 2025

Kate has a B.Sc. in geology from the University of Toronto and a Masters in Natural Resources Management from the University of Manitoba.  She maintains a Professional Geologist accreditation with the Northwest Territories Association of Professional Engineers and Geoscientists. Kate Hearn came to the NWT as an exploration geologist in 1987, moving into the public sector in 1989.  Since that time she has served with the federal and territorial governments in a number of executive level positions concerned with land and resource management in the North.   Her most recent role was with the Government of the Northwest Territories where she served as  Assistant Deputy Minister Planning and Coordination in the Department of Lands from 2014 until her retirement in 2021.

Kate lives outside Yellowknife and enjoys snowshoeing, kayaking and dabbling in stained glass, ukulele playing and Taiko drumming.  She feels very privileged to be able to enjoy the natural surroundings that the North has to offer. Kate believes strongly that environmental impact assessment is an important tool in achieving sustainability outcomes.  She hopes to be able to contribute to the EIRB with her knowledge of environmental assessment practices, procedures and decision making that she has acquired through her career.

Debbie Gully, Inuvik NT

Debbie Gully, Inuvik NT

Inuvialuit Game Council Appointed Chair (2015 - Present)

Member

Debbie Gully was appointed by the Inuvialuit Game Council: Present Term: Oct 1st, 2021 – Sept 31st, 2023, for three years.

Chosen among the three board members by the Inuvialuit Game Council, Debbie is now serving her final term, which began in July 2021. Born in Inuvik, NWT and raised primarily in Sachs Harbour by my nanuk and duduk. Debbie moved to Inuvik to attend high school and lived with her parents. She likes to sew, make beadwork, crochet, and decorate her house. She also enjoys summer rod fishing and traditional winter ice fishing. For Debbie, picking cranberries on the land serves as therapy.
Along with Sachs Harbour, Aklavik, and Inuvik in the NWT, she also resided in HayRiver, Fort Smith, and Yellowknife.

Debbie has gained knowledge from the various communities she has resided.”As the world and the north are changing so quickly due to sinking earth, floods, and heat, which then affects all of the species used for food, Debbie believes that the younger generations must understand more about traditional ways to live. “

To start teaching the next generation how to manage rights for our land, resources, and people, I believe we should start encouraging them to become IFA scholars and run for IRC Boards and Committees “.
Debbie appreciates the importance of kindness, respect, and family. She also hopes to see more young couples construct cabins to enjoy the region’s valuable and pleasurable lands, waterways, clean air, and resources.