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PRESS RELEASE: Dale Cooper Appointed as Executive Director, 17th AMA & 5th Achievement Awards

Ouje-Bougoumou, QC. March 14, 2024 – The Cree Native Arts and Crafts Association (CNACA) is pleased to announce the appointment of Dale Cooper as the Executive Director. We are proud and excited to experience the leadership that Dale will bring to the organization in this new role. CNACA welcomes and congratulates Dale Cooper in his new venture. We are confident in his ability to lead us forward in protecting and promoting Cree arts and crafts.

Our 17th Annual Members Assembly in Whapmagoostui was a great success. This year’s theme was ‘Innovation & Integrity: Nurturing Cree Artistry with IP Protection’. On March 5th, 2024, the delegates attended an activity day at the Cultural Camp in Whapmagoostui. This day was enjoyed by all, and we thank the community for their kindness in sharing their knowledge, good conversation and delicious food.

Day 1 of our AMA took place on March 6th, 2024. Corporate matters were discussed, in addition to CNACA programs and services. Members were invited to join virtually via Zoom, where they were able to participate and ask questions when necessary. Day 2 of the AMA took place the following day on March 7th, 2024. The presentations aimed to give insightful resources to our members which included the following topics: Marketing & Social Media, Pricing & Inflation, Intellectual Property, Music Resources, Product Photography, Royalties, Traditional Knowledge IP Protection, and Authentic Pricing.

On the evening of March 6th, 2024, we hosted the 5th Eeyou Istchee Achievement Awards. We had a great turnout and want to thank all the artists who performed during the event. CNACA would like to congratulate all of the artists and artisans who were nominated. The following is a list of the winners for each award category. Congratulations to all!

Rising Star Award:
Wabiguin Bearskin

Self Innovator Award:
BabbeyJane Happyjack

Best Fiddler Award:
Eric Sheshamush

CNACA Arts Leadership Award:
Waskaganish Cultural Department

Performing Arts Award:
Diane Coon-Come

Traditional Arts Award:
Helen Tanoush Gull

Multidisciplinary Arts Award:
Manuan Lafond

Contemporary Arts Award:
Flora Weistche

Visual Arts Award:
Theresa MacLeod-Loon

Youth Artist of the Year:
Jessika Danyluk

The Artist Entrepreneur Award:
Natasia Mukash

The Buckley Petawabano Award:
Betsy Longchap

Lifetime Achievement Award:
George Kawapit

Honouring Trailblazers:
Clifford Bearskin and Board of Compensation

We would like to thank the community of Whapmagoostui for hosting our 17th AMA and 5th Achievement Awards. We extend our gratitude to the Local Coordinator, Amy Salt, and her team. Their hard work and immense help made the event possible! We would also like to thank Joshua J. Kawapit for his expertise in the planning and execution of the event. CNACA looks forward to seeing him progress as the chairperson of the Whapmagoostui local arts committee.

Cree Native Arts & Crafts Association

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