Hupacasath First Nation Employees


Administration & Accounting Technician, Margaret Onyschtschuk,

marg_thumbMargaret was born and raised in Port Alberni and has been with the Hupačasath First Nation for eight years. In her spare time she enjoys playing horseshoes and quilting. Margaret has been married to her husband Paul since 2000.



Administration & Reception, Vanessa Charlong,

Vanessa is a member of Hupačasath First Nation and has been with the staff since the new hall opened in January 2002. She is the daughter of Sandra Vissia and her grandmother was the late Nessie Watts. She grew up in Courtenay and moved to Port Alberni in 1998 and has 2 grown children, Lily and Slade. She is the current Nuu-chah-nulth representative on the FNHDA Board of Directors.


Biologist & Fisheries Manager, Graham Murrell

Upon completion of his Bachelor of Environmental Science at the University of Guelph, Graham has held a number of positions in the Biology and Environmental fields.  Most recently he worked with Fisheries and Oceans Canada as a Stock Assessment Biologist in Nanaimo overseeing the Somass Escapement Program.  Graham lives in Nanaimo and keeps busy at home chasing after his 2 young children.


Capital & Housing Coordinator, Murray Machett,

Murray joined HFN in January of 2009 as a much needed Housing Coordinator. Murray brings a wealth of construction management experience to the job.
Duties include:

Act as a resource to the Housing Committee and attend all meetings, as well as provide support and information at such meetings Respond to and address issues relative to property,housing,renovations,and the maintenance of the housing waiting list(s) Ensure housing payments are maintained Conduct necessary home inspections Submit applications for funds to support the housing program Liaise with secondary funding sources for potential support.

Chief Executive Officer & Chief Financial Officer, Rick Hewson,

Rick is both an executive leader and financial professional with over 20 years’ experience working with First Nations Communities and Businesses across Canada at both a government level and with the nations directly. He has an extensive background as a Chief Executive Officer and Chief Financial Officer with publicly traded and privately held companies locally, nationally and internationally achieving the vision, goals and objectives established for success.

In his brief tenure with the Hupačasath First Nation he holds both the Chief Executive Officer’s role and the Chief Financial Officers role working with the Chief, Council and community members to achieve the Hupačasath member’s vision. This combination of vision and resources has allowed the Hupačasath First Nation to progressively advance with its goal to realize a strong, vibrant future for all members, grounded in the past and achievable in the present.

Communications Coordinator, Jolleen Dick,

Jolleen (Yahmiss) was born and raised in Hupacasath territory. Upon the completion of her degree in the Bachelor of Tourism Management program at VIU, she returned home to continue developing the Sunset Market at the Victoria Quay. Jolleen began her role as Communications Officer in February 2015


Forestry Manager, Warren Lauder

Port Alberni ForestryWarren Lauder (E-eek ma ooht la) has been an elected Councillor since 2007 and has also served as the Forest Resource Manager.In the role of Forest Resource Manager Warren has the responsibility to manage the community’s forestry operations (Woodlot and Salvage) in a sustainable manner.The Forest Resource Manager also is tasked with bringing added value to the overall forestry operation by identifying additional funding and business development opportunities through grants and R&D programs and seek economic opportunities within the forestry field. In performing the above the Forest Resource Manager must also be committed to safe work practices under the Hupacasath Safety Policy and abide by the Safety Accord under the B.C. Forest Safety Council.

Janitorial, Tracey Watts


Natural Resource Manager, Steven Tatoosh,

Steve oversees the Natural Resources Department to ensure sufficient protection of Hupacasath rights and titles. This includes data base management, administrative reporting, and staff supervision.



Social Development Coordinator, Paulette Tatoosh,

In 1996, Paulette Tatoosh completed an Accounting Office Assistant Certificate at North Island College. Additionally, in 1996, she became employed with Hupačasath First Nation as a social assistance worker. In 1997, to enhance and develop more helping skills, she completed Nuu-chah-nulth Human Services Core Training. Then, in 2002 she was a awarded a Bachelor of Social Work Degree at the University of Victoria. Ongoing professional development includes successfully finishing three levels of Trauma Counsellor Training in 2007, three levels of Motivational Interviewing from 2012 to 2014 and completing a Job Developer Certificate in 2014. Working for positive, respectful change and strengthening her human services skills are two consistent habits that she brings to her position in the Hupačasath Social Development Department.

Youth & Elders Coordinator, Carolina Tatoosh,

Since 2001, Carolina has been coordinating activities for Hupačasath community members, particularly youth and elders. Some activities include after-school programs and crafts, swimming at Echo Pool and many trips to youth friendly destinations such as Jumpin’ Jimminies. Carolina takes pride in spending time with elders on trips to Elders luncheons on Vancouver Island connecting friends and families. When time and resources are available, she facilitates harvests in Hupačasath traditional territory to bring more culturally focused activities for all such as sewing, cedar weaving, and drum making.


Seasonal Summer Employees

..coming soon