Jody Wilson-Raybould is the new Member of Parliament for Vancouver Granville and Canada’s new Minister of Justice and Attorney General. She was the first Indigenous Canadian to be named as Minister of Justice.
Wilson-Raybould served as a Regional Chief at the BC Assembly of First Nations between 2009 and her election to the House of Commons. In that role she was responsible for governance and national building. She was also chosen as commissioner by the chiefs of the First Nations Summit, a role she filled for seven years.
She is a descendant of the Musgamagw Tsawataineuk and Laich-Kwil-Tach peoples, which are part of the Kwakwaka’wakw and also known as the Kwak’wala speaking peoples. She is a member of the We Wai Kai Nation and served on the nation’s council. Her Kwak’wala name is Puglaas, which means ‘woman born to noble people.’
As a councillor for We Wai Kai Nation she helped the community develop a Land Code and move out from under the Indian Act. She was then appointed as her Nation’s representative to the national First Nations Lands Advisory Board and was elected from among her peers to sit as a Board Member for the LAB as well as a member of the Finance Committee.
In her role at the BC Assembly she has been passionate about working for the advancement of First Nations governance, fair access to land and resources as well as education and health care.
Before serving as Regional Chief, she was an advisor at the BC Treaty Commission, a body that oversees treaty negotiations between BC First Nations and the Crown. She also worked as a provincial Crown prosecutor in Vancouver.
She has a Bachelor of Arts in political science and history from the University of Victoria and a law degree from the University of British Columbia. She was called to the bar in 2000.
Wilson-Raybould has also been an active volunteer in her community and has won several awards for her work.
Her main areas of concern include democratic reform; balancing the environment and the economy, Aboriginal affairs and affordable housing.
Wilson-Raybould is married to Dr. Tim Raybould, a public policy consultant and former policy advisor to the First Nations Finance Authority. Her father is Bill Wilson, a First Nations politician. Her grandmother, Ethel Pearson was also a community activist.