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Museum Director

Linnea Battel

As Director of Xa:ytem Longhouse Interpretive Centre at Hatzic Rock in Mission, Linnea Battel is well known for leading Aboriginal and heritage preservation campaigns in BC's Fraser Valley.

Linnea Battel - Director Xa:ytem Longhouse Interpretive Centre

Linnea (Ai:yametkwa), a member of the Canoe Creek First Nations band, raised a family and then re-entered the workforce through a job re-entry program in business and retail management. She completed a program specializing in the management of non-profit agencies and was soon hired as Executive Director of the Friends of the Fort at Parks Canada's Fort Langley National Historic Site.

At Fort Langley, Linnea found her calling in heritage and cultural tourism. She set up and managed the fort's gift shop, oversaw the construction of the fort's northwest bastion, and was responsible for a number of archaeological projects.

Meanwhile, Linnea furthered her education at institutions such as BCIT, Langley School of Business, and the University College of the Fraser Valley, picking up courses in business, marketing, and communication. Her hands-on experience, personal knowledge of First Nations customs and new business skills soon proved to be real assets.

Linnea's campaign to save a sacred rock in a farmer's field led to the land's being declared a national historic site. Appointed Director of Xa:ytem Longhouse Interpretive Centre, she transformed the largely barren field into a First Nations attraction and learning centre where visitors can experience Sto:lo culture, history, archaeology, and spirituality. She is now responsible for managing site projects, staff, and long-term planning. A large part of her time is spent fundraising for capital expansion as she plans to build a world-class First Nations interpretive centre at Hatzic Rock. Her goal is for the site to have a building similar to the one at Head-Smashed-In Buffalo Jump in Alberta.

Linnea is proud of her work, and she feels that she is making a difference in changing people's perceptions of First Nations.

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