Spirit Bear Coffee Company is a locally owned & operated, First Nations business. We support the health of our coffee bean farmers through organic farming methods & ensuring that they are paid fairly via Fair Trade premiums. We love working with companies & organizations who share our values of community, family, and respecting Mother Earth.
Mr. Bill Helin, Bill is a Tsimshian/Norweigan artist, wood carver, jeweler, children’s book writer/illustrator and designer. Bill has focused on the Traditional Tsimshian art of his Fathers ancestry since 1980 and has created thousands of Love Rings and Wearable Art ever since. Some of his accomplishments include designing the patch worn by astronauts on the U.S. space shuttle Columbia in 1996, Astronaut patch for Bob Thirsk his 2011 ISS 6 month mission and the carving of the “world’s largest” (192 foot tall) totem pole known as the Spirit of Lekwammen, carved for the Commonwealth Games in Victoria to symbolize unity amongst all Tribes and Nations of the world.
Mr. Sean Harding, Co-President. Sean grew up in the Cree culture of Alberta. Sean’s mother danced in the traditional dances and pow wows, at the age of 16, his beliefs developed and later grew deep into the history of the Star peoples and the 13 moons. Being brought in by notable Cree families such as the Derieu’s, Cochrane’s and the Calihoo’s Sean learned the values of a strong work ethic. His experience in the culture and teachings throughout his formulative years influences his business acumen to this day. Sean has a 32-year history in world commodity logistics and spent 13 years as a General Manager with the Jordan Company of Canada, a third-party weighmaster and logistics specialist located at Nabob Coffee. He then transitioned into horticulture controls, management, and Greenhouse Supplies. In 2006, Sean then co-founded Spirit Bear Coffee Company, Canada’s first national Indigenous owned coffee company. Spirit Bear Coffee is now a national “super-premium” brand (meaning 100% organic & Fair Trade) serving over 550 locations across Canada to date. Sean then went on to co-found with Paul 1Nation Distribution, a national distribution company. With powerful negotiating skills, Sean’s “Strategic Partners” include the likes of Chrysler Canada. Sean’s most recent successes include negotiating with various First Nation communities encouraging commerce and trade.
Mr. Paul Biglin, Co- President. Paul has over 30 years of experience in Food & Beverage and Marketing Communications with both, retail and direct sales. He also comes with 6 years of public relations experience with an OTC public company. Paul also is the co-founder of Spirit Bear Coffee Company and 1Nation Distribution. Paul began his working career on the farm preparing fruits, veggies, and honey for farmers markets. His love of foods led him into the kitchens in Europe where he returned to Canada as a “City In Guilds” certified Chef. Paul spent the last 13 years of his cooking career owning his own catering firm specializing in events from 100 to 5000. The last 5 of the 13 years he was working with Culinary Team Canada. Paul is responsible for providing executive leadership and management of the Company’s marketing organization and in-bound and out-bound marketing activities worldwide, which include: Corporate marketing, partner/channel marketing, product marketing, and product management. His goal is to position their companies in the various niche markets and as a visionary leader to achieve its revenue goals aka “indigen-omics”, thus sharing the philosophy to our First Nations communities.
The spirit bear is a unique subspecies of the North American black bear in which approximately one in every 10 bears is white or cream-coloured. Some have orange or yellow coloration on their backs. Other Kermodes are all black. The scientific name is Ursus americanus kermodei, named after a naturalist and museum curator named Frances Kermode of the British Columbia Provincial Museum. The term “Spirit Bear” is possibly attributed to First Nations tradition, which held that the white bears were to be revered and protected. Today the Tsimshian people call it “moskgm’ol,” which simply means “white bear.”
Kermode bears may have evolved on the coast in the last 10,000 years from black bear stock that became isolated from interior black bears more than 300,000 years ago.
The white colour may be due to inheritance of a single gene for hair colour, but other more complex mechanisms may be involved. Further genetic research is needed.
Legend shared by: Bill Helin, [WeLaaxumYout]