Community & Indigenous Engagement

Practical Solutions – Sustainable Results

We are a social performance consultancy with significant expertise supporting our clients’ success in community, consultation, lands, environmental assessment and policy development initiatives. Arbutus works with First Nations, municipalities, companies, industry associations, investors, government agencies and multi-party collaboratives. We work in several parts of Canada, the US and South America.

We are known for our depth of knowledge and results, providing strategic counsel for:

  • Community, stakeholder and government relations
  • Environmental assessment & permitting
  • Indigenous, federal and provincial policy
  • Land/resource use planning and management
  • Social Performance Programs and Management
  • Indigenous-corporate agreements (LOI, MOU, IBA)
Our services include
  • Policy development
  • Project management
  • Negotiation of agreements 
  • Research
  • Strategic advisory services
  • Capacity building
  • Training
  • Community development

You’re in good company

Let our clients speak for us

Arbutus Consulting and Laureen Whyte are very committed to working with First Nation communities. They are excellent advocates for their clients and provide a superior understanding of the issues that our Nation faces. We have and will continue to have a long-standing relationship with this firm that conducts themselves professionally and provides a high-quality suite of services.

Shona NelsonDane-zaa ghaa adishtl’ish gha deh (Band Manager), Doig River First Nation

Arbutus is a resource of choice for strategic guidance and management of community, First Nations and government relations. One of Laureen’s most impressive attributes is her breadth of knowledge of the many complex dynamics involved in establishing social license with stakeholders and First Nations, and in permitting processes. Combined with her extensive network in local and Aboriginal communities, government and industry, her team’s commitment to service has provided value to Cliffs Natural Resources and the communities where we operate in British Columbia.

Sean WhitefordVP Exploration, Cliffs Natural Resources

It is my pleasure to provide this letter of support for Ms. Laureen Whyte because she has given generously of her time and expertise and has made significant contributions to the mining, mineral exploration and energy sectors with a special focus on creating healthy community relationships along the way. Laureen is respected and trusted in the communities she has served through the Natural Resources sectors.

Shawn A-in-chut Atleoformer National Chief, Assembly of First Nations

Laureen Whyte and Arbutus consulting has been of very material value to FPX Nickel in our exploration activities in British Columbia. Laureen's broad knowledge, extensive experience, and solid advice have been of great assistance to us in the areas of community relations and corporate social responsibility in particular. This is very much appreciated. Laureen is also great fun to work with and we look forward to continuing the association.

Dr. Peter M D BradshawChairman, FPX Nickel

Laureen worked with FLNRO on a complex land use plan in northern BC involving multiple diverse stakeholders, and on natural resources policy involving the minerals sector. Her knowledge about the dynamics of communities, First Nations, government and industry combined with her mature and thoughtful approach to public policy were helpful in successfully concluding these processes. Laureen has been a pleasure to work with.

James CuellRegional Executive Director, BC Ministry of Forests, Lands and Natural Resource Operations

Arbutus Consulting has been a key resource to our BC Ferries team in the upgrading of over 40 ferry terminals in our service area. Laureen’s knowledge and understanding of First Nations, her professional approach to constructive dialogue with stakeholders and program development skills have helped us to secure the timely support we’ve needed to succeed with advancing the terminal improvements. Thank you Laureen!

Manuel AchadinhaFormer Vice President, Terminal Operations BC Ferries

Laureen Whyte (Arbutus Consulting) was engaged by Terrane Metals Corporation in several aspects of Sustainability planning for the advancement of the Mt Milligan Mine Project. In addition to Aboriginal Engagement and strategy, she provided advice and direction to facilitate effective community relations for the project. She also assisted Terrane Metals Executive in the formulation and implementation of Terrane’s Corporate Sustainability approach, carefully balancing the priorities of the perspective of Terrane shareholders, Board of Directors, Senior Management and staff, First Nations, Stakeholders and Government regulators. Her assistance to Terrane Metals was highly effective, and provided for a positive reception of the project, ultimately resulting in project approval and construction. Her personal and business conduct was and is, characterized by professionalism and full commitment to her clientele.

Glen W WondersFormer Vice President, Corporate Affairs, Terrane Metals Corporation

Laureen Whyte of Arbutus Consulting clearly understands what it takes for business and Aboriginal organizations to succeed in their relationship-building and development objectives. Laureen’s wealth of experience in working with Aboriginal communities and the gas industry enables her to deliver analysis and strategic advice that has been very meaningful and immediately useful.

Bruce FalsteadAboriginal Relations Manager, Fortis BC

If you need something done - give it to a busy woman! Like Laureen, whose tireless work with the Minerva Foundation resulted in an excellent leadership program being developed for women in our communities.

Sophie PierreFormer Chief Commissioner, BC Treaty Commission

Laureen is a unique developer of corporate policy and programs and a proven community relations professional with a strong track record in the British Columbia energy sector. Her hallmark was the creation of the best programs in industry to deal with the areas of her responsibility in Community & Aboriginal Relations, and sticking with the implementation of the program until the job was successfully done. Duke Energy’s Northern Opportunities Program created collaboration in northeastern BC between three school districts, a community college and regional industries for the purpose of providing educational pathways for technical trades training. I cannot overstate Laureen’s accomplishment in bringing so many diverse – and sometimes competitive – interests to the table to achieve so much mutual benefit.

Doug HalversonFormer Vice President, Community & Regional Affairs, Duke Energy Gas Transmission