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Local Business


The wisdom of Alfred Lea By Dorothy Dobbie


Just do it Alfred Lea.


Tey would start in the fall, go until Christmas, then work helping their families for the next three months re- turning after the Easter holidays. Tat meant they had to start all over again the next year. Tis made no sense to Alfred. So


Tomahawk Chips.


manner project confidence that says he knows where he’s been and where he is going. And where is going is domination of the Indigenous chip market. Alfred has always been a precocious


A


sort. Growing up in Pine Dock, Man- itoba, he had to learn to be self-suf-


12 • Spring 2017


lingering smile warms Al- fred Lea’s face. You have to lean in to hear his quiet voice, but his words and


ficient like his father, a fisherman on Lake Winnipeg. Working hard, figur- ing things out and being resourceful just came naturally. He is also an instinctive leader. His quiet authority, even at an early age, led him to become student council president in Grade 11 at the Cranber- ry Portage Residential High School he attended. During this time, he dis- covered that many kids were attend- ing school only for part of the year.


why not change the school schedule to accommodate the students? Alfred came up with a system that allowed the kids to cram a year’s courses on a couple of subjects into shorter periods that could be completed within the timetable dictated by family needs. His ingenuity got him noticed. He was still in high school in grade 12 when he was hired by the Jack Lewis, head of the Provincial Youth Secre- tariat, to work for the Step program evaluating other students’ eligibility for the program. He was then recruit- ed by the federal government to work for Manpower and Immigration in the Opportunities for Youth Program Starting at the low end of the totem


pole, he was soon asked to do the work of some of the project officers down south who were promoted, leaving be- hind existing applications to be evalu- ated. One project to be assessed was a group of older white women who were making pottery and wanted to buy a huge kiln.. “You need a smaller kiln,”


The Hub


Photo by Alfred Lea.


Photo by Dorothy Dobbie.


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