The Fort McKay First Nation has nearly 900 band members of which about 500 reside in the community of Fort McKay — located approximately 60 kilometres north of Fort McMurray on the shores of the Athabasca River. Fort McKay is a signatory to Treaty 8 and boasts a longstanding history dating back to 1820 when the Hudson Bay Company first built a trading post near the current site.
The community includes members who are of Cree and Dene heritage. The First Nation is managed by an elected Chief and Council and senior administrative body, led by the Band’s CEO. The Fort McKay First Nation also has reserves 174A at Gardiner (Moose) Lake and 174B at Namur (Buffalo) Lake approximately 65 kilometres northwest of Fort McKay.
Fort McKay is among Canada’s leading First Nations when it comes to working collaboratively with industry. The Nation has a successful and long-established record of relationship building with the various oil sands mining companies that operate in our traditional territory. Given the importance of our relationships with industry and their impact on our community, our Sustainability Department is dedicated to preserving our members’ ability to exercise their Treaty rights and practice traditional land uses even as it works with the oil sands industry to pursue responsible resource development. Revenue generated from impact benefit agreements with oil sands developers and band-owned businesses are reinvested for the betterment of the entire community.
Fort McKay aims to maximize its participation in the economy to create sustainable, long-term growth and opportunity for its members. Beginning with a janitorial services company, Fort McKay has developed several of its own companies. In 1986, the Fort McKay Group of Companies was established, which is fully-owned and operated by the community. These enterprises serve many corporate clients in northeastern Alberta in the oil sands, pipeline, forestry, and public sectors. In addition to these, Fort McKay First Nation has also established numerous joint venture companies to advance the interests of its members.