Aaron (Skius) Sumexheltza was elected to his second term as Chief of the Lower Nicola Indian Band, one of the communities of the Nlka’pamux Nation. The Lower Nicola Indian Band has over 1,200 members and is located in the Nicola Valley in the interior of British Columbia.
Chief Sumexheltza grew up in Merritt and Kamloops, B.C.. He later moved to Sacramento, California, where he completed a Bachelor of Arts degree in Environmental Studies from California State University. After returning to BC, he completed a law degree from the Faculty of Law at the University of British Columbia.
Chief Sumexheltza is a practicing lawyer. During the first five years of his law practice, he worked exclusively in the area of criminal defense law. He has represented many First Nations clients in B.C. Provincial Court, the Supreme Court of British Columbia, and the B.C. Court of Appeal. During the last four years of his practice he assisted survivors seek compensation for abuse suffered while attending Indian Residential Schools.
When free from his busy schedule, Chief Sumexheltza enjoys spending time with friends and family. He also enjoys spending time outdoors, including hiking, kayaking, and gathering traditional foods.