Cultural Specialist icon Cultural Specialist

Linda Tollas

Linda (Gaajiiaawa) is of the Skedans Raven clan and lives in Skidegate, Haida Gwaii with her husband. She is a proud mother and grandmother to two sons, five grandchildren and twin great-granddaughters.

Aside from a 25-year period, Linda has lived her whole life in Haida Gwaii.  She and her husband returned in 1997.  They spent two summers as Watchmen, protecting and educating visitors about her ancestral village of Skedans.  Her passion for learning and her communication and leadership skills made her a natural Cultural Heritage interpreter.  She worked for 14 years in this capacity with Gwaii Haanas National Park Reserve and Haida Heritage Site, educating diverse audiences about Haida culture and ethnobotany.  Linda provided guided hikes of the forests and evening slide shows to visitors, and delivered educational and interactive programs to all schools in Haida Gwaii.

Linda has also served as a local educator to university students from across Canada enrolled in the Haida Gwaii Higher Education Society Semester Program since its inception five years ago.  Her enthusiasm about cedar, ethnobotany and Haida culture, and her engaging approach have always made her guided hikes of Spirit Lake a favorite of the Semester Program.

A highlight of her career with Gwaii Haanas was accompanying the Skidegate Haida Immersion Program (SHIP) elders as they circumnavigated Moresby Island for their Haida place-naming project. Inspired with SHIP’s work, Linda retired from Gwaii Haanas in 2012, and joined SHIP to learn the Haida language!