2021 Candidate Statements


Helen Kristmanson's statement

It’s an honour to put my name forward for the position of President of the Canadian Archaeological Association.

A member of the CAA for over three decades I represent PEI at the CAPTA table and am pleased to be a new member of the CAA Ethics Review Committee.

I currently serve as the director of Prince Edward Island’s Indigenous Relations Secretariat and also as the Provincial Archaeologist. Originally from Fredericton, New Brunswick, I studied at the University of New Brunswick, the University of Calgary (BA), Memorial University of Newfoundland (MA) and the University of Manchester (Ph.D.). I’m an adjunct professor and graduate faculty with the Department of Sociology and Anthropology and the Institute of Island Studies at the University of Prince Edward Island.

My research and field interests are varied and include both pre-contact and historical archaeology. I have participated in a long term collaboration with the Mi’kmaq Confederacy of PEI and Lennox Island First Nation to study the archaeology of Malpeque Bay.  I have also worked closely with the Acadian community to examine Pre-Deportation era sites on the Island. I am also currently collaborating with the Glenaladale Heritage Trust to identify and document the archaeological remnants of the late 18th-19th century estate of Scottish Highlanders Captain John MacDonald and Helen (Nelly) MacDonald in Tracadie Bay. In the face of global warming, an issue familiar to many CAA archaeologists, we have also been conducting a shoreline survey program to identify threatened sites and develop mitigation strategies.

In my current role, I routinely work with other government officials, professional archaeologists, First Nations and Indigenous organizations, community interest groups, educators, and the public on matters ranging from rights and reconciliation, to climate change, public policy, education, and cultural resource management. Through this work and my role at intergovernmental tables and other fora, I recognize the common interests and concerns of archaeologists across the country.  As President of the Canadian Archaeological Association I would look forward to working together with committees and general membership on these and other shared and emerging areas of interest.

Secretary-Treasurer (or Treasurer*) (4 year term)
*If the CAA membership supports splitting the Secretary-Treasurer position

Joanne Braaten's statement

Member of the CAA Board of Directors, and Secretary-Treasurer, Joanne Braaten has informed the Board that she is willing to continue on for a four-year term (2021–2025). Ms. Braaten supports the proposed splitting of the Secretary-Treasurer position and if it is approved by the membership, will serve as Treasurer. The Board unanimously supports this appointment, as it will allow Ms. Braaten to help orient the incoming Supporting Director (who will serve as Secretary if the membership approves the proposed change) to ensure the continuity of the Association's record keeping.

Supporting Director (or Secretary*) (2 year term)
*If the CAA membership supports splitting the Secretary-Treasurer position

Maryssa Barras

I am a young professional who is passionate about both archaeology and the archaeological community in Canada – with a vested interest in heritage legislation, policy, regulation, and community engagement. Most recently, I have joined the CAA Advocacy Committee and worked with the CAA as Conference Intern, and I am now seeking to expand my role in the organisation by serving as a Supporting Director and if the Secretary position is approved by the membership, as a record keeper for the CAA, which lines up with my interests in policy and regulation. In this role I also hope to be able to bring a different perspective to the executive committee as an early career professional, and as a student when I begin a second graduate degree in the fall, capable of providing insight to the committee on the student and early career demographics of archaeologists in the country.

Despite only having recently finished my MSc in archaeology, I have a long history with community engagement, non-profit work, and event management. Some of my past experience is, for example, as the president of my student association, as member-at-large for my graduate student association, as elected representative for my graduate union, as a union rep in archaeology, and as a social media coordinator for a provincial organisation.

Throughout my undergraduate and graduate research I have had the opportunities to study and work with a diversity of faculty at both Memorial University and the University of Toronto. Cumulatively, most of my research and professional work has also taken place across the province of Newfoundland and Labrador, and the island of Saint-Pierre-et-Miquelon, although I also have experience in Ontario and some research experience internationally. Currently I am working with heritage organisations in Newfoundland, heavily focused on community engagement and site mapping. In the fall, I will begin a research project examining the state of CRM regulation in Ontario, assessing the entanglements between land development regulations and heritage regulations to theorise ways to reformulate more inclusive provincial definitions of heritage sensitive to landscapes and intangible culture.