Barb Howe Bill Martin Carey Nash Carol Breen Dave Ball Dawn Candy Erin Schwab Evelyn Kirkaldy Ilya Oratovsky Ina Schultz Leo Parent Louise & Al Schoepp Lucas Seaward Lynn Symington Maryanne Jespersen Melanie Morstad Robert Shatilla Ross Lynem Rudy Pongo Steve Coffey Susan Greenbank
Robert Shatilla is from Buffalo Narrows and began making birchbark vessels in 2006. In 2006, Robert had a life changing event when he was in a vehicle accident involving a deer. His injuries prevented him from living his previous lifestyle. In this time when Robert had limited mobility, is when he found the joy of working with birchbark. Robert found a teacher who came to him to instruct him on the craft. The teacher insisted on a high level of quality and would not “pick up” any basket that Robert made that was not to a high level of quality. It took Robert making three baskets before the teacher reached down to pick the final basket up.
Since that time Robert has thrived by making a living from his craft. He goes into the woods to harvest birch trees and “hunting” for drift wood along the river banks to use for stand for the canoes. Most of all, Robert enjoys teaching others the craft of working with birchbark. He hosts workshops where he “teaches the teachers” and gains great comfort in knowing that children are going to be learning this ancient craft.