The Thunderbird Trust


  • Austin A Henry Sr Chair
  • Megan Huff Vice Chair
  • Lori Fisher 
  • Lisa French
  • Skloud Riley
  • Michelle Burch Council appointee

Trustee Meetings

Trustees meet every third Thursday of the month when necessary.  If there isn’t any urgent business the meeting will default to the next month.  Meetings take place at the Vets building across from the baseball park.  

Audit 2023 & AGM

The 2023 audit has been completed and can be made available upon written request. The AGM will be held June 17 at the Seniors Complex from 5-7pm.  Dinner and door prizes will be available.  


Congratulations to the 2023 winners!

Final reports for 2023 projects will be due soon.  If you need a form or have any questions regarding completing this requirement please contact the office at 519-264-2626 or email [email protected].


Now Available:

The ThunderBird Trust Spring/Summer Newsletter

Where the Trust began

We are the beneficiaries of our ancestors

On March 27, 2015, several amendments were made to the Trust, including a name change. Formally, the Clench Fraud Trust, a community vote approved of the “Thunderbird Trust”.

There were other amendments authorized in the 2015 vote such as, “The Trustees agree to hold the Trust Property in trust for the Beneficiaries…”, and clarifying that the settlor of the Trust is Chippewas of the Thames First Nation. However, the new amendments went on to clarify that the beneficiaries held the legal right, title and interest in all the Trust property. 

Today the Thunderbird Trust continues to operate under the rules of the Trust Agreement, guided by community processes and professional advisors. As was with our ancestors, we continue to consider our past, our present and seven generations ahead.

“the Thunderbird trust is a community trust- it is here to benefit the people from our community.”

Thunderbird Trustees

Trustees Past and Present

Since 2004

Because the original claim avoided the question of land rights and land ownership, Chippewas of the Thames First Nation (COTTFN) agreed to the financial terms of the land claim settlement. Establishing a Trust on behalf of COTTFN members was agreed to in a community vote that required the majority of the voting population to agree. The trust is administered by appointed community and community  council members.

Investing in people and our community

communication is key

Transparent Spending

Making Progress Together

We hold annual community meetings to review our audit and take recommendations. We also host community meetings when amendments are proposed, or other things that may have an impact on the Trust.

As part of our commitment to the community, we contribute to housing, economic development, benevolent projects and emergency funding.

Understanding The Trust

The Thunderbird Trust has an amendment process to reflect the wants and needs of the community. Trustees are voted into their positions every two years.

Community Meetings

We hold annual meetings to provide updates and receive input. Our meetings are announced on our website, newsletters and our social media pages.

Approving Amendments

Making a legal amendment to a trust document is a legal process. We follow the guidelines of the Trust Agreement while implementing amendments.
Trust Portfolio Today
Projects Funded To Date
Distribution Spending To Date

We Learn How Work Together For Each Other

Efforts to improve the Trust Agreement are community efforts. We exercise transparency by making updated information available to all members of Chippewas of the Thames First Nation. 

important things you should know

Questions And Answers

Theoretically, yes the Trust does have a termination date. However, the termination date is set for twenty years after the last surviving member of Chippewas of the Thames passes away.

The Thunderbird Trust Agreement governs the trust, which was ratified by the nation’s members at a referendum.  The province of Ontario have jurisdiction over statute laws, which governs the trust as well. Provincial income tax laws also apply.

The Investment Policy Statement provides the investment managers the guidelines and restrictions on how the money must be spent.

The Investment Policy Statement is a document approved by the trustees that outlines to the investment manager how the money is to be invested.

The current elected trustees must ensure the trust laws are followed. The Trustees follow the governing policies that are in the trust agreement.

Any investments in stocks and bonds require taking risks.  The Investment Policy Statement gives the ranges in which the investment manager can trade on the stock market in Canadian, U.S., and international markets.  If they go outside these parameters The Clench Fraud Trustees can take action against Ridgewood Capital Asset Management for breaching the Investment Policy Statement.

Rodgers Consulting provides advice on trust matters and serves as the watchdog on the work of the investment managers.

Investments of capital cannot be used to loan money to the First Nation.  Income generated can be dispersed as a loan to the First Nation and charged an interest rate for borrowing.  Promissory notes given to the First Nation are not considered loans and normally would not be charged an interest rate.

Trustees for 2019/2021

  • Austin Henry, Chair
  • Megan Huff, Vice Chair
  • Monty McGahey II
  • Michelle French
  • Leona Grosbeck
  • Michelle Burch
  • Terri Fisher