With a background in environmental studies and land management, Melissa Hotain spent ten years working in policy analysis for the Assembly of Manitoba Chiefs (AMC) on First Nations environmental and legislation issues. She was responsible for research, planning, policy analysis and strategic development related to the environment and First Nation matters, and participated in various regional, national and international committees dealing with land, water and environmental issues. Following her work with the AMC she was an independent contractor for four years working on a variety of initiatives including, research, policy analysis, facilitation and liaison services, conference coordination, proposal development, project management, and strategic planning. She currently works as a Senior Policy Analyst in Water Issues with the Assembly of First Nations in Ottawa, Ontario.
She strongly believes in working to revitalize and apply traditional knowledge based on the Dakota Seven Generations concept—the philosophy of assessing actions and decisions based on the health and well-being of our future generations.