The Grand Council of the Crees

Rodney Hester's Words About Albert Diamond

Posted: 2009-09-11

In the summer of 2004 I received word that Albert Diamond wanted to meet with me. I was not informed of the reason why, but I knew enough to know that when Albert asks to meet with you " you just go. I had no idea he was going to make me an offer that would elevate my career to a new level.

My dad's comments to this was "Son, Albert is making you an offer you cannot refuse " you cannot put a price to be in his circle " to be in his network " to have him as a mentor " to be taken under his wing.

Albert's influence and charisma crossed barriers and opened doors. In many ways, he paved the way for success and broke new ground for countless individuals. He is the glue that bonds " the one commonality that everyone can relate to.

Albert has always been a:

The Cree Nation of Quebec and National Aboriginal community at larger lost of its heroes yesterday - one of the most influential leaders of our time.

Albert took pride in ensuring that our people had a promising future filled with hope and opportunity. He made it proud to be Cree and a member of the Cree Nation of Eeyou Istchee. His legacy will live on throughout the ages and his record will go unmatched.

A couple weeks ago I asked his permission to nominate him for the upcoming National Aboriginal Achievement Award for Business and Commerce and his response was "thanks man " sounds like a great idea " let's go for it!"

We've assembled the best team possible to complete this nomination and there will be follow through as there is no one more deserving for such a prestigious honor at this point in time. Albert - always a modest and humble man " always preferring to see someone else recognized for their achievements - a truly unmatched caliber, second to none.

He taught me to be unafraid to communicate and speak up for what was right in various conferences. One cannot ask for a better example in the world of business.

Albert always took the time to respond and when he did he always went above and beyond the call of duty. His leadership style and abilities turned challenges into shining successes.

He always spoke highly and proudly of his family, each and every one of his children and grandchildren. He always had good things to say about people and was happiest when he could assist in other people's successes.

On one occasion I was given the opportunity to speak on his behalf, and truly enjoyed being in meetings with him " these moments were priceless " to learn from one of the masters " one of the legends of our time.

When one throws a stone in a calm lake of water " there are ripples that spread out in every direction. Albert was not only the one who cast the stone, he himself was the stone.

Albert, while speaking, would always use the phrase " and so and so forth"

I think he'd still be saying the same to each and every one of us today and meaning that:

"and so on and so forth"

To many Albert is the pure definition of friendship and business.

As a friend, he always had a kind word and a happy smile to share

As a business person, his vision and decision making was able to turn many businesses into success stories.

In my opinion there was no one more loved and respected in the Aboriginal world, than Albert.

He is perhaps best know for turning around Air Creebec and making the airline the great success story it is today, but hisĀ  greatest legacy will be the impact he had in the Eeyou Istchee region.

While Albert's brother Billy Diamond worked tirelessly to provide our people a fair governmental deal, Albert worked in the business side to ensure that our people would have the opportunities needed to move forward. His life's work culminated in the creation of a business worth billions of dollars and provides employment and prosperity to everyone that desires it in our region.

Although Albert achieved a great deal of success, those that knew him, knew that his greatest and proudest achievement were his children. He would always proudly share with those close to him the stories of the time he spent with his children and how happy they used to make him.

Albert: my friend - thank you so very much, we are all going to miss you.