Appointed to the Senate by the Rt. Honourable Jean Chrétien, Senator Ione Christensen represents the Yukon and the Senatorial Division of Yukon Territory. She has served in the Senate of Canada since September 2, 1999.
She is currently a Member of the following Senate Committees: Aboriginal Peoples; Energy, the Environment and Natural Resources; Legal and Constitutional Affairs; and, the Subcommittee on Aboriginal Economic Development in relation to Northern National Parks, for which she also serves as Chair. Areas of interest and specialization include municipal affairs, and northern development.
Senator Christensen is an entrepreneur, and currently a partner in Cameras North, a consulting firm that specializes in photography, publishing and Business Management. She is also Executive Director of the Yukon Foundation, and Director of the National Association of Canadian Land Surveyors.
Her background includes extensive community involvement. She served terms (1989-1994) as Chair of the Advisory Committee on Waste Management of the Government of Yukon and as Executive Director of Crossroads Alcohol and Drug Treatment Centre. From 1984-1989 she worked in the Whitehorse office of Energy, Mines and Resources Canada, and also served as Vice-Chair of the Yukon Economic Council. From 1980-1986 she was President of Hospitality North Ltd., during which time she also served in several directorships and as Chair of the Yukon Placer Mining Guidelines Review Committee. From 1975-1979, she served two terms as Mayor of Whitehorse, and was Chair of the Association of Yukon Municipalities and as a Director with the Federation of Canadian Municipalities. Earlier in her career, she served as Justice of the Peace, Juvenile Court Judge, and Chair of the City of Whitehorse Planning Board (1971-1975). From 1958-1967, she served in a variety of increasingly senior positions with the Government of Yukon Territory.
She is a Member of the Order of Canada (1994).
She graduated from secondary school in Whitehorse (1953), and subsequently earned a degree in Business Administration from the College of San Mateo in California.
Born October 10, 1933 in Dawson Creek, British Columbia, Senator Christensen is married. She and her husband Arthur have raised two sons, Paul and Philip.