Winona LaDuke is an internationally renowned activist working on issues of sustainable development renewable energy and food systems. She lives and works on the White Earth reservation in northern Minnesota, and is a two time vice presidential candidate with Ralph Nader for the Green Party.
As Program Director of the Honor the Earth, she works nationally and internationally on the issues of climate change, renewable energy, and environmental justice with Indigenous communities. And in her own community, she is the founder of the White Earth Land Recovery Project, one of the largest reservation based non profit organizations in the country, and a leader in the issues of culturally based sustainable development strategies, renewable energy and food systems. In this work, she also continues national and international work to protect Indigenous plants and heritage foods from patenting and genetic engineering.
Papaarangi is Tumuaki and Head of Department of Maori Health at the Faculty of Medical and Health Sciences, University of Auckland, New Zealand. She holds science and medical degrees from the University of Auckland and is a specialist in public health medicine. She has tribal affiliations to Te Rarawa in the Far North of Aotearoa and her research interests include analysing disparities between indigenous and non-indigenous citizens as a means of monitoring government commitment to indigenous rights.
Dr. Pamela D. Palmater is a Mi’kmaw citizen and member of the Eel River Bar First Nation in northern New Brunswick. She has been a practicing lawyer for 18 years and is currently an Associate Professor and the Chair in Indigenous Governance at Ryerson University. She has 4 university degrees, including a BA from St. Thomas in Native Studies, and an LLB from UNB where she won the Faskin Campbell Godfrey prize in natural resources and environmental law.
An award-winning leader and visionary, Pam’s expertise in First Nation issues is regularly sought after by Parliamentary and United Nations committees dealing with laws and policies impacting Indigenous peoples. Her published works include: Beyond Blood: Rethinking Indigenous Identity, Indigenous Nationhood: Empowering Grassroots Citizens, and many legal publications.
Gertie Mai Muise
Gertie Mai Muise is Mi’kmaq from Bay St. George, Western Newfoundland and a member of the Qualipu Mi’Kmaq First Nation raised steeped in the decolonization of her people and the Indigenous “healing movement” across Turtle Island. She has lived and worked in Ontario for the past 25 years committed to developing Indigenous health capacity through securing a meaningful place for Indigenous informed wellness models and approaches. She has held senior leadership positions with Indigenous governed, regional health service organizations for over a decade. Gertie Mai is currently the CEO of the newly formed Indigenous Primary Health Care Council (IPHCC) and Co-Chair of the Indigenous Primary Health Care-MOHLTC Engagement Table. She holds a Masters of Arts in Leadership from Royal Roads University. Concerned about removing system and structural barriers Gertie Mai has spearheaded a cross provincial Indigenous cultural safety program since 2014 which has trained over 10, 000 health professionals. She has also chaired the Provincial Health Aboriginal Leads Network and the National Committee for Aboriginal Health Service Standards development with the Canadian Centre of Accreditation (CCA). Gertie Mai currently lives in London.
Marie Wilson was one of the three Commissioners chosen to lead the historic Truth and Reconciliation Commission of Canada (2009-2015) probing into the history and impacts of more than a century of forced residential schooling for Indigenous children. Ms. Wilson came to be Commissioner following more than 30 years of professional experience as an award-winning journalist, trainer, and senior executive manager. She has also been a university lecturer, a high school teacher in Africa, a senior executive manager in both federal and territorial Crown Corporations, and an independent contractor and consultant in journalism, program evaluation, and project management. She has lived, studied and worked in cross-cultural environments for almost forty years, including Europe, Africa, and various parts of Canada.
Ms Wilson has received numerous awards and acknowledgments throughout her career for writing, journalism, and contributions to communications, education, civic and democratic engagement and social justice, including her continuing work towards Truth and Reconciliation. Her recognitions include six honorary doctorates, the Order of the Northwest Territories, the Governor General’s Meritorious Service Cross, and the Order of Canada. Her blessings include three children and four grandchildren.
Ms. Tobias is from Delaware Nation. A mother of three, and grandmother of seven, she has been following her traditions for over half her life. Ms. Tobias learned about traditional healing and medicines such as sweat lodges, cedar baths and pipe ceremonies from Grandmothers in Sudbury, Ontario. She now shares this traditional knowledge, along with her contemporary social work expertise, with the Indigenous children and youth she sees at Wabano who are facing mental health and addictions issues.’
Allison is the Executive Director of the Wabano Centre for Aboriginal Health, which serves more than 15,000 Aboriginal people through its culturally-based health programs and services every year. In addition to her work with the Wabano Centre, Allison is a founding and continuing member of the Ottawa Aboriginal Coalition, and a former board member with the Community Foundation of Ottawa and the National Capital Commission.
Allison was born and raised in the First Nation community of Wikwemikong on Manitoulin Island, Ontario. She holds a Masters of Education degree in Counselling Psychology from the University of Western Ontario.
A community builder and social justice advocate, Allison Fisher has dedicated her career to creating a safe space where First Peoples can live and celebrate their cultures.
She is the recipient of the Order of Ontario, Order of Ottawa and the Meritorious Service Decoration from the Governor General.
Lee Maracle is a Sto:Loh nation; grandmother of four, mother of four who was born in North Vancouver, BC. Ms. Maracle is a both an award winning author and teacher. She currently is Mentor for Aboriginal Students at University of Toronto where she also is a teacher and also the Traditional Cultural Director for the Indigenous Theatre School, where she is a part-time cultural instructor. Her works include: the novels, Ravensong, Bobbi Lee, Sundogs, short story collection, Sojourner’s Truth, poetry collection, Bentbox, and non-fiction work I Am Woman. She is Co-editor of My Home As I Remember and Telling It: Women and Language Across Cultures, editor of a number of poetry works, Gatherings journals and has published in dozens of anthologies in Canada and America.
Madeleine Dion Stout
Madeleine Kétéskwew Dion Stout is a Cree speaker and Residential School Survivor, who was born and raised on the Kehewin First Nation in Alberta. Madeleine’s career in Nursing and academic research has shaped the way social, health and health care equity is best encouraged, cultivated and disciplined for Indigenous people.
Her commitment to Indigenous health led her to being the inaugural Vice-chair of Mental Health Commission of Canada, the President of the Aboriginal Nurses Association of Canada and appointee to the National Forum on Health.
Madeleine’s distinguished career has been honoured through multiple awards including: a National Aboriginal Achievement Award in health; the Centennial Award from the Canadian Nurses Association; the Assiniwikamik Award from the Aboriginal Nurses Association of Canada; a Distinguished Alumnus Award from the University of Lethbridge and Honorary Doctor of Laws from the University of British Columbia, the University of Ottawa and Carleton University.
In 2015, Madeleine received the Order of Canada.
Amy Bombay is an Ojibway (Rainy River First Nation) researcher who is currently Assistant Professor at Dalhousie University in the Department of Psychiatry and the School of Nursing.
She has led multiple academic research projects, with her primary areas of inquiry being the relationships between historical trauma, contemporary stressor exposure, and stress-related pathology among Indigenous peoples in Canada. Specifically, her research on the different pathways by which Indian Residential School trauma is transmitted across generation has garnered extensive media interest and has been influential in influencing policy and practice related to Indigenous health.
Dr. Margot Latimer is a Professor in the School of Nursing, and is cross-appointed in the Department of Medicine, Dalhousie University. She holds a scientific appointment at the IWK Health Centre and is faculty in the IWK Centre for Pediatric Pain Research. She works closely with community to mobilize Indigenous knowledge and co-leads the CIHR funded research “Aboriginal Children’s Hurt and Healing” Initiative with Eskasoni Health Director, Sharon Rudderham.
John R. Sylliboy
John R. Sylliboy is a member of the Millbrook First Nation and is the Aboriginal Children’s Hurt & Healing Initiative (ACHH) National Research Coordinator. He has extensive experience as a health policy analyst for First Nation communities and is research lead on several projects that impact the health, wellbeing and educational pursuit of Indigenous youth. John holds a Master in Education at Mount Saint Vincent University.
Corey O’Soup is Saskatchewan’s Advocate for Children and Youth, the province’s first ever Indigenous Advocate.
Corey has had an extensive career working on behalf of children and youth in his roles as an educator, Senior Policy Analyst for the FSIN, Provincial Superintendent for the Ministry of Education, Senior Manager for the Alberta Ministry of Education, Executive Director for Education/Post-Secondary Education and Training for the FSIN and as the First Nations and Métis Advisor for the Ministry of Education.
Corey was born and raised in Saskatchewan, and is a member of the Key First Nation.