Native Village Youth and Education News
February 1, 2009 Issue 194 Volume 1

4 northerners named to Order of Canada
Condensed by Gina Boltz, Director, Native Village Publications

Canada: The Order of Canada is the country's highest honour. It recognizes Canadians for outstanding achievements or exceptional contributions to Canada's cultures.

This year's honors go to:


Nellie Cournoyea received the Northern Medal from ex-premiere Gov. Gen. Michäelle Jean in April during Jean's visit to Inuvik. Jean awarded Cournoyea with the Northern Medal to recognize her long career as a politician and aboriginal negotiator. Prior to her time in N.W.T. politics, Cournoyea helped craft the landmark 1984 land-claim agreement between the Arctic's Inuvialuit people and the federal government. She still represents the Inuvialuit and now chairs  the Inuvialuit Regional Corp. in Inuvik, N.W.T.  Nellie was sited for her "active involvement in promoting social and economic development for aboriginal people," as well as for her long political career," said Jean. Cournoyea is of mixed Norwegian and Inupiaq heritage.Cournoyea was appointed to the Order of Canada is as an officer. She.

Dave Joe was also name an officer of the order. Joe is from the Champagne-Aishihik First Nation in the Yukon. He currently lives in Vancouver where he runs a law firm. Jean praised Joe for his efforts to create stronger communities and build positive relations between First Nation and non-First Nations people. Joe also negotiated  final land claim agreements for several Yukon First Nations.

Fred Carmichael was also named a member to the Order of Canada. Like Cournoyea, Carmichael lives in Inuvik, N.W.T. He was recognized for his career as a Gwich'in leader, businessman and volunteer. Carmichael served as  Gwich'in Tribal Council president from 2000 until 2008 when he retired.  Since signing the Gwich'in land claim more than 15 years ago, the tribal council is implementing the agreement to ensure the Gwich'in are included in economic plans for the Mackenzie Delta region.

Arlene Haché of Yellowknife was named a member to the Order of Canada. Arlene is a social advocate through Centre for Northern Families and other local, territorial and national associations.

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