Canku Ota Logo

Canku Ota

Canku Ota Logo

(Many Paths)

An Online Newsletter Celebrating Native America


January 25, 2003 - Issue 79


pictograph divider


Four Nunavummiut Receive Order of Canada

credits: Photo 1: Officer of the Order of Canada; Photo 2, 3 and 4: Member of the Order of Canada

On Friday, January 17, four Nunavummiut were appointed to the Order of Canada. It's the country's highest honour for lifetime achievement.

Officer of the Order of CanadaZacharias Kunuk of Igloolik was made an officer of the Order of Canada. A man of great vision and creativity, he is the director of Atanarjuat (The Fast Runner), the first Canadian dramatic feature film produced completely in Inuktitut. It has enjoyed international success and is the winner of several awards. He is also the producer of several video documentaries that capture the stories of his Elders. In addition, he is the co-founding president of Igloolik Isuma Productions, Canada’s first independent Inuit production company. Through his leadership and unique form of storytelling, he is helping to preserve his people’s culture and traditions and to bring our northern communities to the rest of the world.

Member of the Order of CanadaFormer Nunavut and Northwest Territories commissioner Helen Maksagak was made a member of the Order of Canada. Maksagak lives in Cambridge Bay. She has demonstrated an outstanding commitment to residents of Canada’s North. She served as the first woman and the first Inuk commissioner of the Northwest Territories and was appointed the first commissioner of the newly created Territory of Nunavut. This respected Elder has also been dedicated to helping members of her community, notably as a director with the Drug and Alcohol Board and as a member of the NWT Round Table on the Environment. She is widely respected throughout the North for offering support and guidance to those who choose to live in the traditional lifestyle of their ancestors.

Member of the Order of CanadaElisapie Ootova of Pond Inlet was also named a member of the Order of Canada. She is a source of knowledge and support for a people in transition. For over 30 years, this Inuit Elder has been committed to helping the community of Pond Inlet adapt to changes to their traditional society. She has an extensive record of voluntary service in areas such as education, health care, counselling and restorative justice where her leadership and encouragement have been of great benefit. Also highly regarded as a language specialist, she is the co-author of an encyclopaedia of Inuit traditional knowledge and an Inuktitut dictionary. She is a role model for all those seeking to preserve and reinforce Inuit heritage and culture within a modern society.

Member of the Order of CanadaTagak Curley of Rankin Inlet made the distinguished list, also. He is devoted to the economic and political development of the North. Over a 30-year period, this Inuit leader played an instrumental role in the birth of Nunavut. His tireless efforts helped in the creation of this new territory through his roles as founding president of the Inuit Tapiriit Kanatami, as a lead negotiator in the Nunavut land claims process and as president of the Nunavut Construction Company. Also renowned as an astute businessman and politician, he is a champion of Inuit employment and self-government. His drive and determination have raised the national profile of his people and have contributed to the continued economic growth of the region.

Order of Canada
The Order of Canada recognizes people who have made a difference to our country. From local citizens to national and international personalities, all Canadians are eligible for the Order of Canada -- our country's highest honour for lifetime achievement.

Nunavut, Canada
Maps by Travel

pictograph divider

Home PageFront PageArchivesOur AwardsAbout Us

Kid's PageColoring BookCool LinksGuest BookEmail Us


pictograph divider

  Canku Ota is a free Newsletter celebrating Native America, its traditions and accomplishments . We do not provide subscriber or visitor names to anyone. Some articles presented in Canku Ota may contain copyright material. We have received appropriate permissions for republishing any articles. Material appearing here is distributed without profit or monetary gain to those who have expressed an interest. This is in accordance with Title 17 U.S.C. section 107.  

Canku Ota is a copyright © 2000, 2001, 2002, 2003 of Vicki Lockard and Paul Barry.

Canku Ota Logo   Canku Ota Logo

The "Canku Ota - A Newsletter Celebrating Native America" web site and its design is the

Copyright © 1999, 2000, 2001, 2002, 2003 of Paul C. Barry.

All Rights Reserved.

Thank You

Valid HTML 4.01!