Lillian Eva Dyck: Honourable
senators, on Friday, March 7, I had the great pleasure of
attending the fifteenth annual National Aboriginal
Achievement Awards gala show in Toronto. The National
Aboriginal Achievement Awards were established to encourage
and celebrate excellence in the Aboriginal community.
Each year 12 recipients are recognized
for their outstanding accomplishments in various careers
ranging from science and technology to the arts. In
addition, an award is given to an outstanding young
achiever, and another award is given to someone with
outstanding lifetime accomplishments. These awards are one
of the highest honours that the Aboriginal community bestows
upon its own achievers.
One of the award recipients was from
the University of Saskatchewan. Dr. Marie Ann Battiste, a
Mi'kmaq woman, received the education award. Dr. Battiste is
a professor in the College of Education and Director of the
Aboriginal Educational Research Centre of the University of
Saskatchewan. She is also Co-director of the Aboriginal
Learning Knowledge Centre, a national centre of the Canadian
Council on Learning. Dr. Battiste is an internationally
known scholar in the field of Aboriginal epistemology. She
has conducted award winning research and published
extensively on Aboriginal ways of knowing, anti-racism and
decolonization of mainstream education.
Honourable senators, in addition to
honouring the achievements of Aboriginal people, the annual
National Aboriginal Achievement Awards gala showcases
Aboriginal musicians, singers, comedians, dancers and so on.
I encourage you to watch the televised version of the gala,
which will air on APTN and Global on March 22 at 8 p.m.,
Eastern Standard Time.
Congratulations are due to Roberta
Jamieson, the Chief Executive Officer of the National
Aboriginal Achievement Foundation, and Jennifer Podemski,
the Creative Producer, for putting on yet another wonderful