(March 31, 2016) (Ottawa, ON) ― Today it is with deep sadness that the staff and board of the Native Women’s Association of Canada bid farewell to the magnificent and unflappable Claudette Dumont-Smith. A strong Algonquin woman from Kitigan Zibi, Quebec, Claudette has worked tirelessly her entire life for the betterment of Indigenous peoples, particularly for our women and girls.
Claudette Dumont-Smith is a former commissioner for the Truth and Reconciliation Commission of Canada who worked as a health-care professional within Indigenous communities since the late 1970s. A registered nurse, she has held executive positions at multiple national organizations that specialize in the health of Indigenous women and children, including the Aboriginal Nurses Association of Canada, and the National Aboriginal Child Care Commission. She has also worked as an independent management consultant, specializing in health consultation.
Claudette has researched and written about abuse and health issues within Indigenous communities, including Elder abuse, child abuse, domestic violence and problems that Indigenous women face on and off reserves. She holds a master’s degree in public administration from Queen’s University and a Bachelor of Science degree in nursing from the University of Quebec.
For those of us who have had the great fortune to work for and with Claudette, we know that she is one of the most genuine, warm and respectable human beings you could ever meet. She cares deeply for all those who surround her both personally and professionally, she leads with a unique sense of patience and tenacity, and she takes great care to lift up all those around her with her sharp Algonquin wit and infectious sense of optimism.
Claudette will be missed greatly, and we wish her all the best in retirement. Congratulations, Claudette!
“Claudette has been an incomparable asset to NWAC. She provided strong and steady leadership and took great care to ensure her staff were valued and cared for. I am truly blessed to have been able to call Claudette a colleague, and even more to call her a dear friend. Thank you so much for everything you have done for this organization, Claudette, and for Indigenous women and girls across Canada. Congratulations on your retirement!”
―Dawn Lavell-Harvard, President of the Native Women’s Association of Canada
Native Women’s Association of Canada