PRESS RELEASE: NWAC PEKE Advisory Committee Member Appointed to CIHR Institute Advisory Board

October 31, 2016 (Ottawa, ON) – The Native Women’s Association of Canada (NWAC) is pleased with the recent appointment of Erica Samms-Hurley, a Mi’kmaq woman from Newfoundland and a member of the Qalipu First Nation, to the Institute Advisory Board (IAB) on Chronic Conditions at the Canadian Institutes of Health Research (CIHR).

In the pursuit of research excellence and creativity, CIHR’s five new IABs will provide a wider scope of expertise and identify opportunities for collaboration across CIHR’s 13 Institutes and numerous initiatives. The IAB on Chronic Conditions provides advice on the discovery, development, evaluation and integration of solutions that allow Canadians living with chronic conditions to actively participate in society. There are four other IABs which include: Research Excellence, Policy and Ethics; Health Innovation; Indigenous Peoples’ Health; and, Health Promotion and Prevention.

Erica Samms-Hurley
Erica Samms-Hurley

Samms-Hurley brings a wealth of knowledge and experience to the IAB on Chronic Conditions. She is a Nurse Educator with Grenfell Campus, Memorial University of Newfoundland, and the newly elected Western Region Vice-Chief for the Qalipu Mi’kmaq First Nation Band Council. Dedicated towards improving the health & well-being of Aboriginal women, Samms-Hurley is a previous NWAC board member and is currently active on the NWAC’s Pathways PEKE (Partners for Engagement and Knowledge Exchange) Advisory Committee and the Indigenous Women’s Fund of Canada board.

In 2005, Samms-Hurley received the Governor General’s Youth Award in Commemoration of the Persons Case for her contribution to the advancement of women’s equality. She also received the Queen Elizabeth II Diamond Jubilee Medal in 2012 in recognition of her achievements and contributions to the advancement of health.


Erica Samms-Hurley – “The effective management and prevention of chronic diseases represents one of the biggest challenges to Canada’s healthcare system. I look forward to providing advice and impacting research on chronic conditions in Canada.”

NWAC President Francyne Joe – “Aboriginal women’s participation on the new CIHR IABs is an important step in addressing Aboriginal women’s health inequities in Canada”

NWAC President Francyne Joe – “CIHR’s new advisory model fosters a spirit of collaboration among Institutes and Aboriginal experts, in an effort to effectively respond to health challenges facing Aboriginal peoples.”


The Native Women’s Association of Canada (NWAC) is founded on the collective goal to enhance, promote, and foster the social, economic, cultural and political well-being of First Nations and Métis women within First Nation, Métis and Canadian societies.  As a national organization representing Aboriginal women since 1974, NWAC’s mandate is to achieve equality for all Aboriginal women in Canada.




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