September 14, 2019

(OTTAWA, ON) Today, during its Annual General Assembly, the Native Women’s Association of Canada (NWAC) elected Lorraine Whitman as its new president.

Ms. Whitman served as president of the Nova Scotia Native Women’s Association and has been a long-time advocate for Indigenous women’s rights. She has a deeply-rooted passion for health care and healing, and has spoken on many occasions about the seven sacred teachings and traditional values. Ms. Whitman spent 15 years as an elected councilor and an entrepreneur, operating a greenhouse business and coffee company.

“I am thrilled to take on this new and challenging role. I look forward to working with women at the grass roots level, from coast to coast to coast, on our priorities including the implementation of the Calls for Justice and the building of capacity of our Provincial & Territorial Member Associations,” Ms. Whitman said.

Yesterday, NWAC’s Board of Directors accepted the resignation of its former president, Francyne Joe who resigned as president effective September 11, 2019.  Ms. Joe and NWAC have reached a mutually agreeable resolution that will allow Ms. Joe and NWAC to move forward and to continue their important work. Ms. Joe looks forward to continuing her efforts on behalf of Indigenous peoples and wishes NWAC, its members, and the Indigenous women they serve all the best in the future.

Also during yesterday’s meeting, the Board of Directors put their full support behind NWAC’s CEO and staff to continue to advocate, lobby, and work for the benefit of NWAC and its women of many nations.

CEO Lynne Groulx received a standing ovation from delegates attending the Assembly for her presentation that underlined the critical work she has done on the signing and implementation of the Canada / NWAC Accord and her work on NWAC’s Social and Cultural Innovation and Resiliency Centres. Ms. Groulx’s accomplishments also include the development of the partnerships she has made nationally and internationally, developing strategic relationships with other Indigenous women’s groups around the world and united nations human rights advocates.


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