Speaker Profiles

Grand Council Chief, John Beaucage

Grand Council Chief, John Beaucage

Candidate for National Chief

Assembly of First Nations

In October 2004, Grand Council Chief John Beaucage was elected to serve the 42-member First Nations of the Anishinabek Nation.  John was re-elected in 2006, by acclamation, a rare occurrence in the history of one of Canada’s oldest political organizations.

 

Prior to his election as Grand Council Chief, Beaucage was the elected Chief of Wasauksing First Nation and has served in that capacity for the past eight years.

 

Beaucage is a graduate of the University of Western Ontario with a combined degree in English and Economics, and he has done post-graduate work in First Nation planning at the University of British Columbia.

 

An economist by education, Beaucage worked for the Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation (CMHC) for over 15 years in Ottawa, Thunder Bay, Toronto, Regina and Saint John, New Brunswick.

 

As Grand Council Chief, Beaucage focused on a solutions-based approach to the rights-based agenda implementing innovative approaches in restoring First Nations law-making authority, listening to the voice of the people, matrimonial real property, housing, Anishinabek Nation Economic Blueprint, an official language policy, intergovernmental relations and citizenship.

 

Grand Council Chief Beaucage played an instrumental role in the First Ministers' Meeting which took place in Kelowna, BC in November of 2005.  Leading up to the First Ministers' Meeting, John served as the Co-chair for First Ministers' Working Groups for both Housing and Relationships.

 

Grand Council Chief Beaucage co-holds the National Portfolio for Housing with Co-Chairperson for the Assembly of First Nations Chiefs Committee on Housing.  In May of 2008, Beaucage was appointed Chairperson of the First Nations Market Housing Fund.  The $300 million Fund was first announced in Budget 2007 and is a new and innovative way to give First Nations citizens the opportunity to own their own homes on reserve.

 

Grand Council Chief Beaucage is a strong advocate for First Nations health and environmental responsibility, John sits Premier’s Cabinet for Smoke-Free Ontario, Ontario’s Expert Panel on Climate Change and the Ontario Biodiversity Council.

 

Beaucage has previously served as the Lake Huron regional Board Member for the Union of Ontario Indians, and presently sits on the Chief’s Committee that provides advice and direction to the Anishinabek Nation self-government negotiations with Canada.

 

In addition to his role as Grand Council Chief, Beaucage is also the President of the Anishinabek Nation Management Group Inc. and the Anishinabek Nation Seventh Generation Charities.

 

Eyaabay (his traditional name) is a Pipe Carrier from the Bear Clan.  A band member of Wasauksing First Nation, he was raised on the Shawanaga First Nation and has extended family in Nipissing First Nation.

 

John and his wife Bonnie have been married for 36 years and have three children (Corey, Kimberly, Denys) and eight grandchildren.

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