Student Information for Winter 2023 – IMPORTANT UPDATES

President’s Office

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President’s Office

President 

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Dr. Jacqueline Ottmann

Dr. Jacqueline Ottmann is Anishinaabe (Saulteaux) from Fishing Lake First Nation in Saskatchewan. Prior to her academic career, Jackie was an elementary, high school teacher and principal. She remains an engaged scholar alongside her responsibilities as a senior academic leader. While at the University of Calgary, she was the Coordinator of the First Nations, Métis, Inuit undergraduate teacher education program, and Director of Indigenous Education Initiatives within the Werklund School of Education (WSE). She also co-chaired the WSE Indigenous Strategy, and alongside the Provost, the university-wide Indigenous Strategy.

After her time with the University of Saskatchewan as Professor and Vice-Provost Indigenous Engagement, Jacqueline Ottmann was appointed President of the First Nations University of Canada. Ottmann has been recognized as an international researcher, advocate, and change-maker whose purpose is to transform practices inclusive of Indigenous leadership, methodologies, and pedagogies. Jacqueline is driven to create schools and communities that foster a deeper sense of belonging and appreciation for Indigenous peoples – their histories, stories, ways of knowing and being. Ottmann is also the first Indigenous person to become President of the Canadian Society for the Study of Education.

Vice-President, Academic (Interim)

December 1, 2022 – June 30, 2023

Dr. Jesse Archibald Barber

Dr. Jesse Archibald-Barber is the Program Coordinator and a Professor of Indigenous Literatures in English at the First Nations University of Canada. He is originally from Regina, where he began his post-secondary studies at the Saskatchewan Indian Federated College (SIFC) before completing his BA in English Literature at the University of Victoria and his graduate degrees at the University of Toronto. Since 2007, he has taught English and Indigenous Literature at the First Nations University of Canada, where he has previously served as head of the Indigenous arts and culture programs. 

Jesse is the editor of kisiskâciwan: Indigenous Voices from Where the River Flows Swiftly, an anthology of Saskatchewan Indigenous writings, released in June 2018, amongst other selected publications throughout his academic career. Jesse was also a co-writer and producer of the Making Treaty 4 performance project. His forthcoming publication examines Cree Star stories, to be released early in 2023. 

Vice President, Finance & Administration 

Jason Wong, MBA, M.Ed.

Jason Wong is a proud citizen of the Gitxsan Nation, located in BC, and has completed an Executive Master of Business Administration in Indigenous Business and Leadership. Jason has complemented his business education with Indigenous governance & law, economic development, and nation rebuilding. Additionally, Jason has 22+ years of practical business experience, with the past 15 years focusing on Indigenous education, skills training, and community development. 

Jason has held the position of Vice President, Finance & Administration since June 2019. 

Vice President, University Relations

Gord Hunchak

Gord Hunchak joined First Nations University of a Canada in 2022 in the inaugural role of Vice President University Relations.

Gord is an innovative and collaborative leader with vast and diverse experience spanning over three decades. Born and raised in Saskatchewan, Gord’s career in the post-secondary leadership began in Ontario in 2007 at Niagara College, where he took on several roles, culminating in the AVP, Planning and Communications position. Gord joined Brock University in 2015 as Associate Vice President, External Relations.

Prior to joining us at FNUniv, Gord’s most recent role was as Associate Vice President Strategic Communications / Chief Communications Officer at the University of Saskatchewan.

In all previous post-secondary leadership roles, Gord has successfully re-branded and re-positioned the respective institutions for enhanced profile and growth, and developed important stakeholder and community engagement strategies.

Director of Finance 

Shannon St.Onge, CPA, CGA

Shannon St.Onge joined First Nations University of Canada in 2019 as Director of Finance. In her current role, Ms. St.Onge is responsible for leading the finance department and providing strategic financial leadership to the executive team. Shannon provides exemplary financial stewardship with a keen focus on sustainability, alignment to strategic goals and our responsibility to stakeholders. 

Ms. St.Onge has over 10 years’ experience in financial and organizational management. Prior to joining First Nations University of Canada, she was an audit manager for not-for-profit organizations where she oversaw audit processes, made recommendations on policies and ensured the fulfillment of compliance reports.

Shannon holds a Bachelor of Commerce, with a specialization in Accounting from Laurentian University and the Chartered Professional Accountant designation. 

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