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Grand Chief Stan Beardy announces candidacy Regional Chief of Ontario

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THUNDER BAY,ON  –- May 13, 2012 ----   Nishnawbe Aski Nation (NAN) Grand Chief Stan Beardy has formally announced his candidacy for Regional Chief Beardy runs for Regional Chief of Ontarioof Ontario, giving incumbent Angus Toulouse his first challenger.

In his efforts to advocate on behalf of the 49 chiefs in NAN, Stan Beardy has a long list of achievements that span over 20 years in political office, both as NAN Grand Chief and as Chief of Muskrat Dam, his home community. These achievements include:

        • Reaching out to the Ontario, Canadian and international communities
        • Partnering with Lieutenant Governor of Ontario on establishing literacy programs in First Nations
        • Initiated Project Beyshick
        • Creating Youth, Elders’ and Women’s councils to advise the Executive
        • Enhancing the Junior Rangers program
        • Incorporating NAN First Nations as an intrical part in the planning for affordable electrical energy, generation and transmission as economic engines and establishing potential for all weather roads

As Ontario Regional Chief, Beardy will continue to forge meaningful relationships with governments, industry and commerce on First Nation terms, and to First Nation benefits. Beardy will continue to fight for Ontario First Nations’ fair share of the great wealth in timber, energy, minerals, and water that exist in First Nation lands throughout Ontario. In the office of Regional Chief, Beardy will continue to work with First Nations in Ontario to see the communities and people become key actors in the protection and management and development of those resources and equitable participants in the wealth created from them. As Regional Chief, Beardy will also advocate for the following:

        • Increasing First Nations’ Profile both nationally and internationally
        • Establishing Ontario wide economic plan between First Nations and industry, private sector, manufacturers and government
        • Networking with learning institutions for First Nations
        • Developing support for partnerships for First Nations with private sector and industry
        • Protecting further erosion of our Aboriginal and Treaty rights
        • Pushing for recognition of First Nations/Treaty Territories jurisdiction and authority
        • Ensuring that our children and students have access to quality education from kindergarten to university

“As a leader, I have been shaped by the direction of the Chiefs, the advice of the Elders, conversations with women and youth in our communities; and by the wisdom of leaders of First Nations and indigenous people, in Ontario, across Canada and as far away as New Zealand,” said Beardy. “I believe that we have the courage and the human, natural and cultural resources to build our Nations as they should have developed before the interference of colonization. As Regional Chief, I will fight for each First Nation and for all First Nations while respecting their autonomy and assisting them to build the protocols that will make their joint strength greater.”    

The election for Regional Chief will take place at the Chiefs of Ontario conference June 26-28, 2012 in Toronto.

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