Janice Makokis

Indigenous Relations/Policy Advisor; Faculty Instructor, Faculty of Extension, University of Alberta

Janice Makokis is a nehiyaw iskwew (Cree woman), and mother to son Atayoh Kan Asiniy (Spirit Rock) Makokis from Onihcikiskwapiwin (Saddle Lake Cree Nation) of Treaty No. 6 Territory, in what is now called Alberta. She holds a joint position between Yellowhead Tribal Council and the Faculty of Extension (University of Alberta) as an Indigenous Relations/Policy Advisor/Faculty Instructor, and works to develop curriculum/programming within the Faculty’s Indigenous programs. She holds a B.A. in Native Studies (minor in Political Science) from the University of Alberta, an M.A. in Indigenous Governance from the University of Victoria, and an L.L.B. (Bachelor of Laws) from the University of Ottawa. She continues to be involved in International Indigenous advocacy work through various International bodies and United Nations mechanisms to advance the discourse on Indigenous Peoples’ rights. She served as the co-chair/co-coordinator on the North American Indigenous Peoples Caucus (NAIPC) from 2013-2016—a voluntary Indigenous body that makes recommendations to the agenda items to be addressed by the United Nations Permanent Forum on Indigenous Issues. She has spent the past 15 years learning about nehiyaw (Cree) ways of being and laws from Elders and Indigenous knowledge keepers. She participates in activities/education initiatives that help advance the struggles of self-determination, Indigenous governance, and the recognition of Indigenous Treaties in Turtle Island (now called North America).