Former Commissioners

James B. (Jamie) Wilson, B.A., U.S.T.C., M.Ed.

commissioner_photo_colourTreaty Commissioner Jamie Wilson is a progressive, young leader, originally from the Opaskwayak Cree Nation, who moves with equal ease in both First Nations and non-Indigenous communities.

He is an educator, a former Ranger in the US military’s Special Operations and, recently, he graduated from the Executive Program at the Stanford Graduate School of Business in California.

Possessing a warrior spirit, Jamie is a high calibre triathlete and crossfit competitor. On Ancestral lands, he is an award-winning environmentalist and survivalist who teaches the traditional ways of land navigation, and subsistence living. He has also long advocated for the equality of women in ceremony and in leadership.

Jamie’s greatest leadership strengths are as a facilitator and relationship builder where his calm and thoughtful demeanor enables him to navigate complex discussions and often highly charged situations, to positive and successful outcomes.

Jamie earned his B.A. at the University of Winnipeg and his M.Ed. Administration from the University of Manitoba. He also holds a U.S Multi-Subject Teaching Credential from California State University and possesses K-12 teaching experience in public school systems: on-reserve and U.S. charter schools.

In 2010, the Government of Canada appointed Jamie as Treaty Commissioner of the Treaty Relations Commission of Manitoba, a neutral body mandated to encourage discussion, facilitate public understanding, and enhance mutual respect between all peoples in Manitoba. In 2012, he was a recipient of the Queen’s Diamond Jubilee medal for Community Service.

Treaty Commissioner Wilson is a columnist for the Winnipeg Free Press and is regularly called upon by local and national media for his views on a wide range of Treaty-related matters, education and business issues. Jamie is married to Kristin Erickson and, together, they have three children.

Life is nothing without a challenge which is why Wilson often quotes one of his old sergeants who said, “When you die, make sure it’s the last thing you have left to do.”

Dennis White Bird

Dennis_White_BirdDennis White Bird is an Anishinaabe from the Rolling River First Nation and is proud to say that the Anishinaabe language is his first language.

Dennis worked as a teacher for seven years before he was called to take a leadership role within his community. During his 18 years as the Chief of Rolling River, Commissioner White Bird successfully negotiated a Treaty Land Entitlement agreement with Canada and Manitoba. His community was the first to ratify the agreement.

Upon leaving the position within his community, Mr. White Bird’s leadership responsibilities grew as he was elected as Regional Chief for the Manitoba region within the national First Nation organization: the Assembly of First Nations. As Regional Chief, he was appointed the Executive Member in Charge of Treaties and was very involved in the promotion of First Nation languages.

Mr. White Bird was elected to the position of Grand Chief of the Assembly of Manitoba Chiefs in August 2000. Throughout his term as Grand Chief, Commissioner White Bird showed a strong interest in promoting First Nations youth issues and worked closely with the Manitoba First Nations Youth Council, an initiative of the Assembly of Manitoba Chiefs.

Dennis White Bird was appointed Treaty Relations Commissioner for Manitoba in June 2005 by a federal Order-in-Council. The appointment is a natural progression for a man who has shown a great interest and dedication to the fulfillment of the true spirit and intent of the Treaty relationship and the education of both First Nation and non-First Nation youth.