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Wilfrid Laurier University Vice President: Academic & Provost
April 17, 2014
Canadian Excellence
Jean Becker

Ms. Jean Becker

Senior Advisor: Aboriginal Initiatives

Contact Information
Phone: 519-884-0710 ext.4084
Fax: 519-746-2472
Office Location: 165 Albert Street, room 1-01



Jean is of Innu, Inuit and English ancestry and a member of the Nunatsiavut Territory of Labrador. Jean has a Masterís degree in Sociology and Anthropology from the University of Guelph.

A grandmother, she is a strong advocate for women and children, and for the revitalization of Aboriginal traditions, ceremonies and spirituality and participates in ceremonial life in the community regularly. She has a particular interest in justice for Aboriginal adoptees who were removed from their families and communities and culture. Her current research interest is Fetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorder.

After four years as the Elder-in-Residence with the Aboriginal Field of Study, Faculty of Social Work at Laurier, Jean assumed the position of Senior Advisor: Aboriginal Initiatives. In this role she works with a team of aboriginal staff to create services, a welcoming space and curriculum for aboriginal students at Laurier and advocate for them in the institution. She also lectures and leads workshops in universities and other organizations encompassing Aboriginal history, traditional values, and contemporary issues.

For the past thirty years she has lived in the tri-cities area of Ontario where she has been very involved with the diverse Aboriginal community of the region. Jean has served on the Board of Anishnabeg Outreach, a Kitchener Aboriginal employment agency, volunteered with the Native Sons at the Guelph Correctional Centre, the Native Social Worker Program at Guelph Family and Childrenís Service Agency, and the Native Sisterhood at the Grand Valley Institute for Women. She is the former chair of SUNDANCe (Shared Universities Native Development & Navigation Committee). In 2003, Jean was awarded a Guelph YMCA Women of Distinction Award for her service to the community. In 2008 she received a Women of Distinction award from Zonta.