Truth and Reconciliation Commission to begin work on June 1: Canada announces final appointments

    OTTAWA, May 13 /CNW Telbec/ - The Honourable Chuck Strahl, Minister of
Indian Affairs and Northern Development and Federal Interlocutor for Métis and
Non-Status Indians today announced the final two appointments for the Indian
Residential Schools Truth and Reconciliation Commission (IRSTRC).
    Jane Brewin Morley and Claudette Dumont-Smith are being appointed as
Commissioners, and together with the Chair of the Commission, Justice Harry
LaForme, they will begin their work on June 1, 2008. Justice Harry LaForme was
appointed as Chair of the Commission in April 2008.
    "I am honoured to appoint these two highly respected women who have both
served in many esteemed professional and public positions. Their extensive
experience and considerable knowledge will be invaluable," said Minister
Strahl. "Soon these highly respected Commissioners will begin their work, and
former students who had been victimized by Residential Schools will have the
opportunity to come forward and ensure their stories are heard and recorded in
    The Commission will research and examine the conditions that gave rise to
the Indian Residential Schools legacy. It will be an opportunity for people to
share their experiences about a sad part of Canadian history that is still
unknown to most Canadians.
    The Chair and the Commissioners were chosen from more than
300 submissions received in response to a public call for nominations. A
Selection Panel, which included representatives from national Aboriginal
Organizations, Church entities and Government, reviewed the submissions. "I
would also like to extend my gratitude to the highly esteemed members of the
Selection Panel for their dedication and hard work", added Minister Strahl.

    Biographical Notes


                             Jane Brewin Morley

    Jane Brewin Morley is a lawyer, a facilitator, a mediator, an arbitrator,
and a public policy advisor. Ms. Morley began her career in law with Pearlman
& Lindholm of Victoria and continued with them as an associate until 1976,
when she formed the law firm of Brewin, McCallum, Milne and Morley.
    Ms. Brewin Morley has served in many professional and public positions:
Governor of the Law Foundation of B.C. (1991 - 1999, Chair 1998 - 1999);
public representative on the Counsel of the College of Physicians & Surgeons
of British Columbia (1994 - 2001) and Chair of the Jericho Individual
Compensation Panel, a redress program for victims of institutional sexual
abuse at the Jericho School for the Deaf and Blind (1996 - 2001). In 1993, she
was honoured with an appointment as Queen's Council (Q.C.).
    Ms. Brewin Morley was also the Official Trustee of the Legal Services
Society (2002 - 2003) and President of the BC Mediator Roster Society (2002 -
2006) and is currently a board member of the BC Dispute Resolution Practicum
Society. From 2003 to 2006, she was the Child and Youth Officer for British
Columbia. In 2007, Ms. Brewin Morley was appointed as an adjudicator for the
Independent Assessment Program under the Indian Residential Schools Settlement
    Ms. Brewin Morley holds a Master of Arts in Political Science from the
University of Toronto and a Bachelor of Law from Queen's University at


                           Claudette Dumont-Smith

    Claudette Dumont-Smith has been actively involved in the field of
Aboriginal health since 1974. She is a registered nurse and has acted in
various executive capacities with the Aboriginal Nurses Association of Canada
and the National Aboriginal Child Care Commission. Ms. Dumont-Smith has
moderated health conferences across Canada and has collaborated on a number of
papers and manuals about various aspects of Aboriginal health care programs.
    Ms. Dumont-Smith has served as a member of the Aboriginal circle of the
Canadian Panel on Violence Against Women by the Aboriginal Nurses Association
of Canada and as Associate Commissioner for the National Aboriginal Child Care
Commission of the Native Council of Canada.
    Ms. Dumont-Smith is also an accomplished writer / researcher whose
articles on a wide range of topics have been published by the Health Council
of Canada, and the Aboriginal Healing Foundation, among others.
    Ms. Dumont-Smith holds her Master's degree in Public Administration from
Queen's University, Kingston and also holds a Bachelor of Science in Nursing
from the University of Québec, Gatineau.

For further information:

For further information: Josée Bellemare, Press Secretary, Office of the
Honourable Chuck Strahl, (819) 997-0002; Kimberly Phillips, Office of the
Interim Executive Director, Indian Residential Schools Truth and
Reconciliation Commission, (613) 219-5872

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