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Keynote speaker: Valerie Gideon, Ph.D.

Valerie Gideon

Deputy Minister, Crown-Indigenous Relations and Northern Affairs Canada and President of the Federal Economic Development Agency for Northern Ontario

Dr. Valerie Gideon is a member of the Mi’kmaq Nation of Gesgapegiag, Quebec and a proud mother of 2 young girls.  

She became Deputy Minister of Crown-Indigenous Relations and Northern Affairs Canada on November 25, 2023, and kept her position as President of the Federal Economic Development Agency for Northern Ontario. From September 2020 to October 2022, Valerie was the Associate Deputy Minister of Indigenous Services Canada. From 2018 to 2020, she was the Senior Assistant Deputy Minister, First Nations and Inuit Health Branch (FNIHB), Indigenous Services Canada. From 2012 to 2017, Valerie held the position of Assistant Deputy Minister, Regional Operations, Health Canada. From 2011 to 2012, she was Director General, Strategic Policy, Planning and Analysis at FNIHB. From 2007 to 2010, she held the position of Regional Director for First Nations and Inuit Health, Ontario Region, Health Canada.  

Before working at Health Canada, her experience consisted mainly of working in First Nations health advocacy as Senior Director of Health and Social Development at the Assembly of First Nations and Director of the First Nations Centre at the National Aboriginal Health Organization. She was named Chair of the Aboriginal Peoples’ Health Research Peer Review Committee of the Canadian Institutes of Health Research in 2004.  

She graduated from McGill University (Montreal) in 2000 with a Doctorate (Dean’s List) in Communications (dissertation on telehealth and citizen empowerment). She previously completed a Master of Arts in 1996 at McGill. She’s a founding member of the Canadian Society of Telehealth. She’s also a former board member of the National Capital Region Young Men’s Christian Association and Young Women’s Christian Association. 

Participating in: Day 2 – Opening plenary

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