Concordia welcomes a new senior director of Indigenous Directions and a director of decolonizing curriculum and pedagogy
Concordian Manon Tremblay (BA 03) is returning to her alma mater to advance the Indigenous Directions Action Plan and support Indigenous Directions.
The university’s new senior director of Indigenous Directions begins her five-year appointment on December 3.
A nêhiyaw iskwêw (Plains Cree woman), Tremblay brings more than 20 years of experience providing high-level strategic advising on Indigenous education, research and employment initiatives to her role.
For 15 years, she served as coordinator of Concordia’s Aboriginal Student Resource Centre (formerly the Centre for Native Education) before moving to the University of Ottawa and the Public Service Commission of Canada in senior advisor roles.
Most recently, Manon was director of Indigenous research for the Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council of Canada (SSHRC). While working for the SSHRC, Tremblay provided strategic guidance to Tri-Council presidents, members of the Canada Research Chair Coordinating Committee and the Minister of Science. She has appeared before the Canadian Senate and parliamentary standing committees.
Integrating Indigenous histories, perspectives and knowledge
Anne Whitelaw, Concordia’s interim provost and vice-president, academic, says Tremblay’s vision and expertise will benefit the university’s vibrant, dynamic and research-engaged community.
“As a Concordia alumna, Manon has the unique vantage point of having experienced the university as both a student and staff,” Whitelaw says.
“She brings an Indigenous worldview, firsthand knowledge of the university’s strengths and a commitment to advocate for more equitable and inclusive futures for Indigenous peoples.”
Whitelaw adds that Tremblay will have the full support of the president and members of the senior leadership team to ensure the successful implementation of the Indigenous Directions Action Plan.
“The Action Plan is the result of the collective work of the Indigenous Directions Leadership Council and maps Concordia’s way forward in its efforts towards decolonization and Indigenization.”
Tremblay to work closely with members of Concordia’s Indigenous community
As senior director, Tremblay will support ongoing efforts to obtain and maintain funding for research with, and by Indigenous peoples. She will also develop strategies to ensure culturally safe and respectful spaces on campus as well as support enrolment strategies to increase the number of Indigenous applicants to the university.
She will work closely with the Indigenous Directions Leadership Council and the strong team already in place at Concordia. Her work will see her partner with the special advisors to the provost, Concordia’s elder in residence, the Indigenous community liaison, the manager of the Aboriginal Student Resource Centre, the Indigenous student recruiter and the new director of decolonizing curriculum and pedagogy.
“As Concordia’s new senior director of Indigenous Directions and chair of the Indigenous Directions Leadership Council, I look forward to working alongside the university’s many inspiring and engaged students, faculty, staff and community partners, and with my colleagues whose work specifically centres on decolonizing and Indigenizing the academy,” Tremblay says.
“I’m excited about forging new collaborations and supporting existing partnerships to see our knowledge systems and protocols respectfully and meaningfully integrated within the university’s priorities, operations and structures.
“As a Concordian,” she adds, “I take special pride in being able to contribute to building long-term and mutually beneficial relationships with Indigenous communities and organizations, and championing the pursuit of excellence in higher education for our peoples.”
Donna Kahérakwas Goodleaf assumes a new role as director of decolonizing curriculum and pedagogy
Whitelaw thanks Donna Kahérakwas Goodleaf for serving as interim senior director of Indigenous Directions and welcomes her to her new role as director of decolonizing curriculum and pedagogy.
“As interim senior director of Indigenous Directions and chair of the Indigenous Directions Leadership Council, Donna provided seamless continuity and advanced the ongoing process of decolonizing and Indigenizing the university as outlined in the Indigenous Direction Action Plan.”
“I am extremely grateful for her leadership and look forward to continuing to work with Donna on building a strong curriculum and pedagogy plan for Concordia in her new role,” she says.
Whitelaw adds that she believes Manon and Donna bring complementary and critical leadership to fulfill the ambitious recommendations of the Indigenous Directions Action Plan.
“I am thrilled that Donna accepted the new position of director, decolonizing curriculum and pedagogy. This is a priority area for the university. Donna’s influence, vision and experience will be invaluable to implementing the necessary changes to ensure that Concordia’s teaching and learning practices reflect the university’s commitment to decolonization and Indigenization,” says Whitelaw.
Goodleaf begins her new role on December 3 and reports to Sandra Gabriele, vice-provost, Innovation in Teaching and Learning.
Find out more about Concordia’s Indigenous Directions.