Jean Teillet Awarded Indigenous Peoples’ Council Designation

Jean Teillet
(Center) Jean Teillet, Métis lawyer and recipient of IPC Award, (left) Jason Madden,
Métis lawyer, (right) MNO President Gary Lipinski.

Ottawa, ON --- Métis Nation of Ontario (MNO) President Gary Lipinski, on behalf of Ontario Métis, offered his congratulations to Métis lawyer Jean Teillet for being awarded the designation of Indigenous Peoples’ Council (IPC) by the Indigenous Bar Association (IBA). Jean has been legal counsel for the MNO since its creation in the early 1990s.

The IPC is awarded annually to an Indigenous lawyer in recognition of outstanding achievements in the practice of law. In particular, the IPC award takes into account the manner in which the individual pursues the goals and objectives of the IBA and serves his or her community and the Creator with honour and integrity. Previous designations include: Wilton Littlechild, Roberta Jamieson, Paul Chartrand, David Nahwegahbow, Delia Opekokew, James [Sákéj] Youngblood Henderson, Don Worme, Mary Ellen Turpel-Lafonde, Roger Jones, Darlene Johnson, Mark Stevenson and Justice Murray Sinclair.

Jean was acknowledged for her well-known legal work on behalf of Aboriginal peoples generally and the Métis people specifically.  Just some of her work includes:

  • acting as lead counsel at all levels of court in R. v. Powley – the first Métis rights case to be heard by the Supreme Court of Canada based on s. 35 of The Constitution Act, 1982;
  • appearing before the Supreme Court of Canada and almost all levels of courts in Ontario, Manitoba, Saskatchewan, Alberta, British Columbia, Yukon and NWT on behalf of Aboriginal peoples;
  • acting as counsel for Aboriginal peoples in various modern day treaty making processes, including, the Tlicho in NWT and the Stó:lō in British Columbia;
  • participating and speaking at conferences on Aboriginal issues as well as teaching on Aboriginal legal issues at various universities and colleges across Canada; and
  • acting as a mentor to other Aboriginal law students and lawyers.

MNO President Lipinski said, “I am pleased to see the Indigenous Bar recognize Jean for her passion and groundbreaking work on behalf of the Métis Nation and other Aboriginal peoples in this country.  It is a designation that is well-deserved, and I am proud that the Métis Nation’s own lawyer was recognized amongst other exceptional legal minds.”

The Métis are a distinct Aboriginal people with a unique culture, language and heritage who played an instrumental role in shaping Canada, and who work tirelessly with their fellow Canadians to share their culture, traditions and knowledge of the environment. The MNO represents Métis citizens and communities throughout the province of Ontario.

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