The Hon. Paul Okalik, Nunavut
Okalik was chosen by his peers as the first Premier of Nunavut on
March 5, 1999. He also holds the portfolios of Executive and Intergovernmental
Affairs, Aboriginal Affairs and Justice.
Mr. Okalik was
born in Pangnirtung, Nunavut on May 26, 1964. He began his education
in Pangnirtung before moving to Iqaluit, now the capital of Nunavut,
to attend high school.
During the 1980s,
Mr. Okalik worked as Deputy Chief Negotiator and Special Assistant
to the President of Tungavik Federation of Nunavut. During this
time, Mr. Okalik participated as a member of the negotiating team
for the Nunavut Land Claim Agreement, the largest land claim in
Canadian history, signed in 1993. He further worked to ensure the
provisions of this Agreement were implemented.
Mr. Okalik was
also responsible for laying the groundwork in the creation of the
Inuit Heritage Trust, Nunavut Wildlife Management Board, Nunavut
Implementation Training Committee and Nunavut Social Development
Mr. Okalik returned
to school in the early 1990s and graduated from Carleton University
in Ottawa, Ontario with a degree in Political Science and Canadian
his studies in law at the University of Ottawa and graduated with
a degree in 1997. He received his call to the Bar on February 12,
15, 1999, the people of Iqaluit West elected Mr. Okalik to represent
them in the first Legislative Assembly of Nunavut. On March 5, 1999,
the full caucus of Nunavut Members of the Legislative Assembly choose
Mr. Okalik to be Nunavuts first Premier.
Mr. Okalik enjoys
hunting and fishing in his spare time. He is fluent in English and
Inuktitut, and converses in French.
Mr. Okalik has
two children, Shasta and Jordan.