Canadian Inuit leader Jose Kusugak to receive Order of Nunavut posthumously


Inuit leader Jose Kusugak in 2010 documentary Losing their Words. Image RCI.It was announced Wednesday that Canadian Inuit leader Jose Kusugak will be appointed to the Order of Nunavut posthumously.

Kusugak was known throughout the circumpolar world for his work promoting Inuit culture and rights. He was also one of Canada’s most outspoken advocates for standardizing the Inuit language and writing system.

His views on this controversial question were featured in the 2010 documentary “Losing their Words” and the feature story “Speaking the Same Language.”

Kusugak died in January 2011.

Two others will be invested to the Order: the late Mark Kalluak, an educator and translator, and Reverend Michael Gardener, a retired Anglican minister who worked for more than 50 years in the territory of what is now Nunavut.

The Order of Nunavut was established in 2010 to recognize people who have made significant contributions to the cultural, social or economic life of Nunavut.

Kusugak, Kalluak and Gardener will be the first-ever recipients. The investiture ceremony will take place this fall. 


Eilís Quinn, Eye on the Arctic

Eilís Quinn, Eye on the Arctic

Eilís Quinn is a journalist and manages Radio Canada International’s Eye on the Arctic news cooperation project.

Eilís has reported from the Arctic regions of all eight circumpolar countries and has produced numerous documentary and multimedia series about climate change and the issues facing Indigenous peoples in the North.

Her investigative report "Death in the Arctic: A community grieves, a father fights for change," about the violent death of Robert Adams, a 19-year-old Inuk man from Arctic Quebec, received an honourable mention for excellence in reporting on violence and trauma at the 2019 Dart Awards in New York City.

Her multimedia project on the health challenges in the Canadian Arctic, "Bridging the Divide," was a finalist at the 2012 Webby Awards.

Eilís has worked for media organizations in Canada and the United States and as a TV host for the Discovery/BBC Worldwide series "Best in China."

Twitter: @Arctic_EQ

Email: eilis.quinn(at)

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