RCDSB and Algonquins of Pikwakanagan announce Indigenous Trustee

(File photo)

Algonquins of Pikwakanagan First Nation and the Renfrew County District School Board (RCDSB) have announced Christina Ruddy as the new Indigenous Trustee. Effective June 1st, 2023, at 11:30 a.m. Trustee Ruddy will be sworn in at a special meeting of the Board of Trustees. She was appointed to the role by the Algonquins of Pikwakanagan First Nation Chief and Council this May. 

The Board explains that as a proud Algonquin woman of the Algonquins of Pikwakanagan First Nation, Christina has spent her career working to empower Indigenous youth through education, art, and role modelling. Trustee Ruddy has worked in grassroots movements such as Friendship Centres, in post-secondary institutions at Georgian College, Lakehead University, and in partnership with the Ontario Ministry of Education. Since returning to the Ottawa Valley in 2012, she has become a passionate advocate for reconciliation in the National Capital Region. Trustee Ruddy is also a successful alumnus of the first graduating class of the Native Community and Social Development program from Georgian College, and in 2012 received the Board of Governor's Award of Excellence: Distinguished Alumni, for her work with Indigenous youth.

Additionally, Trustee Ruddy has collaborated with educators and administrators from multiple school boards across Turtle Island, worked as a mentor with Indigenous artists, and has shared her experiences as an Algonquin artist and researcher at several conferences. In 2018 Trustee Ruddy, along with Dr. Ruth Beatty, was awarded the Indigenous Partnership Research Award during Lakehead University's Research and Innovation awards ceremony as a testament to her leadership in this project.   

"The Algonquins of Pikwakanagan First Nation Chief and Council place our full confidence in Christina as she begins her new role representing our interests at the RCDSB helping our students to achieve their full potential," said Chief Greg Sarazin.

In 2019 Trustee Ruddy became a published contributing author with Rubicon Publishing for the publication "My Best Ideas - Math", along with several other nationally renowned STEAM leaders. In April of 2022, she was again published alongside several other Indigenous creators in a publication entitled "Resurgence" with Portage & Main publishing. 

"The Board of Trustees of the RCDSB is thrilled to once again have an Indigenous voice at our table.  We are very proud of our work to date with our Pikwakanagan partners in providing meaningful learning experiences for our students. The addition of Christina Ruddy as our new Indigenous Trustee will enhance and further support this work toward truth and reconciliation." said Susan Humphries," Chair of the Board of Trustees.

The RCDSB says they are looking forward to welcoming Trustee Ruddy to her new and important role on the RCDSB Board of Trustees, as a community leader dedicated to the preservation of Indigenous culture, and through her passion for empowering Indigenous youth to celebrate their identity, language, and culture. 

With files by CFRA's Connor Ray