Biography of Grand Chief Garrison Settee

Photo above taken by George Muswaggon

Read the Grand Chief’s oath of office here.

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Garrison Settee Biography – Manitoba Keewatinowi Okimakanak Inc. (MKO) Grand Chief

Grand Chief Garrison Settee is from the Pimicikamak Cree Nation in Northern Manitoba. He is Ininiw and was born and raised in a Cree-speaking home. He was raised in a home with strong values and work ethics, where his parents instilled strong spiritual values that keep him grounded to this day.

He attended Frontier Collegiate and R.D. Parker Collegiate in Thompson and went on to obtain a Bachelor of Education degree from Brandon University.

Grand Chief Settee taught First Nation Studies and First Nation Law at the grade 12 level for many years. He introduced his students to the critical issues pertaining to Indigenous rights and treaties. Through his experiences as an educator, both students and Elders encouraged Mr. Settee to allow his name to stand for leadership at the community level.

Answering the call of his students and Elders, Garrison was first elected as Councillor and then nominated and elected as Chief of Pimicikamak. He served as Chief from 2008-2013.

During tenure on Chief and Council of the Pimicikamak Cree Nation, Mr. Settee was involved with a wide range of Councils and committees, including the Executive Council of the Assembly of Manitoba Chiefs and Manitoba Keewatinowi Okimakanak (MKO); the Assembly of First Nations Chiefs Committee on Education; school administrator; and a member of the Peace Keeper Patrol-Gang Violence Strategy.

A gifted orator, Grand Chief Settee is a strong advocate for the North. He was elected as Grand Chief of MKO in August 2018. In his leadership position, he represents 26 Northern First Nations. He is a strong advocate for missing and murdered Indigenous women, girls, and Two Spirit people; children and families impacted by the child welfare system; economic development; and education for First Nations youth. Grand Chief considers it an honour to serve Northern First Nations.

In his spare time, the Grand Chief enjoys reading non-fiction history books and biographies. He enjoys playing music and is learning to speak Anishinaabemowin. Grand Chief Settee resides in Thompson, Manitoba.

Several notable highlights include:

  • Represented MKO at UN meetings in Geneva, Switzerland and exposed Canada’s treatment of Indigenous people.
  • Represented MKO in lobbying efforts for the implementation of Jordan’s Principle, and after four days Anita Neville, MP for the Liberal Party, brought the issue of Jordan’s Principle to Parliament, and this was the first time it was mentioned in the House.
  • As Chief, Garrison was principal proponent to introduce a resolution to demand an inquiry into Missing and Murdered Indigenous Women and Girls at the Assembly of First Nations Assembly. He apologized to the women that not enough was done by the chiefs to pursue the issue of MMIWG.