AMC Congratulates Cindy Woodhouse as the Newly Elected National Chief of the Assembly of First Nations

December 7, 2023

Treaty One Territory, Manitoba

AMC Communications

Unceded Anishinabe Algonquin Territory – The Assembly of Manitoba Chiefs (AMC) congratulates and welcomes Cindy Woodhouse as the newly elected National Chief of the Assembly of First Nations (AFN). Chiefs and Proxies from various regions across the country convened in Ottawa this week to cast their votes in this significant election.

“I extend my heartfelt congratulations to National Chief Woodhouse,” said AMC Grand Chief Cathy Merrick. “There have been significant milestones for Canada in the past year, including the election of the first Anishinaabe premier in Manitoba, the election of the first female Grand Chief for the AMC, and now the election of a new National Chief for the AFN who comes from Manitoba, and I am confident in the decision made today. National Chief Woodhouse’s vast knowledge and experience will undoubtedly impact the policies and legislation affecting First Nations, and she has already proven her commitment to advancing the rights of First Nations Peoples across Turtle Island.”

The AMC acknowledges National Chief Woodhouse’s leadership in advocating for First Nations’ rights, notably leading a $23-billion settlement for the underfunded provincial child welfare system, which was approved earlier this year. We look forward to meeting with the National Chief to align our efforts in advocating for the rights of First Nations citizens, addressing pivotal issues like MMIWG, treaty rights, healthcare, and engagements with federal and provincial governments.

Sixty-two of the sixty-three First Nations in Manitoba attended the AFN Special Assembly to decide the future of the AFN. During the first round, 444 of 461 registered voters cast their ballots. The second round saw 432 votes cast of the 461 registered voters, while the third round saw 407 votes out of the total registered voters, slightly increasing to 423 voters for the fourth round, and 411 for the fifth round. National Chief Cindy Woodhouse was announced as the new National Chief on the morning of December 7 after runner-up, David Pratt, conceded this morning before the seventh ballot was to start.

The AMC thanks the Acting National Chief Joanna Bernard for her dedicated service within the AFN during her time in office. We also wish to acknowledge and thank the candidates who stepped up to carry out this work for First Nations across Canada: Sheila North, David Pratt, Craig Makinaw, Dean Sayers, and Reginald Bellerose.

For more information, please contact:

Communications Team
Assembly of Manitoba Chiefs

About the Assembly of Manitoba Chiefs

The AMC was formed in 1988 by the Chiefs in Manitoba to advocate on issues that commonly affect First Nations in Manitoba. AMC is an authorized representative of 62 of the 63 First Nations in Manitoba with a total of more than 171,000 First Nation citizens in the province, accounting for approximately 12 percent of the provincial population. AMC represents a diversity of Anishinaabe (Ojibway), Nehetho / Ininew (Cree), Anishininew (Ojibwe-Cree), Denesuline (Dene) and Dakota Oyate (Dakota) peoples.