Updates & Annoucements

Logo 5 (6)October 2018 – Call for nominations is now closed.

Recipients will be announced the week of December 17.

Nominate a student enrolled in grade 6 to 12 or a youth between the ages of 10 to 20 years old by Friday November 30. 

The Awards were created in 2011 in honour of Madam Justice Beverly Browne, who sat as a Territorial Court Judge in the Northwest Territories from 1990 until 1999 before becoming the first Senior Judge of the unified Nunavut Court of Justice upon Nunavut’s creation until  2009. Learn more including how to nominate.

Learn more about the logo.

October 2018Lucien Ukaliannuk Award 

The Law Foundation is pleased to announce 8 recipients residing or with long standing ties to Nunavut. Learn more.  

February 2018 – The Foundation supports the Nunavut Law Program

The Law Foundation recently approved a $15,000 grant to support the Nunavut Law Program. The grant will go toward providing emergency funding for students in need and for cultural programming.

Read the letter from Dean Martin Philipson from the College of Law, University of Saskatchewan.

November 2017 – The Foundation welcomes a new Director to its Board.

Kyle DeYoung of Iqaluit is appointed as a Director of the Law Foundation.

Learn more about our current Directors and Chairperson.


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September 2017 – Upinnaqtuq Awards  Recipients are:

  • Sarah Enoogoo, Grade 12 from Pond Inlet
  • Deanna Kooneeliusie, Grade 12 from Qikiqtarjuak
  • Linda Kopalie, Grade 11 from Qikiqtarjuak
  • Adam Jonah Nookiguak, Grade 12 from Qikiqtarjuak
  • Annie Nookiguak,  Grade 12 from Qikiqtarjuak

The Upinnaqtuq Awards were established in honour of Justice Beverly Browne, who was the first senior judge in the Nunavut Court of Justice. She demonstrated great leadership in the community and had a strong commitment and passion for working with youth. 

September 2017 Lucien Ukaliannuk Awards Recipients

The Board is delighted to award 6 deserving recipients from Nunavut currently enrolled in law or law-related studies in Nunavut, Ottawa and Victoria.

Congratulations and best of luck on your journey! Learn more.    

2016 Upinnaqtuq Award Recipients

Last year, the Foundation awarded 4 deserving youth residing in Iqaluit, Rankin Inlet and Pond Inlet. Learn more about the additional recipients below.

DSC_0259January 26, 2017 Taryn Lavallee from Iqaluit  stopped by the Law Society office this week – A deserving Upinnaqtuq Award recipient for her exceptional achievements both in sport and at school and for the important contributions she has made as a Junior Coach Assistant ( Speed Skating). Her coach John Maurice states that she is “a great ambassador for Nunavut with a very promising future ahead of you”. Well done Taryn ! A role model and inspiration for future generations to come! Congratulations!

Nolan Sammurtok RI re UA Dec 2016


Just in time to celebrate the new yearNolan Sammurtok, of Rankin Inlet (left), received a gift of his choice for the under 14 category as one of the 2016 recipient of the Upinnaqtuq Award. 

The Foundation was delighted to learn from his Inuktitut cultural teacher, Maryann Issakiark, that Nolan has been “working toward the common good” of all including by “supporting his fellow students so they could also achieve their personal goals”. A truly inspiring young man! The future looks bright. Congratulations!

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On December 19, Foundation Director Marie Belleau welcomed Colby Hickey from Iqaluit (right) to hand over his Upinnaqtuq Award.  Colby’s nomination letter from John Maurice stated ” you are a great ambassador for Nunavut with a very promising future ahead of you. Not only have you demonstrated exceptional achievements both in sport and at school, you have made important contributions as a Junior Assistant Coach for which you should be proud of. You are a role model and an inspiration for future generations to come”. The Foundation wishes you the best of luck in your future.  Congratulations!

November 2016 –   We are delighted to announce the first of 4 Upinnaqtuq Recipients : Jillian Kyak from Pond Inlet. 

Jillian KyakJillian is a deserving recipient for being “an insightful, compassionate, and positive student that has a beneficial impact on classroom dynamics and energy”. Her teachers, Jay McKechnie & Anisa Suno, have told us that “Jillian exemplifies many qualities that make her a strong student, but the kindness and respect that she shows to her peers is what makes her a leader”.

You are without a doubt an exceptional inspiration for being a “true ambassador of   peace and leadership”. Congratulations!

August 2016 –  2016 Summer and Fall Lucien Ukaliannuak Award Recipients

  • Jennifer Hunt-Poitras, law student attending the University of Victoria
  • Alyssa Spence-Flaherty, articling student
  • Sarah White, articling student

July 2016 –  Lucien Ukaliannuak 2015 Recipient completes her Masters of Law

We are delighted to announce that Gloria Song, a Lucien Ukaliannuk Recipient, has successfully completed her Master of Laws. Gloria (middle) with her mother and husband at the graduation ceremony this past June. Congratulations Gloria!

Gloria Song LLM June 2016

Gloria’s main research focused on access to justice issues in Nunavut’s employment law system and she also studied the recent settlement of NTI’s lawsuit over the implementation of the Nunavut Land Claims Agreement. We look forward to providing further updates once Gloria’s papers been published.

Finally Gloria writes:  My graduate experience has allowed me to gain a deeper understanding of the infrastructural challenges facing the territory, and it has fostered my passion for improving access to justice in Nunavut. I hope to continue to work in this area, and as such am very thankful for the Nunavut Law Foundation’s support.


CLOSED – January 2016 – UPINNAQTUQ AWARD  for Students & Youths. 

Stay tuned for the announcement of recipients in September 2016.

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The Foundation for its 5th consecutive year will be awarding scholarships to students and youths in each region across Nunavut in honour of Justice Beverly Browne, who was the first senior judge in the Nunavut Court of Justice. She demonstrated great leadership in the community and had a strong commitment and passion for working with youth.

Nominations are open for Students enrolled in grade 6 to 12 or Youths between the ages of 10 to 20 years old.


November 5 2015 – Launch of the Video Understanding the Nunavut Court Process  in all 4 languages

The Foundation is pleased to be part of this important initiative and to support access to justice initiatives that enhance public awareness and experience with the legal system as it is an important guiding principles for the work of the Foundation. Read the complete speech by Director Marie Belleau INUKENG . 

Read the Government of Nunavut’s announcement INUKENGIKW  and FR .

The video is a first step to help Nunavummiut understand the criminal court process and for complainants and other witnesses who may be called to court to testify.

ᑕᕐᕆᔭᒐᔅᓴᓕᐅᕐᓂᖅ ᑕᒪᓐᓇ ᐃᓕᓐᓂᐊᒐᔅᓴᐅᔪᖅ ᐃᓕᓐᓂᐊᕈᑕᐅᓗᓂ ᖃᓄᐃᓕᐅᖃᑦᑕᖅᑐᓂᒃ        ᐱᕋᔭᖃᑦᑕᖅᑐᓂᒃ ᐃᖅᑲᖅᑐᐃᓕᕆᓂᕐᒧᑦ.

Copies of the video can be obtained by contacting Community Justice atvictimservices@gov.nu.ca or 1866-456-5216.

ᐊᔾᔨᖏᓐᓂᒃ ᑕᕐᕆᔭᒐᔅᓴᓂᒃ ᐱᔭᐅᔪᓐᓇᖅᑐᑦ ᖃᐅᔨᒋᐊᕐᓗᑎᑦ ᓄᓇᓕᓐᓂ ᐃᖅᑲᖅᑐᓕᕆᔨᒃᑯᑦ ᐅᕙᓂ

 victimservices@gov.nu.ca ᐅᕝᕙᓘᓐᓃᑦ 1866-456-5216.

 May 30, 2015  Law Society of Nunavut AGM  –  The Foundation recognized Mandy Sammurtok (left) for her leadership and contributions as Chair of the Foundation. In particular, the Foundation drafted its first ever Strategic Plan under her leadership.  Ms. Sammurtok will continue on as a Director. Right: Marie Belleau, Director of the Foundation.

Mandy_ Marie_ lsn agm may 30 2015

November 13, 2014  2014 Upinnaqtuq Awards

The Nunavut Law Foundation is proud to announce the 2014 recipients The word “Upinnaqtuq”in Inuktitut means “to celebrate a person’s accomplishments” or “a person you are proud of”.

Celebrations in Repulse Bay for Recipient Veronica Uttak

UA 2014 Veronica_Julia (427x640)


Julia MacPHerson,Vice Principal Tusarvik School:

Veronica had a great afternoon! I started barbequing in -44 around 12:30pm. We served cheeseburgers, poutine and homemade chocolate cake to all high school students and they enjoyed a movie. (Her favourite)”.



Iqaluit Celebrations! Read more here

Iqaluit recipients (640x480) (2)

(Left to Right)
Kiyanna Drachenberg,
Margaret Gauthier, Kaj Sandbakken.


Hayden Hickey from Iqaluit
Hayden Hickey (230x400)

September 2014 Annual Canadian Law Foundations Meeting, Whitehorse, Yukon

Board member Cindy Kieu is attending the ACLF meeting this year.  Access to Justice and Family Law are some of the topics that were discussed. We will post her report shortly on our Facebook Page where  you can find photos that  highlight the vibrant Yukon First Nations culture.


           Cindy Kieu standing in front of beautiful Kwanlin Dün Cultural Centre,

Whitehorse, Yukon

May 20, 2014  UPINNAQTUQ AWARD  for Students & Youths.  We are delighted to share our new logo! 

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The logo represents the inclusion of sports, community and school into a person’s life. The symbols inside the circle represent these three aspects, showing how they are intertwined with each other. The circle represents both the world and a sun at the same time. Resting this on the shoulders of the person gives the logo an uplifting feeling, showing that accomplishments are within one’s reach.

April 2013  Official Board Member Appointment

The Law Society of Nunavut and the Nunavut Law Foundation are proud to announce the official appointment of Marie Belleau of Iqaluit, NU. 

marie belleau feb 2014

In addition to receiving a fellowship from the International Training Center of Indigenous Peoples and a B.A. in International Studies and Modern Languages from the Université Laval, Ms. Belleau received her civil (L.L.B.) and common law (J.D.) degrees from the University of Ottawa and was called to the Ontario and Nunavut Bar in 2013 after articling with Nelligan O’Brien Payne LLP in Ottawa. Ms. Belleau is currently legal counsel for Nunavut Tunngavik Inc. in Iqaluit.

As a newly called member of the Nunavut Bar and a past recipient of the Lucien Ukaliannuk Award, she will no doubt bring invaluable perspectives and provide guidance on how the Foundation can meet its mandate and increase awareness among communities, students and youth across the Territory about opportunities to receive support from the Foundation.

December 2013  Upinnaqtuq Award in honour of Justice Beverly BrowneT

he Board of Directors thanks everyone who submitted applications and came out to celebrate the 2013 local recipients this past November 29!

IMG 4 local students0037 Iqaluit Recipients attending the November 29 event 

              Left to Right :Siku Rojas, Maata Kopalie,Emma Ell and Ann-Margaret Tiglik.


 Joselyn Morrison with Iqaluit student recipient Chantel Kunuk

IMG_3 nominatorsNominators attending the November 29 event 

Left to right : James Rankin, Sherri Montone and Jeremy Smith

September 2013    Ministerial Appointment of Public Representative

The Board of Directors is pleased to announce that the Hon. Daniel Shewchuck, Minister of Justice, has appointed Ms. Wendy Kootoo-Wood, of Cambridge Bay, on September 20,2013 for a 2 year term.Ms. Kootoo-Wood brings a wide range of experience both professionally and at the community level. Her contributions to the Foundation’s mandate as a member of the public are eagerly awaited .

   Ms. Kootoo-Wood and her grandaughter Alyssa.WKW_lay member_Dec 2013

May 2013 Official Chairperson Appointment

The Nunavut Law Foundation is proud to announce the official appointment of Mandy Sammurtok as the Chairperson of the Nunavut Law Foundation. This is the first time in the Foundation’s history that an Inuk is appointed as Chairperson.Ms. Sammurtok is originally from Chesterfield Inlet, Nunavut. She received her law degree from the University of Manitoba in 2007 and was called to the bar in Manitoba in 2008, after articling with Legal Aid Manitoba. Ms. Sammurtok has been practising criminal law at Maliiganik Tukiisiniakvik in Iqaluit, Nunavut, ever since passing the Nunavut bar in 2009.Mandy Sammurtok will be appointed for a two-year term effective February 2013.

May 2013 Official Board Appointment

The Nunavut Law Foundation Board is pleased to announce the appointment of Thomas Lemon, of Toronto, Ontario, as the new Board Lawyer Member.Mr. Lemon was an original member of the Law Society of Nunavut upon its creation in 1999. His ties to the north began in 1994 with a stint with the Yellowknife office of the Federal Department of Justice as a prosecutor and subsequent circuits in the NWT, Nunavut and more recently Yukon.He began doing circuits in the Baffin region in 1997 and has continued to do so as a PPSC prosecutor and traveled to many, if not most, of the communities in Nunavut since then. His knowledge of and experience in the north will undoubtedly provide invaluable contributions to the Law Foundation’s mandate.