Published on July 29, 2021 by Ontario Aboriginal Housing Services

The Ontario Aboriginal Housing Services (OAHS) is pleased to announce new appointments to our Board of Directors.  The OAHS is made up of three Ontario provincial organizations: the Métis Nation of Ontario (MNO), the Ontario Federation of Indigenous Friendship Centres (OFIFC), and the Ontario Native Women’s Association (ONWA).

We are pleased to announce that Cora McGuire-Cyrette, Executive Director of ONWA, is the newly elected OAHS’ Board Chair. Cora has been involved with OAHS since 2008 in varying capacities from governance and leadership to leading community engagements that led to the development of key OAHS frameworks. We look forward to her leadership!

“I’m honoured and humbled to take on this leadership role, as I believe in not only the vision of the organization but also the work on the ground in communities all across Ontario. Providing safe and affordable housing is a basic human right that is, unfortunately, not widely accessible within all of our communities, and we as an organization are working on changing this story.”

Gertie Mai Muise, Executive Director of the OFIFC, is the newly elected OAHS’ Vice Chair. Gertie is a new member of our Board of Directors, and we are thrilled about her appointment on our Board and her new role at the OFIFC.

They will be supported by the other Board Directors, Joanne Meyer, OAHS Treasurer, and Chief Operating Officer at MNO, Jennifer Dockstader, President of OFIFC, and Dr. Dawn Lavell-Harvard, President of ONWA.

This year, OAHS will be losing a long-standing member of our Board of Directors.

Chi’ Miigwetch and Niá:wen to our Founding Chair, Sylvia Maracle, on her retirement from our Board of Directors and her position at the OFIFC as Executive Director. Sylvia has been on OAHS’ Board since its inception in 1994 and has been a beacon of support and strength of our organization. We have been honoured to have her lead the good work OAHS continues to do. Having overseen the reach of the OAHS over the past 27 years, Sylvia is proud of the impact the organization has had at the community level in developing inclusive housing, rooted in culture, and that meets the diverse needs of all members of our communities.

As a result of their advocacy, lobbying, and endless negotiations that occurred under the leadership of Sylvia and Dawn, and (our much missed) former Executive Director Don McBain, OAHS has been able to grow and flourish to become the largest Indigenous housing provider in the Province.  They have left the organization in good hands which will be part of their enduring legacy.

OAHS is proud of its history and we look forward to our future and what we can accomplish.