N.W.T. teacher recognized with 2011 Outstanding Aboriginal Educator Award by the Canadian Teachers’ Federation

July 14, 2011
OTTAWA… An educator based in Yellowknife, N.W.T., is this year’s recipient of the Canadian Teachers’ Federation (CTF) 2011 Outstanding Aboriginal Educator Award. Nominated by the Northwest Territories Teachers’ Association (NWTTA), Di Ann Blesse has been praised by her peers and supervisors as a master teacher and skilled administrator, dedicated to students, families and communities.

“We are delighted to honour Di Ann Blesse for being such a consistent and respected voice for Aboriginal perspectives, cultural awareness and the decolonization of education,” said CTF President Mary-Lou Donnelly at the federation’s Annual General Meeting currently underway in Ottawa. “Di Ann truly epitomizes the essence of this award with her achievements throughout her 33-year career in education in teaching Kindergarten to Grade 11 as well as Adult Education.”

Blesse, who has also developed community-based education courses and lectured at the University of Saskatchewan, is known as a consummate professional, intellectually talented with boundless energy, well-honed curiosity, goal-directed self-discipline, an earthy sense of humor and absolutely dedicated to the people with and for whom she works.

This 1978 Aurora College Teacher Education Program graduate was also awarded in 1996 a Bachelor of Education degree with Great Distinction followed, in 1997, by her Master of Education degree from the University of Saskatchewan.

The Canadian Teachers’ Federation speaks for nearly 200,000 teachers in Canada as their national voice on education and related social issues. CTF membership includes teacher organizations across Canada. CTF is also a member of the international body of teachers, Education International.

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Comments: Mary-Lou Donnelly, CTF President
David Reid, NWTTA President
Media Contact: Francine Filion, Director of Communications, 613-899-4247 (cell)