Sheryl Lightfoot

Sheryl Lightfoot joined the Providence Health Care Board in 2018.

Sheryl Lightfoot is Anishinaabe, a citizen of the Lake Superior Band of Ojibwe, enrolled at the Keweenaw Bay Indian Community in Baraga, Michigan. She feels incredibly honoured to live and work on the traditional, ancestral and unceded territory of the Musqueam people.

Currently serving as Senior Advisor to the President on Indigenous Affairs at the University of British Columbia, Dr. Lightfoot is part of the team charged with implementing UBC’s 2018 Indigenous Strategic Plan. She is also Canada Research Chair in Global Indigenous Rights and Politics and holds appointments as associate professor in both First Nations and Indigenous Studies and the Department of Political Science.

Dr. Lightfoot holds a PhD in Political Science, with specialties in International Relations and Comparative Politics, from the University of Minnesota. She also holds an MA from the Hubert H. Humphrey Institute of Public Affairs at the University of Minnesota, with specialties in Foreign Policy and International Affairs, and Economic and Community Development. She has fifteen years of volunteer and contract work experience with numerous American Indian tribes and community-based organizations in the Minneapolis-St. Paul area, including nine years as Chair of the Board of the American Indian Policy Center, a research and advocacy group.

Dr. Lightfoot’s research focuses on Indigenous politics, especially Indigenous rights, and their implementation in global, national and regional contexts. Her 2016 book, Global Indigenous Politics: A Subtle Revolution, focused on the United Nations Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples and its potential to re-shape Indigenous-state relationships in Canada and globally. She is currently conducting two major, funded research projects, The Politics of Indigenous Apologies, a multi-national comparative study of state apologies to Indigenous peoples, and Complex Sovereignties, which examines innovative self-determination practices of Indigenous peoples in comparative and global perspective. She is also involved a UBC research cluster, Global Challenges to Democracy, where she is taking up questions surrounding the implementation of Indigenous rights in advanced democracies.