“George Brown College is the perfect environment to celebrate diversity, gender and race. I can be free to be me here and welcome others to do the same.” - Gloria Harris, Student Support Officer
Pauline Shirt was born and raised in Saddle Lake Reserve, Alberta. She is greatly recognized for her commitment to the Toronto Indigenous community and for her dedication as a teacher and lecturer since the late sixties. A member of the Three Fires Society and the Buffalo Dance Society, Pauline is also a founder of the First Nations School and the Red Willow. Today, Pauline serves as a mentor to many Indigenous youth and young families as an experienced and trusted Grandmother. She also works in all levels of government conducting opening prayers and attending meetings; making sure the Indigenous community is positively recognized as she offers a voice for her people.
As an Indigenous counsellor, Lori helps to retain and advocate for Indigenous students at the college, making them feel comfortable and giving them a sense of belonging while they are on campus. Since arriving at George Brown College more than 20 years ago, she has had a profound impact on the integration and enrolment rate of Indigenous students. Lori has also played an instrumental role in the establishment of two student centres for our Indigenous students and secured the necessary funding for a Knowledge & Wisdom Keeper. In addition, she provides enormous assistance to Indigenous students in the administration of bursaries. Outside of her counsellor duties, Lori provides assistance to other Indigenous Education & Services staff, serves on numerous external boards and committees and teaches the General Introduction to Indigenous Studies course. Lori brings with her a BA in Sociology from Trent University and is currently pursuing her Masters through Central Michigan College.
Robert (Bob) Crawford
Robert (Bob) Crawford is from the Algonquin Nation and is Turtle Clan. As the Indigenous Counsellor at George Brown College, Bob brings with him thirteen years as a therapist in the Indigenous Services unit of the Centre for Addiction & Mental Health (CAMH). He has over 25 years of experience in leadership positions in various mental health, child welfare and addiction settings. His past work includes consultation and training on Indigenous multi-generational trauma issues for numerous child welfare agencies including Hamilton, London, Peel and Simcoe County Children’s Aid Societies. Bob has developed curriculum and training manuals for Indigenous/non-Indigenous agencies and communities in regards to health care, child welfare and historical trauma. Additionally, Bob is the former Chief of the Ardoch Algonquin First Nation and has sat on numerous boards of directors including Anishnawbe Health as president, Algonquin Nation Land Claim Negotiations Directorate executive board member and Native Earth Performing Arts, Toronto board member.
Gloria Harris is a member of the Missanabie Cree First Nation, who originate from James Bay, Mushkegowuk Cree territory. She is a graduate from the Bachelor of Education program specializing in Indigenous Adult Education at Brock University. Her work at George Brown College began in September 2012 by teaching in the Assaulted Women and Children’s Counsellor/Advocate program and grew to include her participation as a member of the Indigenous Education & Services team. Previously, Gloria worked for 26 years in a Northern Ontario shelter for women and children before moving to Toronto to complete her educational goals. Gloria is chair of the Anti-Violence Counsellor/Advocate Certificate educational program, a mentor within a branch of Outside Looking In, in the Future Leaders program and a board member of the Missanabie Cree Development Corporation. Gloria takes great pride in her Mushkegowuk Cree heritage and participates in ceremonies and cultural gatherings of all nations.
Jolene is Ojibwe from White Fish River Birch Island. She graduated from the Community Worker program at George Brown College in 2010 and was on the Dean’s List each semester. The first elected Indigenous student representative to sit on the Student Association board of George Brown College, Jolene completed a yearlong placement with Indigenous Education & Services, where she is now currently employed. For more than six years Jolene has worked at George Brown College, helping students with the application process, band funding, career goals and volunteering opportunities. She also works closely with the Knowledge & Wisdom Keeper with cultural teachings, the annual Pow Wow and event planning. Jolene has demonstrated outstanding commitment to George Brown College, as well as to the Indigenous community. She is always willing and eager to help students.