Lana Ray nindizhnikaaz. Waaskone Giizhigook niintigo, Oshowkinoozhe n’dodem, Opwaaganasiniing nindoonjibaa. Geniin bangiins nindoonjibwem.
Hello, my name is Lana Ray. My spirit name is “the light that shines”. I am a member of the muskellunge clan. I am from the place of the pipestone (the community associated with this name is Red Rock Indian Band; however the Traditional territory that governs me expands far beyond the boundaries of the reserve). Also, I speak a little Anishinaabemowin.
I am an Associate Professor in the Department of Indigenous Learning, Indigenous Research Chair in Decolonial Futures and Director of the Anishinaabe Kendaasiwin Institute (AKI) at Lakehead University. Previously I worked in the public and not-for profit sectors, including as the Director of Policy and Research at a provincial Indigenous organization. I do this work to contribute to the movement put into motion by mindimooyeyag, akiwenziiyag, Indigenous communities, grassroots leaders, and Indigenous scholars to advance Indigenous social, cultural and political realities through resurgent and decolonial praxis.
This quote inspires me to do my work:
“In the future, our descendants will be sitting around a fire in their lodges telling this story of when the two legged tried to destroy the earth. We are no doubt in a sacred legend that will be told for thousands of years. For whatever reasons, we have been specifically placed here on earth to participate in this incredibly sacred time. We need to believe in what our heart tells us and to find the strength to follow it. This sacred story needs heroes and we are the chosen ones. Rise strong and never stop believing in the great power of the earth. We are completely surrounded by our ancestors” -Isaac MurdochCited by Winona Laduke in ‘To be a Water Protector’