Arctic Inspiration Prize grows support, sponsorship
Eva Aariak, Thomas Johnston join prize selection committee
The Arctic Inspiration Prize family is growing.
The annual $1 million prize, awarded to projects that address pressing issues facing Canada’s Arctic and its people, announced two new members to its selection committee Sept. 25.
The former premier of Nunavut, Eva Aariak, and the National Inuit Youth Council president, Thomas Anguti Johnston, will help choose this year’s award recipients.
They join current selection committee members like Inuit activist Sheila Watt Cloutier, CBC broadcaster Peter Mansbridge and former Governor General Michaëlle Jean.
The Arctic Inspiration Prize also counts new financial partners: Nunasi Corp., Kitikmeot Corp. and Sakku Investments Corp.
In addition, the organization announced a list of new ambassadors, including regional Inuit organizations, the Nunavut Economic Developers Association, the Baffin Regional Chamber of Commerce, Aarluk Consulting and Nunavut Sivuniksavut, who will act as spokespersons for the prize.
“The endorsement of these remarkable organizations from Nunavut reflects the importance of the Arctic Inspiration Prize and its continuously expanding network,” said Arnold Witzig, one of AIP’s co-founders, in a Sept. 25 release.
“I am thrilled with the enthusiasm and support that the Arctic Inspiration Prize has received in the North. Northerners, including those from Nunavut who have taken a leading role on the Arctic Inspiration Prize team, have clearly embraced the Prize and will help ensure its long-term success.”
Since it was founded in 2012, the Arctic Inspiration Prize has handed out $2 million to a number of projects across the Canadian Arctic.
In its first year, the Nunavut Literacy Council took home $300,000, while Arviat elders writing a book on Inuit Qaujimajatuqangit received $240,000.
Last year, Inuit Tapiriit Kanatami’s Amaujaq National Centre for Inuit Education received $325,000 towards a project to engage parents in their children’s education.
The cash is awarded by the S. and A. Inspiration Foundation, a fund started by Sima Sharifi and Arnold Witzig of Vancouver, through Université Laval’s ArcticNet program.
Nominations for the 2014 Arctic Inspiration Prize will be accepted until October 1 on the award’s website.
The 2014 Arctic Inspiration Prize awards ceremony will take place in Ottawa on December 10, in conjunction with the international Arctic Change 2014 conference at the Ottawa Convention Centre.