DUniv. 2021

Honorary Doctorate Recipient

Doris Peltier


Doris Peltier is Anishinaabe from Wikwemikoong, a First Nations community located on the unceded territory of the Odawa, Ojibway and Pottawatami peoples, on Ontario’s Manitoulin Island. She is currently community engagement coordinator with the Feast Centre for Indigenous STBBI Research, a partnership between McMaster University and the Canadian Aboriginal AIDS Network.

Doris is currently completing Visioning Health II, a national study by and for HIV-positive Indigenous women in Canada. Doris also serves as a Community Advisory Council member with the Waakebiness-Bryce Institute for Indigenous Health at the Dalla Lana School of Public Health (University of Toronto), as well as on the Women Living with HIV Advisory Group with World Health Organization (WHO).

Doris is an avid storyteller, a skill she acquired from the elders in her community. For upwards of 25 years, she has honed her storytelling skills as one of Canada’s preeminent Indigenous performing artists. She sees storytelling as tool used by Indigenous people to transmit knowledge. Indeed, this transferable skill drew her to Indigenous health research and reinforced the idea that research is all about storytelling. 

Doris has been involved for almost two decades in the Indigenous HIV movement in Canada, and more than a decade in Indigenous community-based health research. She is fluent in her Indigenous language, which frames her worldview and her approach to Indigenous research. She is a mother, grandmother and great grandmother, and lives with HIV. She embraces her role of matriarch to her little family as her most important one in life.

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