In 2007, our government created a stand-alone ministry with high hopes to improve Ontario's relationship with Indigenous Peoples. We have come a long way in 10 years. The ministry has a new name, a stronger mandate and a firm resolve to right wrongs and forge relationships built on trust and respect. I am grateful for all those who have worked in the ministry under the strong and determined leadership of Minister David Zimmer, Deputy Minister Deborah Richardson, and their predecessors. I especially want to thank all leaders of Indigenous Peoples who have guided the ministry over the years, ensuring its work is the result of a genuine partnership.

Dalton McGuinty, Ontario's 24th Premier

I am extremely proud and honoured to have been the first minister to lead this ministry, at the time the Ministry of Aboriginal Affairs. It was during my time as Minister of Natural Resources that I became very interested in the issues facing First Nations communities across Ontario. As I became more involved in the issues, I approached then-Premier Dalton McGuinty and asked to head up, at the time, the Ontario Native Affairs Secretariat. Upon the release of the Ipperwash Inquiry Report, Premier McGuinty established the Ministry of Aboriginal Affairs and named me minister. Now the Ministry of Indigenous Relations and Reconciliation, this ministry is furthering the important initiatives and work started more than a decade ago.

David Ramsay, former Minister of Aboriginal Affairs (2007)

Becoming its own ministry in 2007 was an important symbolic gesture arising out of the Ipperwash Commission. A decade later, MAA/MIRR has proven the operational necessity of having a stand-alone portfolio. It’s a tribute to the great professionals working within it, and Indigenous communities’ willingness to partner. It remains a highlight of my 10 years at Queen’s Park, and I wish MIRR many fruitful decades to come.

Michael Bryant, former Minister of Aboriginal Affairs (2007-2008)

It is incredibly humbling to see how far we have come in repairing a shared history steeped in injustice and inequity to bring meaningful change to Indigenous peoples in Ontario. I commend the ongoing dedication and passion of the whole team, current and past, at the Ministry of Indigenous Relations and Reconciliation in the invaluable work that you do. As we enter a new decade of partnership with Indigenous peoples and communities, I know we will continue to work together to build on this legacy and continue the journey of reconciliation.

Brad Duguid, former Minister of Aboriginal Affairs (2008-2010)

Congratulations to all who have worked at the ministry over the past 10 years. The road to reconciliation will be long and challenging. Your willingness to listen, openness to new approaches, energy and determination have helped us take important steps along that road. Thank you for your efforts.

Christopher Bentley, former Minister of Aboriginal Affairs (2010-2011)

My time as deputy of this great ministry was a privilege and a highlight of my career in government. Throughout that career, I’ve been profoundly affected by my opportunities to work with Indigenous leaders, seeing firsthand the passion they have for their communities. And while I was deputy, we launched a multi-pronged approach to raise awareness about treaties, starting with the first widely available map of treaties in Ontario. Through that effort, we addressed curriculum and had an interactive social media campaign. Thank you to all the staff at MIRR and your colleagues across government for the passion you bring to this important work every day.

David de Launay, former Deputy Minister

What struck me from the onset was just how passionate the employees at the ministry were about their work and dedicated to improving the conditions of Indigenous peoples. Miigwetch to all staff and the Indigenous communities in Ontario.

Lori Sterling, former Deputy Minister