Dominique (T8aminik) Rankin
Anishinaabe Nation Elder
Grandfather T8aminik (the Algonquin spelling of Dominique) was born in James Bay Territory (northwest of Quebec), to a family that had succeeded in preserving their ancestors nomadic way of life. At the age of seven, T8aminik was designated to take over from his father as hereditary chief. Traditionally, the role of a leader must necessarily be accompanied by that of a medicine man. Because of this, since childhood, he followed a long path of teachings and initiations from elders from his own community, and from various guides recognized throughout Canada, including William Commanda, to whom he was his right hand man for years.
In 2006, Grandfather T8aminik became a fully recognized elder by his peers. His true birth name is Kapiteotak (translation — “Whose crying is heard from afar”), and he now dedicates himself to the role for which he has been chosen: teacher and spiritual leader.
Knight of the ”Ordre National du Québec” (the highest distinction bestowed by the Premier of Quebec), recipient of the Quebec National Assembly and the Queen Elizabeth Diamond Jubilee medals, T8aminik is recognized for his commitment to raise awareness of native culture and philosophy, both in Canada and around the world.
After being grand chief of the Algonquin Nation, he co-founded the Kina8at organization with Marie-Josée Tardif. He is also currently the Honorary President of Religions for Peace and of the Circle of Peace of Montreal, two organizations linked to the United Nations.