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Peter Ittinuar

Photograph: Peter Ittinuar, Pierre Trudeau and their families, Rankin Inlet, 1983


Nunatsiaq MP Peter Ittinuar, members of Ittinuar's family, Pierre Trudeau and his three sons at the Rankin Inlet airport, 1983.

(1950 - )

Peter Ittinuar was born in Chesterfield Inlet, Northwest Territories (N.W.T.) in 1950. Before beginning his political career, he was a professor of Inuktitut, and of Inuit culture, at the University of Ottawa. He was also a Canadian Broadcasting Corporation (CBC) announcer, editor of Inuit Today, and film-maker.

In 1979, he ran in the federal election, winning the seat for the newly created riding of Nunatsiaq as a member of the New Democratic Party (NDP). He was the first Inuk member of Parliament. In 1982, following the Liberal government's announcement of plans for establishing self-government in the N.W.T., Ittinuar "crossed the floor" to become a member of the Liberal Party.

In addition to his political career, Ittinuar has served as executive director/special assistant for the Inuit Tapirisat of Canada. Currently, he holds the position of Assistant Deputy Minister, Department of Sustainable Development, in the Nunavut government.


"Ittinuar, Peter". -- Canadian parliamentary guide / guide parlementaire canadien, 1982-1983. -- Ed. Pierre G. Normandin. -- Ottawa : Pierre G. Normandin, 1983. -- P. 321.

Townsend, Ted. -- "Ittinuar crosses floor". -- Nunatsiaq news [online]. -- April 1, Souvenir Edition. -- [Cited December 4, 2000). -- Access: