It is with great sadness that we inform you of the passing of Edward J. Aronhie:nens Cross, an educational leader and pivotal member of the Office of First Nations and Inuit Education (OFNIE).
Edward J. Aronhie:nens Cross (1943-2021)
Eddie Aronhi:nens Cross’s tremendous contributions to McGill University and to Indigenous education span decades. Eddie Cross’s career in education began in 1966 and has since changed the educational landscape for Indigenous learners locally and across Canada.
Eddie's vision, leadership, and partnership with OFNIE in advancing Indigenous teacher education will be most remembered here, at McGill's Faculty of Education. As Director of Instructional Services and, subsequently, Director of Education, Eddie was instrumental in developing OFNIE’s teacher education and language and literacies programs. Under Eddie’s leadership, OFNIE offered its first “Aboriginal Literacy Certificate” in Kahnawà:ke and its flagship program, the Certificate in Education for First Nations and Inuit. It is thanks to Eddie’s trailblazing work, several cohorts of Kanien’kehá:ka teachers completed their teaching degrees through McGill Education and now fill the classrooms and staff rooms of Kahnawà:ke elementary schools. His incredible work has forever changed OFNIE for the better. He will be dearly missed.
To read a more detailed tribute to Edward J. Aronhie:nens Cross, please see the article by OFNIE's Jim Howden and Stephen Peters in The McGill Reporter.