Darian Baskatawang

Articling Student

Darian Baskatawang is an articling student at OKT.

Darian is a two-spirit Anishinaabe man from Whitesand First Nation. He is the community's first home-grown JD candidate and youngest to perform advisory roles for Chief and Council at the age of 16. Darian spent the last year on the reserve teaching remote high-school students, volunteering for the COVID-19 community relief, and doing classwork for his JD.

Darian has dedicated his professional life to building stronger Nations from coast to coast. He is guided by values and principles his great-grandmother taught him, which knit Indigenous nations together: kindness, humbleness, respect, collaboration and laughter.

Darian has served as an advisor to various federal and provincial cabinet ministers, and leaders of both orders of government. He has worked in the Prime Minister's Office, advised Premier Wynne, and served as Primary Advocate for Youth for the Chiefs of Ontario. At the Chiefs of Ontario, Darian sat on the Political Confederacy and maintained roles in Education, Child Welfare, and Justice. In these roles, Darian worked extensively on the revamped Children, Youth and Family Services Act, the Anishinaabe Nation Education Agreement/Master Education Agreemeent for sectoral self-governance, amongst others.

Darian enjoys sailing, cycling, hiking, watching RuPaul's Drag Race, and playing Halo or Star Wars.

Representative Work

Negotiation

  • Assisted in the negotiation and implementation of the Ontario – Anishinabek Nation Education Agreement, the largest sectoral self-governance agreement in Canada
  • Assisted in negotiations with the Crown and energy provider in a settlement agreement

Strategic Planning

  • Assisted various Ministers in drafting laws, policies, and regulations that affected Indigenous people, such as the overhaul of the Ontario child welfare system, revamp of student assistance programs, and more
  • Assisted with consultations to draft laws and codes for First Nations communities, including constitutional and membership code work
  • Assisted Indigenous youth create, plan, and implement their own strategies and paths of engagement

Selected Speaking Engagements

  • Speaker, ‘State of Indigenous Health and Human Rights in Canada’, Queen’s Health and Human Rights Conference, Kingston, Canada, November 2018.
  • Speaker, ‘LGBTI Youth, Inclusive Education and Health’, Leaving No One Behind: UN Equal Rights Coalition Global Conference on LGBTI Human Rights and Inclusive Development, Vancouver, Canada, August 2018.
  • Speaker, ‘Leaving No One Behind – Canada’s Role in Advancing LGBTQ2 Human Rights Globally. Leaving No One Behind: UN Equal Rights Coalition Global Conference on LGBTI Human Rights and Inclusive Development, Vancouver, Canada, August 2018.
  • Speaker, ‘Racism in the Laws of Love for Indians’, Government of Ontario Conference on Anti-Racism, Toronto, Canada, December 2017.