Manuel, George

George Manuel, Shuswap, political organizer, author (b at Neskonlith IR, BC 17 Feb 1921; d at Kamloops, BC 15 Nov 1989). A widely respected, self-educated man and clever political strategist, Manuel was second president (1970-76) of the National Indian Brotherhood (now Assembly of First Nations) during intense local-level Indigenous protest and numerous important court decisions affecting Indigenous peoples. He helped establish the NIB and its member organizations as a force to be reckoned with in Indigenous affairs. A worldwide traveller in support of indigenous peoples, he emulated the principles of frugality, community development and leadership-by-example as espoused by Tanzanian president Julius Nyerere. Manuel thrust Canadian Indigenous affairs onto the world stage at the UN and elsewhere and in 1975 became founding president of the World Council of Indigenous Peoples, from which post he promoted the concept of indigenous peoples as the "Fourth World." He became Officer of the Order of Canada in 1986.

(see also: First Nations)