Core Faculty


Gordie Liske is Weledeh Yellowknives Dene from the Yellowknives Dene First Nation.  He is a band councilor in Dettah and works closely with local Elders on the land. Gordie lives in Somba’ke and is an instructor at Dechinta.






Lois Edge is an instructor of Indigenous Studies with the Bachelor of Education program at Aurora College Thebacha Campus at Fort Smith, Northwest Territories. Her educational background includes a Ph.D. in Educational Policy Studies with a specialization in Indigenous Peoples Education, and Master and Bachelor of Arts degrees in Anthropology from the University of Alberta. Indigenous to the north, of French Cree Metis and Chipewyan maternal ancestry and Tet’lit Gwichin, Scottish and English paternal ancestry, her interests include Indigenous philosophy, pedagogy, research, health and well-being, Indigenous women, traditional art forms and ancestral knowledges and celebrating Indigeneity.



 Glen Coulthard is Yellowknives Dene and an associate professor in First Nations and Indigenous Studies and the Department of Political Science at the University of British Columbia. He is the author of Red Skin, White Masks: Rejecting the Colonial Politics of Recognition (Minneapolis: University of Minnesota Press, 2014), winner of the 2016 Caribbean Philosophical Association’s Frantz Fanon Award for Outstanding Book, the Canadian Political Science Association’s CB Macpherson Award for Best Book in Political Theory, published in English or French, in 2014/2015, and the Rik Davidson Studies in Political Economy Award for Best Book in 2016.




Leanne Betasamosake Simpson is a Michi Saagiig Nishnaabeg scholar, writer, and artist with a Ph.D. from the University of Manitoba. She is on the faculty at the Dechinta Centre for Research and Learning and a distinguished visiting professor at Ryerson University in Toronto. She is the author of Dancing on Our Turtle’s Back, The Gift Is in the Making, Islands of Decolonial Love, and This Accident of Being Lost, and editor of Lighting the Eighth Fire, This Is an Honour Song (with Kiera Ladner), and The Winter We Danced (Kino-nda-niimi Collective). Leanne is a member of Alderville First Nation, in Ontario, Canada, and has been engaged in Indigenous land based education for twenty years.


Partime Faulty

Melaw Nakehk’o was born and raised in Denendeh as the daughter of Chief Jim Antoine of Łíídlįį Kų́ę́ (Fort Simpson) and Celine Antoine. She was taught traditional art by her granny, Judith Buggins, at a young age. Melaw attended the Institute of American Indian Arts in Santa Fe, New Mexico, where she acquired an Associates Degree in Two Dimensional Arts, with a focus on painting. She remained in the Southwest for 8 years. Melaw returned to the Deh Cho in 2008, to raise her two boys where they can truly understand the interconnectedness and reciprocal relationship Dene share with the land. Melaw is a two time Dechinta alumni and Board Member and an active member of Łíídlįį Kų́ę́ First Nation, attending annual regional and territorial leadership meetings and treaty conferences. She has been nurturing the arts of sewing, moose hide tanning, and traditional medicine, as well as researching her people’s history to teach the coming generations to maintain the pride and strength found in their indigenous culture.



Siku Allooloo is an Inuit/Haitian/Taino writer, community builder and Dene family member from Somba K’e, Denendeh. She is an alumus of the Dechinta pilot program and has worked with Dechinta in several capacities throughout the years, including as a land-based facilitator and co-instructor since 2017. Siku holds a BA in Anthropology and Indigenous Studies from the University of Victoria and is part of a lineage of activists and leaders who have raised her to be close to the land. Siku is the winner of Briarpatch Magazine’s 2016 Writing in the Margin’s contest for creative non-fiction, and her other work has been published in The Malahat Review, The Guardian, Truthout, The Northern Journal, NationsRising, Rabble, and The Winter We Danced: Voices from the Past, The Future, and the Idle No More Movement.



Part time Elder instructors include Ethel Lamothe, Paul McKenzie, Jim Antione, Celine Antione, Sam Gargan, Jane Dragon, Berna Martin and Yellowknives Dene First Nations Elders. [/one_half_last]