Jamie Snook

Study program:
Indigenous Health
Current affiliation:
University of Guelph

Jamie Snook (Indigenous health, University of Guelph) is researching relationships between public health and Indigenous co-management of fish and wildlife resources in Labrador’s Inuit communities.

Doctoral research

Indigenous co-management and public health: A case study from Nunatsiavut, Labrador

For millennia, Indigenous peoples in Canada have maintained strong and interconnected relationships with animals, plants, and ecosystems, relying on the natural environment for food, clothing, culture, wellbeing, and governance. Understanding the importance of maintaining strong connections to the land and resources while supporting a healthy and sustainable ecosystem, Indigenous peoples in Canada are now engaged in co-managing the environment and natural resources in their territories and on their traditional homelands. For example, the implementation of the Labrador Inuit Land Claim Agreement in 2005 established two co-management boards: the Torngat Joint Fisheries Board and the Torngat Wildlife and Plants Co-Management Board. Jamie’s research seeks to understand the ways in which co-management structures and processes are linked to health, and examines the pathways through which different co-management governance structures and approaches might impact the health of individuals, communities, populations, and ecosystems. 

Jamie Snook is a leader, politician, researcher, and community advocate who works at the intersection of environment, management, governance, health, and Indigenous culture. He is a Labradorimmiut (Inuit from Labrador), a member of the NunatuKavut Community Council, and a proud Labradorian.

Jamie is currently the executive director of the Torngat Wildlife, Plants, and Fisheries Secretariat, a tripartite-funded co-management organization resulting from the Labrador Inuit Land Claims Agreement. In this role, Jamie has first-hand experience of Indigenous co-management in Canada, and is immersed in inter-governmental and interdisciplinary dialogues integrating Indigenous and Western sciences for decision-making. Jamie has represented the Torngat Secretariat at many national and international fora, including the North Atlantic Salmon Conservation Organization, the North Atlantic Fisheries Organization, and the Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species of Wildlife, Fauna, and Flora.

In 2013, stemming from his strong desire to serve his community, Jamie became mayor of Happy Valley-Goose Bay, winning 69% of the vote during an unprecedented 60% voter turnout. Since his election, Jamie has emerged as a strong and progressive voice who promotes community wellness; multi-national, Indigenous, and Labrador cultures; engagement with nature; municipal representation; and reconciliation.

Uniting his love of service and his focus on community health, Jamie founded and became the first president of the Trappers’ Running Club, a community-led initiative that has continued to have strong health impacts in the region. Jamie continues to advocate for getting outside for community wellbeing. His leadership and communication abilities have been recognized through multiple awards, including selection for the Governor General’s Canadian Leadership Conference (2008), the Volunteer of the Year Award (2008), the Executive of the Year Award (2010), and the Queen’s Diamond Jubilee Medal (2013) in recognition of community advocacy and leadership. Jamie holds a business administration degree, a professional designation from the Canadian Institute of Management, and a master’s in ethno-political conflict analysis and management. In 2016, Jamie started his PhD in public health at the University of Guelph's Department of Population Medicine, motivated by his strong commitment to evidence-based decision-making and supporting knowledge for action and positive change.