|Member of the Canadian Parliament|
January 23, 2006 – September 7, 2008
|Preceded by||Bev Desjarlais|
|Succeeded by||Niki Ashton|
|Born||March 20, 1962|
First known for her role as RCMP officer Michelle Kenidi in the CBC Television series North of 60, she was elected to the House of Commons of Canada in the 2006 Canadian federal election, and served as a Liberal Party of Canada Member of Parliament representing the electoral district of Churchill. Following her defeat in the 2008 Canadian federal election she returned to film and television, and continues to work as both an actress and a film producer.
A member of the Norway House Cree Nation in northern Manitoba, she was born in Winnipeg. She is the granddaughter of Olympic long distance runner Joe Keeper and the daughter of Joseph I. Keeper, a member of the Order of Canada, and Phyllis Keeper (née Beardy), an Anglican priest.
Keeper studied history and theatre at the University of Winnipeg. Originally planning to become a history professor, she instead became an actor after getting involved in an indigenous theatre company in Winnipeg.
Keeper had a number of supporting roles in film, most notably in the National Film Board of Canada docudrama short For Angela, before being cast in North of 60 in 1992. She was a five-time Gemini Award nominee for Best Actress in a Continuing Leading Dramatic Role for her work on the series, winning the award at the 11th Gemini Awards in 1997. At the 9th Gemini Awards in 1995, she also received a Gemini nomination for Performance in a Children's or Youth Program or Series, for her performance in For Angela.
Following the end of North of 60 as a regular series, Keeper continued her role as Michelle Kenidi in several North of 60 television films, and appeared in the films Heater, Skins and On the Corner, until she decided to seek the Liberal nomination in Churchill in 2005.
After her election defeat in 2008, she took on both acting and production roles in the APTN drama series Cashing In. More recently she has acted in the television series Mohawk Girls and Heartland, and the films Through Black Spruce and Falls Around Her.
A partner in the film production firm Kistikan Pictures, she was a producer of Through Black Spruce, as well as the films Road of Iniquity, Sky Stories and REDress Redress Project. In 2014 she participated in the creation of Going Home Star, a Royal Winnipeg Ballet production on the theme of indigenous reconciliation.
Keeper was elected as a Member of Parliament in the 2006 Canadian federal election, representing the Liberal Party in Churchill. She served as the Official Opposition's Critic for Public Health and Canadian Heritage, and as a Special Advisor for Aboriginal Outreach in the 39th Parliament of Canada.
She continues to work as a political activist. She currently serves as chair of the board of trustees for the Helen Betty Osborne Memorial Foundation, as a member of the advisory committees of the Urban Shaman Gallery, Red Cross Manitoba and Canadians for a New Partnership, and an honorary witness for the Truth and Reconciliation Commission.
|2006 Canadian federal election|
|New Democratic||Niki Ashton||7,103||28.41||-15.0||$70,290|
|Total valid votes||24,966||100.00||–|
|Total rejected ballots||90||0.36||–|
|Liberal gain from New Democrat||Swing||+8.7|
|2008 Canadian federal election|
|New Democratic||Niki Ashton||8,734||47.76||+19.35||$79,086|
|Total valid votes/Expense limit||18,402||100.00||$91,452|
|Total rejected ballots||102||0.55||+0.19|
|New Democrat gain from Liberal||Swing||+|
In addition to her Gemini Award nominations and win, she is the recipient of a National Aboriginal Achievement Award, three American Indian Film Festival awards for acting and producing, and a 2014 Canadian Civil Liberties Association award for Public Engagement. She was named ACTRA's Woman of the Year in 2017. In June 2017, Keeper received both an honorary doctor of letters from Wilfrid Laurier University, and a Governor General's Meritorious Service Medal for the ballet Going Home Star.
- "Tina Keeper". The Canadian Encyclopedia, May 14, 2008.
- "TV's maverick Mountie". The Globe and Mail, May 6, 2002.
- "Activist receives honorary degree". Brantford Expositor, June 7, 2017.
- "North of 60: New TV series big break for Alberta talent". Edmonton Journal, October 10, 1992.
- "This Hour, Due South take top Geminis: David Cubitt, Tina Keeper land honors as best leading actors". Montreal Gazette, March 3, 1997.
- "Major Gemini Nominations". Toronto Star, January 18, 1995.
- "Keeper closing out her career at acting level; Cree star wants to make films". Edmonton Journal, March 28, 1999.
- "Liberals recruit North of 60 star". Sudbury Star, October 25, 2005.
- "APTN casino drama holding a solid hand". Winnipeg Free Press, March 2, 2010.
- "It's a great year for Indigenous films at TIFF". Toronto Star, September 6, 2018.
- "Ballet meant to educate Canadians about Indian residential schools: commissioner". Canadian Press, October 1, 2014.
- "Actress Tina Keeper wins Churchill for Liberals". CBC News. January 24, 2006. Retrieved 2015-12-10.
- "12 ridings that surprised". National Post, October 16, 2008.
- "Five artists win aboriginal achievement awards". The Globe and Mail, January 14, 2004.
- "Two Globe writers honoured by civil liberties association". The Globe and Mail, November 6, 2014.
- "List of honourees recognized for indigenous work by Gov. Gen. David Johnston". Canadian Press, June 19, 2017.