For a man who has accomplished so much, Willie Littlechild gives himself credit for very little.
He was the first Treaty Indian to earn a law degree in Alberta and he has received the Order of Canada. He has been honoured with multiple awards for his involvement in sports. He is the former MP for Wetaskiwin and the former Alberta regional chief of the Assembly of First Nations.
“I’ve never really been the best athlete or the best student, but the combination of both sports and school gave me opportunities, for example, to eventually go to university and get an education,” Littlechild said. “I always think back in my own career and try to pinpoint what made me successful in different arenas and I owe it all to sport.”
Littlechild was one of the speakers on Saturday during the opening of Lasting Traditions, an exhibit on First Nations sport at the Alberta Sports Hall of Fame and Museum in Red Deer.
The interactive exhibit shows how native games strengthened the minds and bodies of men and women of all ages.
Around 60 people gathered for the kickoff to the exhibit, which also featured Cree Elder Don Johnson, minister of aboriginal relations Gene Zwozdesky and Conrad (Piita-Piikoan) Little Leaf, from Head-Smashed-In Buffalo Jump as honoured guests and speakers.