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Chief Commissioner Marion Buller addresses the crowd at the opening ceremony of the MMIWG inquiry community hearings in Richmond, B.C., in April following a blanketing ceremony led by Chris Lewis (left) from the Squamish Nation. (Chantelle Bellrichard/CBC) The national inquiry into missing and murdered Indigenous women and girls will have two new people on its team starting Monday in the roles of executive director and director of research.

Jennifer Moore Rattray, a member of the Peepeekisis First Nation in Saskatchewan, has been named the inquiry’s new executive director.

She previously worked for the Manitoba provincial government as the assistant deputy minister for the Department of Families. She is also currently serving a five-year term on the CBC/Radio-Canada Board of Directors .

The inquiry’s top job has been vacant since January when Debbie Reid left after roughly four months in the role. Calvin Wong, the inquiry’s director of operations, has been serving as interim lead since Reid’s departure.

Rattray will become the team’s third official executive director since the inquiry started its two-year mandate in September 2016.

Dr. Karine Duhamel has been named Director of Research for the inquiry, following Aimeé Craft’s departure in October of last year. Duhamel, who has a PhD in history from the University of Manitoba, previously worked at the Canadian Museum for Human Rights as curator for Indigenous Rights and is Anishinaabe Métis. ‘Vital task’

"The national inquiry will greatly benefit from the wealth of knowledge, skills and experience that Jennifer and Karine bring to their important roles," said Chief Commissioner Marion Buller in a news release announcing the new appointees.

"These strong leaders join a passionate, talented and hard-working team of individuals who are united by a deep commitment to the vital task at hand."

The inquiry requested a two-year extension on its mandate from the federal government last month, but no decision has been announced. The inquiry’s current deadline for a final report is November 2018.

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