Max Gros-Louis

Magella Gros-Louis known as Max Gros-Louis or Oné Onti OC OQ (born August 6, 1931) is a Canadian politician and businessman in Quebec. For many years he was Grand Chief of the Huron-Wendat First Nation. He founded and directed various important organizations, which are dedicated to the culture and rights of the First Nation People in Canada.

Early life

Gros-Louis is the son of Cecile Talbot and Gerard Gros-Louis. He attended school in Loretteville, but left at age 16.[1]


As a young man, Gros-Louis worked as a surveyor and as a travelling salesman. He later opened a small shop "Le Huron" where he sold snowshoes, moccasins and other First Nation crafts and also managed a dance company.[2]

In 1964 he was elected Grand Chief of the Huron-Wendat Nation in Wendake. Between 1965 and 1976 he was successively a founding member, vice president and secretary-treasurer of the Association des Indiens du Québec.[3][4]

In 1983 Gros-Louis represented First nation Quebecers at federal constitutional conferences on aboriginal law. As Chief, he instituted a program to found businesses and create employment in his community.[5] In 1984 he retired from political life, but by 1987 he was back, once more attending constitutional conferences. In 1994 he was re-elected Grand Chief, and remained until 1996.

Gros-Louis was Director and Vice Chief of the Assembly of First Nations for ten years.[6] He was for five years Secretary of the Indian Advisory Council, and he worked as an administrator of the Aboriginal Economic Development Program and a member of the Multiculturalism Council. Gros-Louis has advocated a more individualist approach to economic and social problems than most First Nations leaders.

Max Gros-Louis was once more elected Grand Chief of the Huron-Wendat Nation in 2004, and remained in that position until 2008, when he was defeated by Konrad Sioui.[7]

In 2010 Gros-Louis was involved in a controversy when he accepted a donation for a museum which did not yet exist.[8]

In 2012, a book about the life of Gros-Louis, written by Alain Bouchard, Max Gros-Louis Le corbeau de Wendake, was published.[9] He was awarded as an officer of the National Order of Quebec and in December 2015, he was awarded the Order of Canada with the grade of officer.[10]

Max Gros-Louie has written an autobiography titled First Among the Huron.[11]


Max Gros-Louis was married to Claire "Tikanakouen" Belair; the couple had five children.


  1. Rencontre. Volume 15-16. Secrétariat des activités gouvernementales en milieu amérindien et inuit. 1993. pp. 172–173.
  2. Jane Campbell (1 January 2006). The Retrospective Review (1820-1828) and the Revival of Seventeenth Century Poetry. Wilfrid Laurier Univ. Press. pp. 61–. ISBN 978-0-88920-866-7.
  3. "Un duel entre Sioui et Gros-Louis à Wendake". Le Journal de Québec, Jean-François Racine, 18 September 2016
  4. Caroline Desbiens (15 May 2013). Power from the North: Territory, Identity, and the Culture of Hydroelectricity in Quebec. UBC Press. pp. 232–. ISBN 978-0-7748-2418-7.
  5. Canadian Anthropology Society (1992). The Rise of Native Self-Determination and the Crisis of the Canadian Political Regime. Culture. Canadian Anthropology Society. pp. 70–.
  7. "Sioui défait Gros-Louis". Radio Canada, 1 November 2008
  8. "Max Gros-Louis sème la controverse". Jean-Luc Lavallée, Actualities,, 16 March 2010
  9. "À la découverte du vrai Max Gros-Louis". L'Actuel, Isabelle Chabot, 24 September 2012
  10. "Order of Canada Appointments". The Governor General of Canada His Excellency the Right Honourable David Johnston. Governor General of Canada. Retrieved 31 December 2015.
  11. "Max Gros-Louis". The Canadian Encyclopedia.
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