Russ and Donna Mirasty smile for a portrait.
Lieutenant Governor of Saskatchewan, the Honourable Russ Mirasty and Her Honour Donna Mirasty.

Russ and Donna Mirasty share stories at Fireside with Lyndon

On December 14, 2023, Fireside with Lyndon featured special guests the Honourable Russ Mirasty, Lieutenant Governor of Saskatchewan, and Her Honour Donna Mirasty. Both born and raised in northern Saskatchewan, Russ Mirasty was appointed Lieutenant Governor of Saskatchewan in 2019 and is the first Indigenous person to hold this position. Donna Mirasty is a Licensed Practical Nurse and skilled seamstress. We were honoured to have them on stage in the SaskTel Theatre to share interesting stories about their lives and careers.

Their conversation has been uploaded online for your at-home enjoyment. Check out the video below!

Fireside with Lyndon is presented by SaskEnergy.

Just before the Fireside chat, we were excited to discover a photo of Donna in our collection! This work by Frances Robson was captured in 1983 as part of a set of 10 portraits of nurses at Loon Lake Union Hospital. It’s fascinating to see how Remai Modern’s collection preserves history through the varied perspectives of individuals and artists in Saskatchewan and beyond.

A black and white photo of Donna Mirasy, in her nursing uniform and standing beside a hospital bed.
Frances Robson, Nurses from Loon Lake Union Hospital, Loon Lake, Saskatchewan: Donna Mirasty, C.N.A., 7 years, 1983. Gelatin silver print. The Mendel Art Gallery Collection at Remai Modern. Purchased 1989.

Russ Mirasty was born and raised in La Ronge and is a member of the Lac La Ronge Indian Band. His first language is Woodland Cree. His grandparents led a traditional life, fishing, hunting and trapping. Through his family, he learned to value a connection to the land, and the importance of hospitality and community service.  

Mr. Mirasty joined the Royal Canadian Mounted Police (RCMP) in 1976 and was one of only two Indigenous cadets in his troop. Over his 36-year career, he served in various roles across the country, including as Director General of National Aboriginal Policing Services and as Commanding Officer of “F” Division (Saskatchewan). He retired from the RCMP as Assistant Commissioner in 2013. 

Following his retirement, Mr. Mirasty continued his service to the public through the Student First Engagement project, as a member of the League of Educational Administrators, Directors and Superintendents, and as a board member on the Community Safety Knowledge Alliance. 

He was appointed to Saskatchewan’s Advisory Group on Poverty Reduction, and served on the board of the McDowell Foundation, which supports research, inquiry, and sharing of information for the K to 12 education system. 

Donna Mirasty was born and raised in the historic northern Saskatchewan community of Cumberland House. Her first language is Swampy Cree. One of eight children, Mrs. Mirasty’s father was a trapper and fisherman, and her mother was a homemaker. Her father served in the South Saskatchewan Regiment during the Second World War.  

Mrs. Mirasty studied nursing in Saskatoon and Nipawin and is a Licensed Practical Nurse. She is an avid cross-country skier and has volunteered for numerous ski clubs. She is also a skilled seamstress and experienced quilter. 

Her Honour has lived throughout Canada and has travelled extensively in her home province of Saskatchewan. 

The couple have a home in La Ronge, and they have two children and two grandchildren. 

Fireside is a free series that offers opportunities for community gathering and discussion, hosted by Lyndon J Linklater at Remai Modern. Visit our website to see more events and learn about future Fireside gatherings!