Thomas Suluk

Last updated
Thomas Suluk
Member of Parliament for Nunatsiaq
In office
Preceded by Peter Ittinuar
Succeeded by Jack Anawak
Personal details
Born (1950-03-14) March 14, 1950 (age 71)
Arviat, Northwest Territories, Canada
Political party Progressive Conservative

Thomas Suluk (Inuktitut: ᑖᒪᔅ ᓱᓗᒃ, born March 14, 1950) is a Canadian former politician. He represented the electoral district of Nunatsiaq in the House of Commons of Canada from 1984 to 1988 as a member of the Progressive Conservatives.



Thomas Suluk was born on March 14, 1950 in Arviat, [1] then part of the Northwest Territories. [2] [3] After graduating from Arthur Turner Anglican Theological School in Pangnirtung, on Baffin Island, Suluk was posted to Apex, Iqaluit. However, at age 22, he was one year too young to go through the process of ordination. Instead of waiting, Suluk chose to enter politics, during a time when Inuit were beginning to learn of land claims and their civil rights. He began in his local council office, but moved on to working for Inuit Tapiriit Kanatami, as he had an interest in broader community issues. [3]

After working as a Canadian Broadcasting Corporation radio announcer for a short period, Suluk won an election to the House of Commons of Canada at the 1984 federal election, representing the electoral district of Nunatsiaq (now Nunavut). His election was close - his Progressive Conservative candidacy narrowly defeated the Liberal candidate, Robert Kuptana, by just 247 votes. [4] During his time in Parliament, Suluk focused on land claims issues in Nunavut, and was also involved with the Tungavik Federation of Nunavut (now Nunavut Tunngavik Incorporated), which was at the time the peak organisation tasked with negotiating land claims and treaties for Inuit. [3] Suluk did not contest the seat at the following election. [4]

After his brief role in politics, Suluk opened a coffeeshop in Arviat, and as of 2008 was working on the 2007/8 Inuit Health Survey. [3] [ dead link ]

Electoral record

1984 Canadian federal election : Nunatsiaq
Progressive Conservative Thomas Suluk 2,23732.49+24.71
Liberal Robert Kuptana1,99028.90−12.90
New Democratic Rhoda Innuksuk1,97328.65−18.61
Independent Peter Ittinuar 6869.96
Total valid votes6,886100.00  
Progressive Conservative gain from New Democratic Swing +18.80
Independent candidate Peter Ittinuar lost 37.31 percentage points from the 1980 election, when he ran as a New Democrat.

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  1. Parliament of Canada
  2. Normandin, Pierre; Normandin, A. Léopold (1988). Guide parlementaire canadien (in French). Pennsylvania State University. Archived from the original on June 3, 2012. Retrieved December 19, 2011.
  3. 1 2 3 4 Mackenzie, Karen (June 23, 2008). "Thomas Suluk is on a winding road". Iqaluit: Northern News Services Online. Archived from the original on March 3, 2016. Retrieved December 19, 2011.
  4. 1 2 "Nunatsiaq - History". Our Campaigns. October 16, 2008. Retrieved December 19, 2011.