The Honourable James K. Bartleman concluded his term as the 27th Lieutenant Governor of Ontario on 5 September 2007. During his time in office, Mr. Bartleman pursued three priorities: eliminating the stigma of mental illness, supporting anti-racism initiatives, and encouraging Aboriginal young people. As Lieutenant Governor, Mr. Bartleman implemented four aboriginal literacy programs including The Club Amick Reading Program for 5,000 native children and 36 summer reading camps for 2,500 children in Ontario's north.
Preceding his appointment as Ontario's Vice-Regal Representative, Mr. Bartleman served 35 years in Canada's Foreign Service as ambassador to Cuba, Israel, NATO, and the European Union, and as high commissioner to South Africa and Australia. He was the foreign and defence policy advisor to the prime minister. Mr. Bartleman holds thirteen honorary degrees and is the recipient of a number of honours and awards, including the National Aboriginal Achievement Award 1999, the Phi Delta Kappa Educator of the Year Award 2004, and the Arthur Kroeger College Award in Ethics in Public Affairs 2007. Mr. Bartleman is an officer of the Order of Canada and a member of the Order of Ontario.
Mr. Bartleman is the author of four books of non-fiction. His novel As Long as the Rivers Flow speaks of the intergenerational effects of the residential school experience and is now being adopted in high schools. He is a former chancellor of The Ontario College of Art and Design, a former member of the Blue Ribbon Panel on the future of Medical Education in Canada, and a former visiting fellow to Laurentian University's Aboriginal Studies Program. He is honorary patron to a number of organizations and causes.
James Bartleman was born in Orillia, Ontario and grew up in Port Carling. He is a member of the Chippewas of Rama First Nation.