Day 1 – Thursday, March 7th
8:00 – 8:45 AM
Registration & Breakfast
8:45 – 9:30 AM
Opening Prayer – Elder Martha Jonasson
Co-Chair – Doris Young and Donna Carriere
Welcoming Remarks – Charlene Lafreniere & Edwin Jebb and Dignitaries
9:30 – 10:30AM
Senator Yvonne Boyer
10:30 – 10:45AM
10:45 – 11:45AM
Province of Manitoba Update
Helen Robinson Settee, Director, Indigenous Inclusion Directorate
11:45 – 12:45PM
12:45 – 2:00PM
The Culture is in the Language
2:00 – 2:15PM
2:15 – 3:30PM
Sports & Reconciliation School Panel
Panelists: Dan Highway, Philip Michel
5:30 – 9:00PM
Dinner & Keynote Address
Max FineDay, Executive Director, Canadian Roots Exchange
Day 2 – Friday, March 8th
8:00 – 9:00AM
9:00 – 9:15AM
Recap of Day One
Overview of Day Two
9:15 – 10:15AM
Narrative Matters: Stories Towards Reconciliation
10:15 – 10:30AM
10:30 – 11:15PM
The Effects of Hydro to Peoples and Communities in the North
11:15AM – 12:00PM
12:00 – 1:00PM
1:00 – 2:15PM
Former National Chief of the Assembly of First Nations
2:15 – 2:45PM
Closing Song – Joe A Ross School
Closing Prayer – Elder Martha Jonasson
Sam McKegney is a settler scholar of Indigenous literatures and an Associate Professor at Queen’s University in the territory of the Haudenosaunee and Anishinaabe Peoples.
He has published a collection of interviews entitled Masculindians: Conversations about Indigenous Manhood (2014), a monograph entitled Magic Weapons: Aboriginal Writers Remaking Community after Residential School (2007), and articles on such topics as environmental kinship, masculinity theory, prison writing, decolonial activism, and Canadian hockey mythologies.
Senator Yvonne Boyer is a member of the Métis Nation of Ontario with her ancestral roots in the Métis Nation-Saskatchewan and the Red River.
With a background in nursing, including in the operating room, she has over 21 years of experience practicing law and publishing extensively on the topics of Indigenous health and how Aboriginal rights and treaty law intersects on the health of First Nations, Metis and Inuit people. She is a member of the Law Society of Ontario and the Law Society of Saskatchewan and received her Bachelor of Laws from the University of Saskatchewan, and her Master of Laws and Doctor of Laws from the University of Ottawa. In 2013, she completed a Post-Doctoral Fellowship with the Indigenous Peoples’ Health Research Centre at the University of Regina. She is a former Canada Research Chair in Aboriginal Health and Wellness at Brandon University.
In addition to running her own law practice, she came to the Senate of Canada from the University of Ottawa, where she was the Associate Director for the Centre for Health Law, Policy and Ethics and a part time professor in the Faculty of Law. She worked previously as counsel to the Native Women’s Association of Canada, legal advisor to the Canadian Nurses Protective Society, and an executive with the Aboriginal Healing Foundation and the National Aboriginal Health Organization.
Helen Settee has been working with the Department of Education and Training since 1995. Some of her work includes representing Manitoba on the Council of Ministers Education Canada on the Indigenous Education Committee, Partner Lead with the Manitoba Aboriginal Languages Strategy and Steering Committee member for the Treaty Education Initiative to name a few. She also participates on community based committees In Winnipeg such as Ka Ni Kanichihk Inc. Council and Indigenous Learning Circle.
Previous to her work as Director, she was an education consultant and a teacher in Winnipeg School Division, which included teaching at the two Aboriginal inner-city schools – Children of the Earth and Niji Mahkwa. She was born and raised in the inner city of Winnipeg and always wanted to come back to teach in the schools where she was a student. She was convinced that with the racism she felt as a student in her adolescent years, in her adult years she had to somewhat influence change by being a role model and to be a change agent.
Aside from being an educator, she is also the mother of two adult sons, Craig and Kevin and a grandmother to Ogimaabinens.
Dr. Ramona Neckoway is an Assistant Professor at University College of the North (Thompson Campus) and currently serves as the Chair of its Aboriginal Northern Studies Program. She is a co-investigator on a Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council (SSHRC) Partnership Grant, Wa Ni Ska Tan: A Cross-Regional Research Alliance focused on the Implications of Hydropower for Environments & Indigenous Communities in Canada and Beyond.
For more than a decade, Ramona has listened to and learned about local perspectives and histories as they relate to implications of hydropower and as a member of a Hydro-affected community in northern Manitoba (Nisichawayasihk Cree Nation), her research is shaped by the experiences and encounters of her family and her community.
Dr. Neckoway is also co-lead on a Natural Sciences and Engineering Research Council of Canada (NSERC) funded project designed to offer opportunities for Indigenous youth to learn about the natural sciences in culturally relevant and meaningful ways. Shaped by both Indigenous customs and practices and Western scientific traditions, this cross-cultural and interdisciplinary initiative locates science education through land-based learning opportunities grounded in, and that draw from, culturally rich Indigenous worldviews.
Philip Michel was born and raised in Brochet, Manitoba on the Barren Lands First Nation. Philip now resides in Thompson, Manitoba. He is married with a blended family of six children, twenty grandchildren and six great grandchildren.
He attended the Guy Hill Residential School on Clearwater Lake for seven years, and Assiniboia High School in Winnipeg for two years. Philip has been sober and on a healing journey for over thirty years. Philip has worked mostly in the native field for various organizations including seven years as Chief of his First Nation. Philip has worked on the various phases of the residential school issue for the past eighteen years. Philip is now retired and is a recognized Elder in Native Spirituality.
Bold, tenacious, solution-oriented and forward-looking, Phil Fontaine is an articulate advocate for the future of Canada and for our indigenous peoples. As the former three-term National Chief of the Assembly of First Nations, he is a shining example of how strong leadership can work.
Fontaine, the youngest son in an Ojibway family of 12 children, has been instrumental in facilitating change and advancement for First Nations people from the time he was first elected to public office as chief, when he was only 28 years old. Today, First Nations people are now the fastest growing demographic segment in Canada. An advocate for human rights, and a survivor of residential school abuse, Fontaine’s crowning achievement to date is the residential schools settlement. At $5.6billion in individual compensation, Fontaine negotiated the largest settlement in Canadian history – for the largest human rights violation in Canadian history – arising out of the 150-year Indian residential school tragedy.
Phil Fontaine is a charismatic speaker who has dedicated most of his life to the advancement of First Nations people. Respected at home and abroad, Fontaine attended President Obama’s inauguration, met with Pope Benedict XVI to gain an apology for his people, and raised the Corporate Challenge to Canadian organizations. Corporations, governments and associations seeking leadership advice will benefit from Fontaine’s extraordinary ability to speak from the heart and teach others how to achieve results.
Ron Cook was a fisherman on Lake Winnipeg for 15 years and lived a traditional lifestyle with his wife and five daughters. In 1992, his interest in his first language (nehinawewin) inspired him to enter BUNTEP when they offered a program for training Native Language teachers, graduating in 1997 with greatest distinction.
He taught Cree at Grand Rapids School for five years before he moved to Thompson to teach at Wapanohk Community School in the Cree bilingual program. He was the Cree Language/Indigenous Perspectives Coordinator for the School District of Mystery Lake from September 2006 until he retired in June 2018. He is currently the curriculum consultant for the Centre for Aboriginal Language and Culture at the University College of the North.
A member of the Opaskwayak Cree Nation (OCN), Edwin Jebb was one of the first Aboriginal graduates of the University of Manitoba. Edwin is retired from the Opaskwayak Education Authority where he spent 19 years heading OCN’s school system, developing education programs and promoting healthy lifestyles for Manitoba’s First Nations people.
An active volunteer in his community, Edwin was a member of the implementation team tasked with developing the University College of the North. Edwin has received numerous awards throughout his career including the Brandon University’s Teacher Education Program Meritorious Service Award, the Frontier School Division Award and was named to the Order of Manitoba in 2000. Edwin was installed as the University College of the North’s second Chancellor in June 2011.
Daniel was born in Northern Manitoba, somewhere in the trapline north of Brochet and attended residential school in The Pas and Clearwater Lake (1955-1966). He went to high school in Winnipeg at Assiniboia Residential School (1966-1969) for one year before transferring to St. Boniface High School. He started working in construction and mining, then for the Manitoba Government for 27 years in Northern Affairs and the Highways Department, Human Resources until he retired in 2005.
Daniel volunteered in the community sitting on numerous boards (12) and many committees for Aboriginal people and youth. He was awarded with The Bill Hanson and IANE Award for his work in promoting native employment in Canada and the Province of Manitoba and the DFan Highway Equity and Diversity Award for his work in promoting native employment in the provincial government.
Daniel won the Theres Grasgrain Award as Canadian Male Volunteer of the Year for his volunteer work in the coomumity. He also does the “Walk a Mile in my Mocassins” one-day workshop on cultural awareness and worked for SNC. He worked for Lavalin Construction Company as an Aboriginal Laison for Native Communitites on contract, and now works for residential school survivors by providing resources for “Spiritual Healing and Cultural Renewal”.