We’re thrilled to present a stellar slate of world-class keynote speakers. Addressing human rights and inclusion issues from a grassroots to global perspective, our keynote speakers will inspire new ways of thinking and change the way you see the world.
Samantha Nutt is an award-winning humanitarian, bestselling author and acclaimed public speaker. A medical doctor and a founder of the renowned international humanitarian organization War Child, Dr. Nutt has worked with children and their families at the frontline of many of the world’s major crises – from Iraq to Afghanistan, Somalia to the Democratic Republic of Congo, and Sierra Leone to Darfur, Sudan. A leading authority on current affairs, war, international aid and foreign policy, Dr Nutt is one of the most intrepid and recognized voices in the humanitarian arena and is amongst the most sought-after public speakers in North America. With a career that has spanned more than two decades and dozens of conflict zones, her international work has benefited hundreds of thousands of war-affected children globally.
A playwright, author, musician, and multilingual speaker, Tomson Highway is an award-winning and multi-talented Aboriginal artist. Highway has also found time to complement these great accomplishments with his work as a social worker, native artistic director, adjunct professor, and world traveller.
Bree-Anna Roberston is a self advocate from Prince George, BC. Bree-Anna has traveled around the world speaking about self determination and her own life, including the supports she receives through her micro-board. She recently addressed the World Congress of the International Association for the Scientific Study of Intellectual and Developmental Disabilities in Melbourne, Australia. Bree-Anna also presented at the 2014 International Association for the Scientific Study of Intellectual and Developmental Disabilities Conference in Vienna and at the Zero Project in 2015, also in Vienna.
Sally Armstrong is a Canadian human rights activist, journalist and author. She has covered stories in zones of conflict all over the world. From Bosnia and Somalia to Congo and Afghanistan, her eyewitness reports have earned her the Amnesty International Media Award three times over, as well as acclaim all over the world. Armstrong shares her experiences reporting from the front lines and imparts her audiences with the lessons she’s learned from the battlefields surrounding the complexities of “human rights” versus “human wrongs.”
Armstrong is a former member of the International Women’s Commission at the UN and a member of the Order of Canada. She is also the recipient of ten honorary doctorate degrees.
Symbia Barnaby is a woman of Mi’kmaq/Haida decent. She is a single mother of six children (three of which have special needs), a story teller and a Licensed Practical Nurse team lead at a complex care facility. She is an avid advocate for her children and has help others in her community to find their voices. She was one of the main organizers for the First Annual Autism Walk and the First Annual Missing and Murdered Indigenous Women’s Memorial Vigil in her community of Prince Rupert, B.C. She brings with her experiences from many different lenses; Indigenous woman, mother, daughter, sister, client, and service provider.