For generations, many Indigenous groups and communities have celebrated their culture and heritage on or around June 21 because of the significance of the summer solstice. It was made an official holiday in 1996 as an opportunity for Canadians to learn more about the richness and diversity of First Nations, Inuit, and Métis people.
In honour of National Indigenous Peoples Day, meet some of the prominent indigenous leaders and speakers we’re proud to represent. Plus, watch them in action and learn how, together, we can build a prosperous future for both Indigenous and non-Indigenous people.
Former National Chief of the Assembly of First Nations
For more than 35 years, Chief Perry Bellegarde has been at the forefront of Indigenous advocacy. He served as the National Chief of the Assembly of First Nations from 2014-2021, where he worked tirelessly to close the gap in quality of life between First Nations and other families in Canada.
As a keynote speaker, Perry equips audiences with a roadmap to building a new and just relationship between Indigenous and non-Indigenous peoples. He empowers audiences to become active allies on the path to true reconciliation.
Watch the video below as Perry shares his step-by-step plan to rectify the wrongs in our past and build a better and brighter future for all.
Award-Winning Journalist | Author of Seven Fallen Feathers
After the release of her first book, the national bestseller Seven Fallen Feathers, Tanya became the first Anishinaabe woman to deliver the CBC Massey Lectures in 2018. Her series, titled All Our Relations: Finding the Path Forward, explored the legacy of cultural genocide against Indigenous peoples, empowering audiences to learn from our past in order to build a future based on inclusivity and equity.
Tanya now heads up Makwa Creative Inc., a production company that shares Indigenous stories from across Canada and the world through documentary films, TV, and podcasts. She is also a columnist for the Globe and Mail.
Watch Tanya’s poignant first Massey lecture in the video below:.
The Honourable Jody Wilson-Raybould
Former Member of Parliament | Former Minister of Justice and Attorney General of Canada | Bestselling Author
The bestselling author of True Reconciliation, The Hon. Jody Wilson-Raybould wrote this book to answer an important question often asked of her — “what can I do to advance reconciliation?” She recognized that there was a gap in information available on how we, as individuals, can help make genuine and meaningful progress towards supporting Indigenous communities of Canada. So, she created an accessible and pragmatic guide.
Jody draws from her book in her powerful keynote speeches, where she shares her unique perspective as both a community and political leader to tackle important topics such as Indigenous rights and reconciliation, democracy and governance, leadership, and justice.
Watch the video below to learn how you can become an agent of change:
Award-Winning Entrepreneur, Author, and Indigenous Speaker
From Sweetgrass First Nation, Kendal Netmaker says he lives and thrives in two different worlds and uses his platform to help build a bridge between them.
Kendal joined us as part of our Virtual Speaker Series to present his keynote, “Indigenous Diversity, Awareness, and Education”. It is only through sharing and understanding Indigenous knowledge and history, he said, can we truly begin closing the gap between Indigenous and mainstream culture, and see a future where we are all working, succeeding, and prospering together.
Watch a clip from his powerful presentation below: