In 2023, we focused on Sustainable Pathways to Reconciliation. We hosted 25 leading professionals in the field on February 10th and 11th, 2023.
Between online and in person participation, we were able to meet an incredible 160 of you. This is record-breaking for us, and we cannot thank you enough. We hope that you loved it as much as we did, and that we see you again in the future.
Welcome back to
Our 2023 conference was record breaking for us in so many ways - a record year for sponsorship, for attendees, for speakers, and of course, our first year back in-person after COVID-19. In total, we had an incredible 180 people attend our sessions - that's more than double our goal, and is triple what our attendance had been in previous years. From the bottom of our hearts, thank you.
Our 2023 attendees still have access to our event recordings through the link sent to your inboxes. You will always have access to these sessions in this way.
We are so incredibly honored to have had the attention and lessons that we did from our speakers this year. From the emotionally charged keynote address by Wayne Garnons-Williams, to resolving disagreements on our panels, exploring beadwork and its connection to the law, and finally closing with keynote Larissa Crawford on honoring the self, earth, and community as part of Reconciliation, we will remain forever in awe of our speakers.
Sustainable Pathways to Reconciliation
This was a conversation about
The idea of ‘sustainability’ might conjure ideas of environmentalism for many, but we didn't limit ourselves to this theme. Of course, environmentalism is a necessary part of the conversation, but for us, sustainability is about durability, flexibility, and resilience.
How do we make the steps that we take towards Reconciliation meaningful, and lasting? What resources do we need, and where are they most needed? Who needs to be brought more intentionally into the conversation, of both colonizers and Indigenous peoples? What learning and unlearning needs to happen, before we can say we are moving in a sustainable direction at all?
These are the questions that we repeatedly asked ourselves, our speakers, and our delegates this year, in the hopes that this conversation will further Reconciliation efforts both in our individual lives, and as we strive for broader institutional change. We urge participants to seek out the work of Indigenous scholars, legal and business professionals, and community organizers, and to put what you learned in the course of this conference and in your own pursuits into action.
RECONCILIATION - THE 60S SCOOP TO INHERENT INDIGENOUS ECONOMIC RIGHTS
Wayne Garnons-Williams opened our conference with a moving discussion of the ongoing legacies of the 60s scoop, the regimes that continue to perpetuate 60s scoop harms, and the lasting effects on Indigenous communities.
HONORING SELF, EARTH, AND COMMUNITY
We joined Larissa Crawford back at the Tett Center for dinner and to talk about how sustainability is part of honoring ourselves and others, and how it plays into our ability to show up for our communities as our best selves.
We absolutely loved the discussions from both of our keynotes this year. We got angry, choked up, and were hopeful right along Wayne Garnons-Williams as he took us through his experience as a 60s scoop survivor. We are forever in awe of him and his resilience. That evening, Larissa Crawford took us through the finer details of sustainability as both an environmental consideration and as our own resilience in these conversations and ability to show up for our communities and, eventually, our clients.
You might also notice in some of our images that we welcomed children into our spaces this year. We hope that this is a tradition that continues - as our future, we believe that it is absolutely crucial that children are welcomed into these spaces to make Reconciliation one of their foundational principles, but also because children are some of the best creative thinkers that we have access to.
We're also very proud of our conference stats this year. Want to know some demographic info, or other stats about our planning? Check them out below!
This was the first year that we returned to in-person attendance. While we fully recognize that the pandemic was still ongoing at the time of our conference, we are so, so grateful that we were able to meet you all on campus and come together for this conference. The atmosphere and energy of our spaces was phenomenal, and we truly felt a sense that you each brought your best self to these discussions, and to connecting with each of our team members and speakers.
We should note that the pandemic hit Indigenous communities particularly hard, and continues to do so. Access to health is unequal, the health care being offered to many communities is far-flung or otherwise inaccessible, and many Indigenous communities' economies are dependent on an ability for workers to show up in person and to stay healthy. There is much work that needs to be done to make sure that when the next health crisis happens, these communities are not left behind, and to make sure that the access to wellness and health care is ready to respond, pandemic or not.
All of the information that we have on our events is available in our conference program, but we'll also be releasing a post-conference report approximately one month after the conference. Stay tuned for more in-depth information about 2023!
Sticky Note Wall & Gallery
Check out what some of our attendees had to say about our 2023 conference, and what their takeaways of the day were. Images will open in a pop-up for easier reading when clicked.
Find a selection of some images from the conference after these messages.
Dean Mark Walters
Dean Wanda Costen
Professor Anya Hageman
Grand Council Chief Niganobe
Laura J Murray
Professor Lindsay Borrows
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Birch Hill Equities
Lawson Lundell LLP
Principal's Student Initiatives Fund
Student Affairs Fund
Four Directions Indigenous Students Center
Queen's University Law Alumni Network
Principal's Inclusive Community Fund
With Support From
Queen’s Women & Law
Office of the Principle