For Questions /  Contact us at rbsconferencequeens@gmail.com

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We are grateful to host this conference on traditional Anishinaabe and Haudenosaunee Territory.

SPEAKERS 

Keynote Speaker "Seeing Indigenous Faces"

Jenn Harper

Jennifer Harper has been making a name for herself in the beauty industry for a number of years but has been gaining popularity quickly after being on the hit CBC show, Dragons Den. Cheekbone Beauty is helping Indigenous youth see themselves in a beauty brand. Having founded Cheekbone Beauty four and a half years ago, she has tirelessly worked a full-time high-level sales job in Toronto, Ontario while living in Niagara. It was important to her to raise her children with her husband in the place she grew up. Throughout her life, Jenn struggled to accept her Indigenous roots as she lived with her Caucasian mother. She was estranged from her Indigenous family for much of her child and adult life. After learning about her grandmother’s experience in residential schools, she understood how her family was affected by generational trauma. This drove her to understand and overcome her own struggle with alcoholism. She reunited with her family including her brother B. J., and began to learn about and explore her Indigenous family history and culture. During the development of Cheekbone Beauty, Jenn researched the current makeup landscape as well as charities that are helping close the educational funding gap that exists between Indigenous and non-Indigenous students. After in depth research, the Cheekbone team found the First Nations Child & Family Caring Society (FNCFCS) and the connection between their mission and Jenn’s family experience was serendipitous. 

Panel Speaker

"Barriers of Growing a Business"

John Rowinski

John Rowinski is currently a Partner at Fogler, Rubinoff LLP. Prior to joining Foglers, John was the founder of the firm Two Row Law on the Mississaugas of Scugog Island First Nation. John practices dispute resolution for his Indigenous clients as well as in the realm of commercial, environmental and professional negligence litigation. John appears before all levels of court and various administrative tribunals on motions, trials, applications and appeals. He provides counsel to First Nations, Indigenous organizations, individuals, charities and corporations in a range of matters including litigation, negotiation, consultation, land claims, government relations, economic development, agreements, contracts, policies, community governance and Reserve management. John is Kanyen’kehà:ka, a member of the Mohawks of the Bay of Quinte (Tyendinaga). He is also a member of the Indigenous Bar Association, past executive of the CBA and OBA Aboriginal law sections, an experienced Director, a law school instructor and a frequent speaker at Aboriginal law conferences and workshops across Canada. John has been recognized as a leading lawyer in Aboriginal Law in the Best Lawyers in Canada legal directory.

Panel Speaker

"Barriers of Growing a Business"

Larry Hay

Larry Hay is the founder of Intelliquest Investigations, which provides services to First Nation elected Chiefs & Councils in Canada as well as federal government investigations. Previously, he was Chief of Police for the Tyendinaga Mohawk Police Service and an RCMP Senior Investigator. 

Panel Speaker & Workshop Host

"Barriers of Growing a Business"

Jonathon Redbird

Jonathon Araujo Redbird, European & Odawa Ojibway ancestry, created a lifestyle of balancing the duality of the world. Jonathon is the Co-Founder of Pontiac Group Inc., a socioeconomic development firm that supports business development on-reserve through capacity building, access to capital, and access to sustainable economic investment opportunities. Jonathon has been an entrepreneur for 17 years developing internal and external skills in human and financial development. Jonathon has visited over 220 Indigenous communities across Mother Earth teaching the pathway to obtaining Knowledge while develop his own practise of Financial Advising, Real Estate Development, and Venture Capital. Spent 4 weeks in Maori Aotearoa lands and water learning from Waikato Tainui and Ngai Tahu. Jonathon has been involved with UAV Delivery Technologies, the full span of Cannabis and the development of an Indigenous Centre for Innovation and Entrepreneurship (ICIE). Jonathon has worked with many people from many sectors and believe the key to success is people and strategy; developing a strong strategic plan that empowers our people to implement a winning system to thrive on Mother Earth.

Panel Speaker

"Economic Reconciliation and the Practice of Indigenous Law"

Dean Mark Walters

Mark Walters is Professor and Dean of Law at Queen's University. He studied at the University of Western Ontario, Queen’s University, and Oxford University. After practising law briefly, he joined the Faculty of Law at Queen’s in 1999, where he remained until he was appointed F.R. Scott Professor of Public and Constitutional Law at McGill University in 2016. He returned to Queen’s as Dean of Law on July 1, 2019. Dean Walters researches and publishes in the areas of public and constitutional law, legal history, and legal theory, with a special emphasis on the rights of Indigenous peoples, institutional structures, and the history of legal ideas.

Panel Speaker

"Economic Reconciliation and the Practice of Indigenous Law"

Jaimie Lickers

Jaimie is a partner at Gowling WLG's and the national leader of the firm's Indigenous Law Group. Jaimie’s practice is focused on the structuring and drafting of trust deeds for Indigenous communities, financial services and lending for First Nations, First Nations tax law, and the provision of policy advice in relation to education, social services and membership law. She also has considerable experience providing advice related to environmental protection and assessment and Indigenous consultation and accommodation issues. Jaimie is an experienced litigator and has appeared before the Supreme Court of Canada, the Ontario Superior Court of Justice, the Tax Court of Canada, the Federal Court of Canada, the Federal Court of Appeal and the Ontario Court of Appeal. She presents regularly at conferences on topics related to First Nations trusts and taxation, membership and identity issues, Indigenous litigation, and consultation and accommodation. In 2019, Jaimie was distinguished as one of Canada's "Top 25 Most Influential Lawyers" by Canadian Lawyer. She was recognized as a leading practitioner in Indigenous law by Lexpert in 2018, and she was listed for three consecutive years in Benchmark Litigation's "Under 40 Hot List." In 2017, she was also awarded a Lexpert Zenith Award – an honour that celebrates the advancement of women who have demonstrated excellence and thought leadership in the legal profession. Prior to entering the practice of law, Jaimie worked for the Chiefs of Ontario and the Aboriginal Institutes' Consortium.

Panel Speaker

"Economic Reconciliation and the Practice of Indigenous Law"

Hugo Choquette

Hugo Choquette has a PhD from the Queen’s Faculty of Law. Before returning to Queen’s Law to pursue graduate studies, he practiced in a small law office in Napanee, Ont. His research interests include language and law, constitutional law, and Aboriginal law. Over the last few years, he has taught introductory law courses both at the Faculty of Law and at Smith School of Business.

Panel Speaker

"Why Indigenous Business is Good Business"

Jake Dockstator

Jake joined Bridging Finance in 2017. Since joining he has taken a lead role in all aspects of Bridging Finance’s private investment management activities with a focus on the growth and monitoring of the Indigenous lending portfolio across Canada. Jake is Mohawk with First Nations status and is a member of Oneida of the Thames First Nation. Jake has received a traditional education from a young age which has enhanced his perspective and allows him to bridge specialized connections between communities and Bridging Finance. Jake received his Bachelor degree at Trent University before moving on to complete his Juris Doctor at Osgoode Hall Law School and thereafter this Masters of Business Administration from the Degroote School of Business at McMaster University.

Panel Speaker

"Why Indigenous Business is Good Business"

Brendon Grant

Brendon is a member of the Haisla Nation, a British Columbia coastal First Nations community near the port of Kitimat. He is a Managing Director with Bridging Finance, an Indigenous led financial services firm based in Toronto, ON. Brendon has been working to support First Nations economic development since 2012, when he graduated with a Bachelor of Commerce in Finance. Now he is a Managing Director with Bridging Finance and supports First Nations economic development project lending through the Indigenous Impact Fund. Bridging Finance created the Indigenous Impact Fund in 2019 to help address a growing access to capital gap facing First Nations and Inuit communities across Canada. The Indigenous Impact Fund helps create prosperity at individual and community levels through financing economic development projects including housing, commercial/retail development, infrastructure and natural resource sectors, among others. The projects we lend to create jobs, training opportunities, and Own Source Revenue streams that can be used to reinvest in future projects that further enhance people's lives, often in rural communities.

Workshop Host

"Negotiations"

Mark Dockstator

Dr. Mark S. Dockstator was appointed President of the First Nations University of Canada in July 2014. A member of the Oneida Nation of the Thames, he has been an Associate Professor, Indigenous Studies, at Trent University since 1997. He received his Juris Doctor (J.D.) Degree from Osgoode Hall Law School, York University. In 1994, he was the first First Nations person to graduate with a doctorate in law. His doctoral dissertation, entitled “Toward an Understanding of Aboriginal Self Government,” is a blend of Indigenous and Western knowledge and was used as a foundation for the Royal Commission on Aboriginal Peoples’ final report.

Dr. Dockstator has served as founding Chairman of the First Nations’ Statistical Institute, Senior Negotiator and Researcher for the Assembly of Manitoba Chiefs, President and CEO of Rama Economic Development Corporation, Special Advisor to the Royal Commission on Aboriginal People and Special Advisor to the Chief Commissioner of the Indian Land Claims Commission. Dr. Dockstator has a great deal of business experience and has a specific research expertise in Aboriginal issues, having served as Principal Investigator on an array of national and regional research projects in areas such as Aboriginal health, treaties, Aboriginal languages and culture, education and economic development.

Opening Remarks

Dean Brenda Brouwer

Dr. Brouwer was appointed interim dean of the Smith School of Business at Queen’s University in 2019 after completing a one year secondment with the Vector Institute for Artificial Intelligence (AI) in Toronto as Head, Academic Partnerships. In this role she developed and led the talent development initiative cultivating relationships between universities and industry to support a talent pipeline of well-trained graduates that organizations at the forefront of AI seek. Before Vector, Dr. Brouwer was Vice-Provost and Dean of the School of Graduate Studies (Queen’s) for eight years and provided national leadership in graduate education as President of the Canadian Association for Graduate Studies from 2015-2017. Dr. Brouwer is a professor in the Faculty of Health Science, has a PhD in Neuroscience and her research focuses on quantifying the biomechanical, neuromuscular and metabolic demands of mobility in healthy aging and stroke.