The Defining Moments Canada Team
Neil Orford – President
Jenifer Terry – Executive Director
Anna England – Projects Manager & Digital Curator
Louis Lebel – Digital Content Manager
Janelle Bernard – Communications Manager
John Lorinc – Chief Editor
Vincent Sabourin – Videographer
Amy McBride Bowen – Project Support
Linn Øyen Farley – Website Design & Technical Expert
The Project Team
Bryce@100 Project Coordinator
Amanda Merpaw (she/elle) is a Franco-Ontarian writer, editor, researcher, and educator. She is originally from Ottawa and is currently based in Toronto, Dish With One Spoon Territory. Amanda has taught history and English in Ontario classrooms for nearly a decade, and has worked as an educational coach in justice-based practices and pedagogies. She is also an artist-educator and producer creating and supporting a range of performance projects and installations, including in documentary theatre. She is currently a doctoral student at the University of Toronto, where she explores the intersections of queerness, disability, writing, community, and the body.
Elder Randy Fred
Elder Randy Fred, or Uncle Randy, hails from the Tseshaht First Nation, in Port Alberni BC. After living in paradise in Barclay Sound he attended the Alberni Indian Residential School for 9 years. He was a plaintiff in the precedent-setting case, Blackwater, where the United Church of Canada and the Government of Canada were sued for sexual abuse. This case led to the Alternative Dispute Resolution and the formation of Reconciliation Canada. He began his working career in accounting. After a lifetime of working in multimedia he is now an Elder-in-Residence at Vancouver Island University.
Renee Allen is a multi-hyphenate Jamaican-born, Toronto-based, writer-educator, with a passion for working with children and youth. She is deeply committed to work that interrogates and addresses interlocking systems of oppression. Her writing appears in Zora, THIS magazine and PREE. Renee is also a recent graduate of the Masters of Teaching program at the University of Toronto, with a book collection that keeps outgrowing her bookcase.
Shy-Anne is an educator, musician, environmentalist and humanitarian. She lives off the land as much as she can for her and her family. Shy-Anne worked in education as a teacher for 18 years prior to taking on the role of Manager of Indigenous Education for SGGDB. She is working towards social justice through her work daily work and through her music. When she is not working, she is a mother, gardener and lover of all life, and does her best to live life in a good way while walking the dual path of Anishinaabe way of life and colonial life.
Robert Bell teaches at Dundas Central Public School in the Hamilton-Wentworth District School Board, where he works closely with local and national organizations to help enrich students’ learning. Robert is interested in the ways interdisciplinary approaches to learning deepen our understanding of complex ideas and issues. In 2019, he was a recipient of the Governor General’s History Award for Excellence in Teaching.
Brett Conway is currently a pre-service teacher at Concordia University of Edmonton. He has a M.A.s in
English Literature and Asian Studies from the University of Ottawa and Sejong University, South Korea.
He has taught at post-secondary schools in South Korea, Ontario, and Albera. He has published on a
variety of topics including trauma, gender identity, and post-modernism.
Brent Crane graduated from Nipissing University’s Concurrent Education Program with a BA Honours Specialization in Mathematics and a Minor in History in 2021. Brent’s passion for interdisciplinary education, particularly within his teachable subjects led him to work on educational resources for the Defining Moments Team. He hopes to create enthusiasm for Canadian history in learners across the nation.
Sakina Dhalla (she/her) is a visible Hijabi woman living and working on Treaty 6 land. Sakina graduated from the University of Alberta in 2016 with a Bachelor of Science, and from Concordia University of Edmonton in 2022 with a Bachelor of Education. She has 10 years of experience volunteering in an Elementary classroom, and recently began working as a teacher. Sakina has also written a chapter for an anthology (We Were Never Meant to Be Here) highlighting the experience of marginalized students in Canadian Universities which is scheduled to be published in 2023.
My 9 years of elementary school teaching have been shaped by a deep and long-held curiosity about other cultures and their relationship to the natural world. I have a keen interest in Indigenous ways of knowing and being in community, heavily inspired by learning and teaching time in Bhutan, Haida Gwaii, BC, Resolute Bay, NU, and Eabametoong First Nation, ON. My wonderings now include finding the intersection of Indigenous approaches to learning with the Reggio Emilia teaching pedagogy. I currently teach Grade 5 in Toronto and spend much of my days running through the ravine systems, reading in the grass, and getting to know different plants!
Laura Gini-Newman is a recently retired educator with over 30 years of experience working as a university professor, classroom teacher, resource teacher, coach and instructional co-ordinator. She has taught History, Geography, Politics, Philosophy, Computer Science, Economics, and Mathematics. Laura has developed a new reasoning-focused approach for math learning that she has been sharing in her role as the math consultant with The Critical Thinking Consortium working with students, teachers and leaders to become better thinkers in mathematics and other subject areas across Canada, in the USA, the Caribbean, Central and South America, Europe and Asia. She has published and co-authored textbooks, papers and learning resources in philosophy, history, mathematics, Indigenous education and most recently applied positive psychology. She is a certified applied positive psychology practitioner and co-founder of FlourishCo, a Canadian company that supports the cultivation of a flourishing mindset and that works with individuals, communities and businesses to help them learn how to flourish in their work and lives. Prior to her career in education, Laura worked as an economist and accountant. She has taught at both the University of Toronto and York University. She is also a professionally trained facilitator. Laura volunteers with the Alma Foundation to help young disadvantage learners in remote Andean villages experience learning success.
Garfield Gini-Newman is an Associate Professor in the Department of Curriculum, Teaching and Learning at OISE, University of Toronto. He explores how to teach through sustained critical inquiry while nurturing deep conceptual understanding and genuine competence. Garfield has worked with thousands of teachers across grades and subjects, helping them to frame learning around engaging and provocative activities and rich, authentic assessments. Currently, Garfield is engaged with schools across Canada, in South America, and in Europe. Over the past two decades request for Garfield’s services have taken him from Asia to the Middle East, Europe, the Caribbean and across North America. His interest in effective teaching and learning has led him to actively explore the challenges and opportunities presented by teaching and learning in the digital age. In addition to his work at the University of Toronto and delivering workshops, Garfield has also authored several articles, chapters in books and seven textbooks and has taught in the faculties of education at York University and the University of British Columbia. His most recent book co-authored with Roland Case, Creating Thinking Classrooms has received widespread praise from leading educators across Canada and internationally.
Emily Hoch is from Kitchener, Ontario, the traditional territory of the Neutral, Anishinaabeg and Haudenosaunee Peoples. Emily is a graduate of Brock University’s Concurrent Education program. As a non-Indigenous teacher, Emily strives to teach complex topics, disrupt hegemonic narratives in education, and make individual efforts to Indigenize curriculum, such as the K-8 Ontario Social Studies curriculum. Emily has held multiple Research Assistant positions in Indigenous education research projects, including an exploratory research project with teacher education students at Brock University’s Faculty of Education, Teaching from the Heart with Project of Heart: Teacher Candidate Professional Development in Indigenous Education.
Education Collaborator and Podcast Host
Stanley (Bobby) Henry, OCT, is of the Ball Deer Clan. He is a member of the Cayuga Nation, a nation of the Six Nations of the Haudenosaunee Confederacy. He is a community member of Six Nations of the River Territory and has spent 15+ years of his life in K-12 Cayuga language immersion education. He is a Ph.D. student in Trent University’s Ph.D. program in Indigenous Studies and holds a Master of Education degree in Indigenous Education from Lakehead University. Bobby is an Assistant Professor in Brock University’s Faculty of Education. His research interests are issues in Indigenous education, Indigenous language pedagogies and regeneration, and decolonizing and Indigenizing PK-12 education.
Leah Judd has a passion for teaching Social Studies. Working in Sechelt, BC, Leah has been lucky to work with students who embrace inquiry learning and created locker museum displays during the pandemic to share their curated stories with the school community. Leah shares her enthusiasm for Social Studies as editor of Salon, an online quarterly publication from the Social Studies Educators Network of Canada @ssencressc
Dr. Gail Lafleur
Dr. Gail Lafleur, Gitigaaningkwe-Garden Woman, is a member of Nipissing First Nation, Mink Clan. Her understanding of the importance of sharing our gifts comes from our original teacher and elder-Shkagamik-kwe (Mother Earth). She would like to honor her traditional teachings from the elders through sharing this gift of hope to future generations.
Sandra Lamouche is a Nehiyaw Iskwew (Cree Woman) from the Bigstone Cree Nation in Northern Alberta and married into the Piikani Nation in Southern Alberta and mother to two boys with braids. She completed her B.A. in Native American Studies from the University of Lethbridge in 2007. In 2021 she successfully defended her M.A. Thesis at Trent University, titled “Nitona Miyo Pimatisiwin (Seeking a Good Life) Through Indigenous Dance” which examines Indigenous Dance as a Social Determinant of Health and Well Being. Sandra is a multidisciplinary creator and storyteller, she is a Champion Hoop Dancer, award winning Indigenous Educational Leader, two-time TEDx Speaker, artist, and writer. Photo credit: Define Yourself Photography
I am a deeply curious human being. Although I do not think it is necessarily a healthy practice to see one’s job as a defining component of their identity, I identify as both a teacher and a student outside of the context of academia (and I am slowly beginning to identify as a writer). I have completed a Bachelor’s and Master of Science in physics at the University of Guelph; however, it was through completing the Master of Teaching program at OISE that I have come to appreciate the skills developed through my science education while simultaneously identifying the cognitive gaps that have formed by focusing my academic career on a singular way of knowing.
Based in Dundas, Ontario, Jen is currently a Kindergarten teacher with a passion for outdoor learning and inquiry-led, play-based programs. Before becoming a classroom educator in 2007, she studied International Development, with a focus on marginalized groups which led her to work at World Vision Canada. Her decision to move into public education was motivated by a deep desire to build relationships that inspire learners to ask questions and seek change. In both her personal and professional life, Jen is involved in a variety of leadership roles, including consulting, mentoring, and participating as a writer/contributor to various projects. Jen is a strong believer in life-long learning and passionate about nature and being outdoors; in this humbling space she has developed a commitment to advocate for Indigenous rights and is dedicated to equity, anti-racism, and inclusion.
Carmen Rodriguez de France
As an immigrant of Indigenous heritage from the Kickapoo Nation, Carmen acknowledges the privilege and responsibility that she holds to live and work on the land of the Songhees and Esquimalt Nations, and on the land of the W̱SÁNEĆ and the lək̓ʷəŋən people in British Columbia. Her work is always situated at the intersection of social justice, the scholarship of teaching and learning, and the experiences of in-service and pre-service teachers. She currently facilitates courses on Indigenous worldviews, Epistemologies, and Education in the Department of Indigenous Education at the University of Victoria. Her research is always motivated by her own interest to be a life-long learner and promote diversity and social justice.
As a former school teacher in México, Carmen understands the importance of developing and exploring approaches to teaching and learning as a tool to advance critical thinking. Through her participation in a variety of community-based initiatives in schools, recreational centres, art galleries, libraries, and other spaces for learning, her work focuses on creating awareness to better understand, appreciate, and learn from the histories and stories of the Indigenous people of Canada and other parts of the World. She is committed to strengthening collaborations between Indigenous and non-Indigenous people in Canada aiming to create a better shared future.
Yuntian Shi is a pre-service teacher based in Toronto. He is currently in the Master of Teaching program at the University of Toronto, and he holds a bachelor’s degree in political science and History from the University of Ottawa. He is interested in Social Studies curriculum and education policies. He has always been passionate about improving the quality of social studies education to create a better society.
Jessica Shortt is an Upper Grand District School Board secondary English and law teacher who lives in Guelph, Ontario. Jessica earned an Honours Bachelor of Arts from the University of Guelph, where she majored in English and minored in history, and a Bachelor of Education from the Schulich School of Education at Nipissing University. Here, she volunteered with the Biidaaban Community Service Learning after-school program for at-risk Indigenous children. In her professional practice, Jessica values providing students with opportunities to think critically and to engage in experiential learning, as well as to participate in co-curricular activities. As a settler, Jessica recognizes, and works to champion, the importance of reconciliation, and feels humbled to be part of the Bryce@100 team.
Scott Smalley is a new-service classroom teacher at the Secondary level. He has a B.A. in History and French Studies at Huron University and is completing his B.Ed at Western University (2023). He has a previous college diploma in Film Studies (2009) with honours at Fanshawe College. Scott previously worked on Defining Moments Canada’s Insulin 100 project as a researcher and curator of the Sir Frederick Banting exhibit. At Huron University he has worked as a Research Fellow under Dr. Tom Peace, and as a Research Assistant under Dr. Amy Bell. He was awarded the Huron Community History Centre’s Prize for Public History in 2020/21.
Megan Tipler (she/her/iskwew) is a Métis educator who resides in amiskwaciywâskahikan (Edmonton). She previously worked as a secondary English teacher, where she was committed to disrupting dominant narratives and celebrating and affirming her students’ identities in the classroom. In recent years, she moved beyond her classroom and started to use social media as a tool to share information and connect with other educators. She is presently working as a Program Support Coordinator for the Aboriginal Teacher Education Program (ATEP) at the University of Alberta. In her role, she supports future Indigenous teachers pursuing their Bachelor of Education degrees. Megan is also a student, currently pursuing her Masters in Secondary Education with a focus on Indigenous perspectives in curriculum and teacher education. She’s led an increasing number of professional learning sessions for educators, and this past year she had the opportunity to be an instructor for EDU 211, a required course for all pre-service teachers at the U of A, focused on Aboriginal perspectives in education. She is also a member of the Nîsohkamâkewin Council; an Indigenous-led advisory council focused on systemic change in Edmonton’s Police Service. In her spare time, she enjoys spending time with her family, coaching basketball, creating digital artwork, and sewing.
Certified by OTTIAQ in 2010, Anne-Chantal holds a master’s degree in French Studies from the University of Sherbrooke (1996) and has nearly 25 years of experience in translation. She has acquired a diverse clientele almost everywhere in Canada (Quebec, Ontario, Nunavut, Northwest Territories, Prince Edward Island, New Brunswick, Nova Scotia and Manitoba). In addition to the privilege of contributing to the promotion of the French language, Anne-Chantal translates for museums and organizations that, like Defining Moments Canada, cultivate the duty of remembrance and raise awareness about important chapters of history, some of which are dark and little known, particularly concerning Indigenous Peoples and veterans.
Dr. Crystal Gail Fraser is a Gwichyà Gwich’in scholar and consulting Historian with Defining Moments Canada. She is currently an assistant professor in History and Classics and the Faculty of Native Studies at the University of Alberta.
Christopher J. Rutty, Ph.D., is a professional historian with special expertise on the history of medicine, public health, infectious diseases and biotechnology in Canada. He earned his Ph.D. at the University of Toronto in the Department of History, with his dissertation on the history of poliomyelitis in Canada. For his Ph.D. Christopher was supervised by the late Professor Michael Bliss, author of the seminal book, The Discovery of Insulin, which serves as the foundational source for much of the insulin story he has developed for the “Insulin 100” project. Since completing his Ph.D. in 1995, Dr. Rutty has provided a wide range of historical research, writing, consulting and creative services to a variety of clients through his company, Health Heritage Research Services. Dr. Rutty holds an Adjunct Professor appointment in the University of Toronto’s Dalla Lana School of Public Health. He has also curated prominent historical exhibits, including on the discovery of insulin, most notably for the University of Toronto Faculty of Medicine to mark the 90th anniversary of the discovery. Dr. Rutty has also published several articles on the history of insulin, as well as books on the history of public health in Canada, the history of the Canadian Nurses Association, the history of St. Mary’s General Hospital in Kitchener, ON, as well as numerous articles in print and online on the history of polio and the history of vaccines.
Dr. Adam Green
Dr. Adam Green is a trained historian specializing in Canadian identities, research methodology, and comparative histories. He earned a doctorate in History and Canadian Studies from the University of Ottawa and a Master’s in History from Queen’s University, along with degrees in Developmental Psychology and Evaluation. Adam’s academic journey has included teaching at the undergraduate and graduate levels at the University of Ottawa and Bishop’s University, and positions as an Adjunct Professor and a Research Fellow at the University of Ottawa and Carleton University. Adam has been published on a range of topics, including Aboriginal history, Canadian- American relations, the digital humanities, and the history of Canadian identities. His Master’s thesis explored the life and work of Dr. Peter Bryce, and he has engaged in a range of scholarly, journalistic, and public activities centered on Dr. Bryce in the two decades since. Once a full-time academic, Adam currently works as a Director of Policy Development and Stakeholder Engagement in the federal public service. He lives in Ottawa, where he also takes part in a range of volunteer activities in his local community, notably in the service of furthering childrens’ education.
Contributing Writers and Researchers
Dr. Paul Hackett is an Associate Professor in the Department of Geography and Planning at the University of Saskatchewan, and a research faculty member in the Saskatchewan Population Health and Evaluation Research Unit. His research focusses on the historical impact of cultural change on Indigenous communities in Canada. Major subjects include the history of tuberculosis and the emergence of type 2 diabetes.
Émilie is an emerging freelance writer specialising in health and social justice. Her knowledge base includes an Honours Bachelor of Health Sciences & Psychology (uOttawa, 2013), a Master of Health Sciences in Occupational Therapy (uOttawa, 2015), and a certificate in Concurrent Disorders (University of Toronto & CAMH, 2022) along with years of experience in community mental health and acquired brain injuries. Emilie is passionate about effective positive social change – which she works to spark through education and meaningful discourse.
Miles Morrisseau is a Métis writer, journalist and multimedia producer from the Métis Homeland in Manitoba. He began his career as a writer/broadcaster for CBC Radio in Winnipeg. He produced documentaries on Sunday Morning, CBC radio’s flagship documentary program. As a national native affairs broadcaster, he covered the Mohawk Gambling War in Akwesasne, the Death of the Meech Lake Accord and was one of only mainstream journalists who had access behind the barricades during the Oka Crisis, entering on one of a handful of boats that smuggled in food and medicine. He was Editor-in-Chief of Nativebeat, the Beat of a Different Drum, which was chosen best Native American Monthly by the Native American Journalists Association (NAJA). He was Editor-in-Chief of Aboriginal Voices Magazine and Indian Country Today. He produced Buffalo Tracks with Evan Adams for APTN. As program manager for NCI-FM, Manitoba’s Indigenous Radio Network, he helped launch Streetz FM the first radio station by and for Indigenous youth in Winnipeg, MB. He has six children and seven grandchildren and has been with his partner Shelly Bressette for over 35 years. He lives in Grand Rapids, Manitoba on one of the last pieces of Métis land still in the hands of Métis people.
Dr. Madeleine Mant is an Assistant Professor in the Department of Anthropology at the University of Toronto Mississauga. Her biocultural research program examines health inequities in marginalized and institutionalized human groups through an interdisciplinary integration of bioanthropological and archival datasets. Her work investigates and amplifies previously unheard voices, demonstrating the powerful legacy of historical health in shaping health consequences and experiences today.
Vanessa (she/her) is a writer and 4th generation settler descendant of a family that engaged in marine missionary work for the United Church along the entire British Columbia coast from the early 1900s to 1960. In 2012, she inherited a box of previously unseen materials from her great grandfather (Captain Rev Robert C. Scott), which launched a decade of research and reckoning with her ancestors’ roles in colonization and residential schools. Her 100+ years of first-hand documents contain unique insights into the colonial mindset and one family’s intergenerational effort to confront this dark legacy and break the patterns of colonialism that get handed down from one generation to the next. She is writing about her reconciliation journey and document repatriation in collaboration with First Nations survivors and exploring what it means to have a
sense of belonging to this land as a descendant of residential school staff and missionaries. Her intention in sharing this story and materials is to help expose and challenge the ongoing crisis of
the settler colonial mindset and advocate for etuaptmumk/two-eyed seeing as a better path forward. She hopes her story is a guide to Canadians and youth who also are questioning their identities and connection to place, and for all of us who must face truth in order to change and move forward honourably. She lives on Vancouver Island, BC, on the territory of the K’omoks First Nation.