Speaker series


You’re invited to the 2016-17 Speaker Series at the First Peoples’ House at the University of Victoria on Coast and Straits Salish traditional territory from September 2016 - March 2017. 

Everyone is welcome to attend the 7th annual series which focuses on research towards improving the health and wellbeing of Indigenous peoples.

We ask that participants support us in creating a culturally safe and respectful learning environment. 

Presentations are from 11:30am-1pm on the last Tuesday of the month, at the First Peoples’ House at the University of Victoria (unless otherwise specified).

What you’ll take away:

  • Learn about the ongoing work of researchers and communities
  • Be inspired to participate in community and research projects and events, or explore these themes in your studies or work
  • Connect with students, academics, and community members who share interests with you

September 27 - Dr. Charlotte Loppie

"Role of research in the TRC"

Dr. Loppie is of Mi’kmaq and Acadian ancestry, and has spent her academic career working within the field of Indigenous health research.

This lecture will explore the role of research in relation to the TRC Calls to Action. Included in this lecture will be the outcome of a gathering with Indigenous community members, academics and students at the 2016 CIRCLE Gathering, as well as an analysis of current research that should guide strategic plans for reconciliation.

October 25 - Dr. Nick Claxton

"Indigenous Research & Resurgence"

Nick is from the SȾÁUTW̱ Community of the W̱SÁNEĆ Nation. Strongly rooted in his Indigenous community and culture, Nick’s research and teaching interests include the revitalization of Indigenous knowledge systems and land/water based practices, which he believes provide important lessons in sustainable living.

Nick received his PhD in Educational Studies from UVIC where he is also an Assistant Teaching Professor in Indigenous Education.

November 29 - Dr. Billie Allan

"Gathering old knowledge and carrying it forward: Research as "helper in addressing the impact of racism on Indigenous health and well-being"

Billie is an Anishinaabe-kwe from Sharbot Lake, Ontario. She trained and worked as a social worker in the areas of health, mental health and child welfare, and as an Indigenous health researcher focusing on the health and well-being of Indigenous women.

She recently joined the UVic School of Social Work as an Assistant Professor.

January 31 (12-1:30pm) - Dr. Paul Whitinui

"Indigenous MINDS: Freeing ourselves to passionately engage across disciplines" 

Dr. Whitinui is currently an Assistant Professor at the University of Victoria, School of Exercise Science, Physical and Health Education in the Faculty of Education.

As an Indigenous New Zealand Māori scholar, his ancestral links connect him to Ngā Puhi, Te Aupōuri, and Ngāti Kurī on his Dad’s side, and French, Irish, Welsh and English on his mother’s side.

His scholarly work pertains to the sociology of sport and leisure, Indigenous education, and exploring the key determinants underpinning Indigenous health and development. His doctoral thesis completed in 2007, explored the educational benefits associated with Indigenous Māori high school students participating in Māori Performing Arts (i.e., kapa haka) in Aotearoa New Zealand, which was published as a book in 2008.

Dr. Whitinui was also the lead editor, and contributor for two other books focusing on Māori educational success as well as, new and emerging Māori academic leadership published by the New Zealand Council of Educational Research (NZCER) in 2011, and the University of Otago Press in 2013.

As an Associate Professor in Māori Teacher Education from 2012-2015, he was responsible for the strategic, academic and professional development of culturally responsive practices based in the College of Education - Te Kura Akau Taitoka, University of Otago, Dunedin, New Zealand. He was also responsible for co-ordinating a new Māori-medium 0-8 yrs. endorsement for the one-year Graduate Diploma of Teaching as well as, designed and taught a new online postgraduate course in Indigenous educational leadership between 2014-2015.

Between 2010-2012, he championed a new major in Māori Health and designed, and taught a new post-graduate Indigenous research methods course based in Aotahi – School of Maori and Indigenous Studies at the University of Canterbury, New Zealand. Academic distinctions include a John Ranton McIntosh (University of Saskatchewan), Lansdowne (University of Victoria), and Queen’s University Aboriginal Teacher Education visiting scholar (2008, 2013, & 2015), as well as two national Indigenous Māori academic excellence awards (2002, & 2007).

Presently, he is the co-chair of the World Indigenous Research Alliance, and reviewer for the online World Indigenous Nations Higher Education Consortium journal. Dr. Whitinui also resides on a number of professional, scholarly, and institutionally-based committees.

February 28 - Dr. Heidi Stark

"Narrating the Nation-State: The Story of Aboriginal Title"

Heidi Kiiwetinepinesiik Stark is Turtle Mountain Ojibwe and a member of the lynx clan. She is an Assistant Professor of Political Science at the University of Victoria. Her research interests include Aboriginal and Treaty rights and Indigenous politics in the United States and Canada.

She is the co-author of American Indian Politics and the American Political System (with David Wilkins) and the co-editor of Centering Anishinaabeg Studies: Understanding the World Through Stories (with Jill Doerfler and Niigaanwewidam Sinclair, 2013).

March 28 - Dr. Devi Mucina

"Decolonizing Indigenous Masculinities"

Devi Dee Mucina is an Indigenous Ubuntu from the Ngoni and Shona people of southern Africa. He received his PhD from the Ontario Institute for Studies in Education, department of Sociology and Equity Studies, University of Toronto.

His academic interests are Indigenous African philosophies, decolonizing Indigenous masculinities, Indigenous fathering and other-fathering, and using Ubuntu oralities and disability studies to understand the social memory of Indigenous children.