Get To Know Our Keynotes

Darrel J. McLeod

Darrel J. McLeod is the author of Peyakow and Mamaskatch, which received the Govenor General’s Literary Award for Nonfiction. He is Cree from treaty eight territory in Northern Alberta. Before deciding to pursue writing in his retirement, McLeod was a chief negotiator of land claims for the federal government and executive director of education and international affairs with the Assembly of First Nations. He holds degrees in French literature and education from the University of British Columbia. He lives in Sooke, British Columbia.


Dr. Edward Josephs and Dr. Lynne Zettl founded the Canadian Foundation for Trauma Research and Education Inc. over 20 years ago. The Canadian Foundation for Trauma Research & Education (CFTRE) is a registered Canadian charity created to further the understanding of the fields of neurobiology & psychophysiology, through education and research, as they pertain to the treatment of traumatic conditions. They are committed to conduct research and to train professionals in effectively treating people who suffer from symptoms of trauma and other forms of dysregulation in the autonomic nervous system. They developed and have taught Self Regulation Therapy and Psychological Anatomy courses throughout North America, Europe, the U.K and Russia.

Anthony Johnson

Anthony Johnson has an incredible firsthand experience in growing up as Two-Spirit in a segregated and marginalized community. He has one of one of the most unique perspectives on the importance of acceptance and equal treatment regarding cultural, gender, sexuality, and racial differences.

Dr. James Makokis

Dr. James Makokis is well grounded in all matters relating to Indigenous cultures, traditions, values, and customs. He is one of Canada’s leading experts for Canadians and First Nation communities. Dr. Makokis will provide inspirational stories and practical insights on how his own experience in being excluded and segregated as a First Nation and Two Spirit person.

Joy Odidison

Joyce Odidison is a Conflict Analyst, Speaker, Author, Coach, thought leader, and the world’s leading expert on Interpersonal Wellness Competency Teaching. Joyce is the President of Interpersonal Wellness Services Inc. (IWS), an organizational development training and coaching firm, that provides workplace wellness education and hosts the annual Global Workplace Wellness Summit to promote diversity inclusion, resilience, mental wellness, emotional health, and psychological safety at work.

A key initiative for Joyce at IWS was to create and lead Coach Velocity School of Coaching, which is the only blackowned and led coach training school, offering the Wellness Competency Mindset Coaching curriculum since 2006.

Joyce is a C-Suite level workplace wellness expert working with governments, private sector, non-profits, and postsecondary institutions struggling with difficult work relationships, diversity and inclusion conflicts, discrimination, bullying, harassment, or other stressful interpersonal situations.

Joyce is an expert in her field, author of five books, a keynote speaker, and corporate trainer. Joyce is also a frequent TV guest expert who has been featured in print and online magazines around the world. Joyce is also host of the What’s Happening at Work podcast show

Kate Davis

Kate Davis has the unique ability to find humour in any situation and offers creative solutions to defuse frustrations in both the workplace and at home. A hit comedian, who has opened for the likes of Seth Meyers, Bill Clinton, and Barbara Walters, Davis’ generous insight and hilarious presence is a powerful combination that helps organizations empower their staff with effective tools for managing stress and sustaining motivation.

Theatrically trained in England, Davis went from a successful run on the Canadian stage to the many stages of motherhood, before she found her passion for comedy. Now she is a 12-time Canadian Comedy Awards nominee, including a nomination for the prestigious Phil Hartman Award, and the star of her own hour-long comedy special on CTV and the Comedy Network. In addition, Davis has appeared on Breakfast Television, Star TV, Toronto 1, Prime, WTN, TVO, and CBC Radio's The Debaters. She also stars, writes, and produces the hit web series “Best Before”, which won at the Canadian Comedy Awards, and was chosen for “Standup and Pitch” at the Just For Laughs Comedy Pro. In 2018, Davis joined the Debaters Live theatre tour with Live Nation.

On stage, Davis has performed at the Winnipeg Comedy Festival, the Hubcap Comedy Festival, and the Kitchener Waterloo Comedy Festival, while also headlining across the country. During the 2008 season of Last Comic Standing, Davis’ sense of humour endured and carried her into the finals in Canada.

As a writer, Davis has been published in Today’s Parent and Mom and Caregiver magazines. She is also the author of two books, The Breastfeeding Diaries, which won the iParenting media award, and Second Best Mom: Stories, Tips, and Okay Advice. In 2019, Davis released her comedy album, House Arrest.


Suite 255, Bonnie Doon Mall, 8330-82nd Ave
Edmonton, T6C 4E3, CA

About us

We are a collection of allies – a unified community of agencies that represents the diverse needs of Alberta’s children and families. We are proud to champion the work of our front line service providers and to support our members. Together, we are stronger.

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