Keynote Speakers



Florence Williams

Florence WilliamsFlorence Williams is a journalist, author, and podcaster. Her first book, BREASTS: A Natural and Unnatural History received the Los Angeles Times Book Prize in science and technology and the 2013 Audie in general nonfiction. The Nature Fix was an Audible bestseller and was named a top summer read by J.P  Morgan. Her latest book, Heartbreak, was called “show-stopping” and “courageous” by Publisher’s Weekly. She is a contributing editor at Outside Magazine and a freelance writer for the New York Times and numerous other publications. A fellow at the Center for Humans and Nature and a visiting scholar at George Washington University, Florence’s work focuses on the environment, health and science. A certified forest-bathing guide and experienced workshop leader, Florence loves leading groups through nature-immersive experiences and watching the transformation, connection, and healing that result. 

Candace Savage

Candace SavageCandace Savage was born in the Peace River Country of northern Alberta and educated at the University of Alberta. She is the award-winning author of more than two dozen books for adults and children, including Strangers in the House, A Geography of Blood (recipient of the $60,000 Hilary Weston Writers’ Trust Prize for Nonfiction,) and Prairie: a natural history, among others.

A Fellow of the Royal Society of Canada and the Royal Canadian Geographical Society, she received both the Kloppenburg Award for Literary Excellence and the Matt Cohen Award for a Writing Life in 2023. In addition to her work as a writer, she plays accordion in the Saskatoon Fiddle Orchestra, chairs Wild about Saskatoon and co-chairs the Swale Watchers, serves on advisory boards for CPAWS Saskatchewan and the Meewasin Valley Authority and is a member of the National Council of The Writers Union of Canada. She lives and writes in Saskatoon, Saskatchewan.

Joely BigEagle-Kequahtooway

Joely BigEagle-Kequahtooway is an inter-disciplinary artist. She is a fashion and textile designer,  visual artist, beader, storyteller and co-founder of the Buffalo People Arts Institute. She comes  from a long line of Buffalo hunters and is Nakota/Cree/Saulteaux from the White Bear First  Nations - signatory to Treaty 4. She has degrees in Civil Engineering from the University of  Calgary and Mathematics from the First Nations University of Canada. She is currently in the  Master of Fine Arts program at the Institute of American Indian Art in Santa Fe, New Mexico. She  loves to incorporate mathematics and geometry in her artwork and is inspired by the perfect  symmetry in nature. Her mantra envelopes everything Tatanga (Buffalo) as it connects her to  ancestral memories, the land and is the manifestational glue that keeps her world together. 

Honouring Sacred Spaces in Urban Settings 

Joely will share how her involvement in the Buffalo People Arts Institute (BPAI) inspired the  creation of ceremonies focused on matriarchs and the summer and winter solstices. BPAI  recognizes there are sacred spaces in rural and urban areas. We need to honour those sacred spaces  in the places where we have made our homes and where our families reside. The question that  guides her is how will we prepare for the next 1000 years with the knowledge of today?

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