20 years of spirited action for justice Speaker Bios


Alma Brooks

Alma Brooks

Read Bio

Alma Brooks is a Maliseet grandmother from the St. Mary’s First Nation in New Brunswick.  She was an elected Band Councillor for one term before moving on to focus on the Maliseet Grand Council and the Wabanaki Confederacy, both traditional decision-making structures. Alma has developed and facilitated many programs for her community over the years, and was acting President of the New Brunswick Native Council for 18 years.  She is currently teaching a two year University Course in the Maliseet Language.    Alma is a lifelong learner in the area of the environment – from her spiritual roots to the action on the front lines of many protests, demonstrations and campaigns.   Presently, she is also working to raise funds for the Wabanaki Environmental Defense Fund.    The Wabanaki Confederacy includes members of the Maliseet, Mi’kmaq, Passamaquoddy and Penobscot peoples in Atlantic Canada.  The Confederacy has invited KAIROS to accompany them in their efforts to re-establish traditional forms of Indigenous governance in their territory, while actively working with local, national, and international partners to prevent ongoing and immediate threats to local lands and waters. Alma participated in the Honouring Indigenous women’s wisdom delegation to the UN Permanent Forum on Indigenous Issues (UNPFII) in May 2014 and the KAIROS Gendered Impact: Indigenous women and resource extraction symposium and GEMM (Global Energy Minerals and Markets ) 2015 Dialogue  in Vancouver in October 2015.
Anna Bigland-Pritchard

Anna Bigland-Pritchard

Read Bio

Anna Bigland-Pritchard is a soprano, songwriter, music educator, and expressive arts therapy student living in Lekwungen territory (Victoria BC). Igniting her voice, songwriting, and community leadership with a contagious and inspiring passion for social justice, climate justice and art making for all, Anna is an enthusiastic interdisciplinary artist. Deeply resourced by studies in expressive arts therapy, as well as extensive classical music and music ministry training, Anna uses a mindful practice of art-making to help others to feel supported through the joys and challenges of life. Anna believes art must be activism, true self-care and community-care are an act of bold resistance, and that the expressive arts are a tool for both self-care and social change. 

 

Barbara Dumont-Hill

Barbara Dumont-Hill

Read Bio

Barbara Dumont-Hill is Algonquin Anishinabeg from the Kitigan Zibi community in Quebec. She has served Kairos in a variety of ways for almost 10 years.  Barbara has facilitated well over 100 Blanket Exercises to many groups and organizations from high schools to federal government departments and the RCMP.  She has served for several years as a spirit keeper for Carleton University, Algonquin College, the Public Service Alliance of Canada and the Children’s Aid Society of Ottawa among many other organizationsShe travelled across Canada as an advisor with the Canadian Department of Justice to witness the Missing and Murdered Indigenous Women and Girls National Inquiry.  Barbara’s work has inspired her path to honour and empower Indigenous women and youth. 

 

 

 

 

Elyse Brazel

Elyse Brazel

Read Bio

Elyse Brazel, Network Coordinator, Faith and the Common Good

Emily Duggan

Emily Duggan

Read Bio

Emily Duggan is a minister in the United Church of Canada, serving a two-point charge in Catalone and Louisbourg, Cape Breton. She first became involved with KAIROS in 2010 as a member of the Movement Building Circle where she served as a representative of the UCC for 5 years. In 2019, she participated in the KAIROS Atlantic Gathering and is honoured to take part in celebrating 20 years of KAIROS!

Emily Dwyer

Emily Dwyer

Read Bio

Emily Dwyer has coordinated the Canadian Network on Corporate Accountability (CNCA) since 2012. The CNCA is a coalition of 38 environmental and human rights NGOs, faith-based organizations, labour unions and solidarity groups that advocate for Canadian law and policy reform to require companies to prevent human rights and environmental damage throughout their global operations and to ensure that those harmed by Canadian business operations can access remedy in Canada. KAIROS has been an active member of the CNCA since it was formed in 2005, and until 2018 sat on the CNCA Steering Committee.

Georgine Kengne Djeutane

Georgine Kengne Djeutane

Read Bio

Ms Georgine Kengne Djeutane is an Economist, she received a Master of Philosophy (Mphil) in Economics Sciences. She is trained on Project management, Monitoring and Evaluation, Conflict Resolution, Gender and Human Rights, Lobby and Advocacy. Having worked as a Research Coordinator with a Peace Organisation in Cameroon where she launched the Jubilee 2 000 Campaign in 1 999, she relocated in Kenya to serve as the Africa Regional Secretary for the World student Christian Federation (WSCF). She Coordinated the work of 24 Student Christian Movements in Africa advocating and initiating actions for justice and peace around the world. She was also co-opted to serve in advisory board of the Nairobi Peace Initiative Africa (NPI-A), member of the Justice, Peace and Creation team of the World Council of Churches, member of the Advisory board of the Ecumenical Advocacy Alliance (EAA), Chairperson of the World Student Christian Federation and the Global Christian Committee Member. Now working as programme coordinator with the African Gender and Extractive Alliance (WoMin) based in Johannesburg, South Africa.  

My personal goal is to be Jesus Christ disciple and contribute to the best of my ability to strive for justice and peace in the world; to improve the quality of life of the most vulnerable. 

gkisedtanamoogk

gkisedtanamoogk

Read Bio

gkisedtanamoogk, is Wampanoag from the Native Community of Mashpee located on cape cod south of boston, massachusetts; he is family member of Nkeketonseonqikom, the Longhouse of the Otter, and T8nuppatonseonqikom, the Longhouse of the Turtle; married to Miigam’agan, together with three Children and four Grandchildren. He was one of five Commissioners on the Maine Wabanaki State Child Welfare Truth and Reconciliation Commission and taught for 10 years at the University of Maine, Orono Campus as an Adjunct Instructor and lecturer in the Native American Studies and the Peace and Reconciliation Programs. Since 2016 gkisedtanamoogk joined the faculty of the 6-day Upstander Academy, a summer teacher professional learning program highlighting Indigenous Peoples’ challenge to false narratives of american education.

His applied occupation includes Cultural and Legal Theory with particular interests pertaining to the social, political, legal, scientific, and spiritual Life of Wampanoag and Wabanaki Nations; he also engages in many activities of advocacy and interest to Indigenous Peoples including, Indigenous Law, Science, Linguistics, and Education.

Presently, gkisedtanamoogk is a member of the Kairos Indigenous Rights Circle, Kairos initiated climate change program, For the Love of Creation, and a faculty member of the Upstanders Academy

gkisedtanamoogk resides with his Family at Esgenoôpetitj on the Burnt Church Reserve, occupied by new brunswick canada.

Helen Knott

Helen Knott

Read Bio

Helen Knott is an activist, poet, social worker, mother and more. She is Dane Zaa and Nehiyawak from the Prophet River First Nation in British Columbia.

A published author – In My Own Moccasins: A Memoir of Resilience – and gifted communicator, Helen’s involvement with KAIROS began as a youth in 2012. Her next book – Becoming a Matriarch- will be released in the Spring of 2023.

Yvonne Yanez

Ivonne Yanez

Read Bio

Ivonne Yanez is a founding member and current president of Acción Ecológica, one of the most well-known and respected climate justice organizations in Latin America and also Oilwatch, an oil activities resistance network. Ivonne works on energy, climate change and, more recently, environmental services. She has been an active promoter of the Keep the Oil in the Soil campaign for many years, with Yasuni as the emblematic case.

Acción Ecologica has been an ecumenical partner since before the creation of KAIROS, dating back to the Jubilee Campaign where Acción Ecologica led the call for recognition of ecological debt of the North to the South.

Janet Gray

Janet Gray

Read Bio

Janet Gray has been involved in ecumenical justice work since the 10 Days for Global Justice times and finds a home in the justice and relationship building important focus of KAIROS and what her faith means to her.  

Janet lives on Lekwungen territory of the sci’anew nation (also known as Victoria, BC) and is passionate about doing what she can to leave this beautiful diverse Mother Earth in better shape for healthy future generations of all beings. She is grateful for the grounding of her faith and sees all that we do as connected. Janet loves growing food and flowers and hugging as many trees as she can! Especially ancient 1000+ year old ones.  

 

Jessica Steele

Jessica Steele

Read Bio

Jessica Steele (she/her/elle) is a climate justice activist, ocean conservationist and youth engager, striving to tread lightly and with intention on the unceded, traditional and ancestral lands of the Coast Salish Peoples. After completing a BSc in Biology (Specialization in Marine Biology) from UVic in 2015, Jessica did an International Youth Internship Placement (IYIP) with the Institut Africain de Gestion Urbaine in Dakar, Senegal where she worked on waste management projects. In 2017, Jessica joined Ocean Wise Conservation Association’s national ocean education initiatives working as an Educator on the Mobile Programs team and as a Program Coordinator for Ocean Bridge/Portail Ocean. She is currently a Sr. Referrals Analyst with səlilwətaɬ (Tsleil-Waututh Nation) where she upholds Indigenous Rights through Consultation on environmental assessment projects. Jessica sits on the Primate World Relief and Development Fund (PWRDF)’s National Youth Council and has been the PWRDF representative to the KAIROS Ecological Justice Circle since 2018. In December 2018, she attended the UNFCCC’s COP24 on behalf of KAIROS. She is part of the British Columbia Council for International Cooperation (BCCIC)’s delegation to the 2022 UN Oceans Conference and a co-author of the delegation’s policy paper “Achieving Equity in Canada’s Blue Economy”. Jessica loves jumping in the ocean, riding her bike, summer picnics and backpacking backcountry trails.

Jesson Reyes

Jesson Reyes

Read Bio

Jesson Reyes currently serves as the Managing Director of the Migrants Resource Center Canada. Born and raised in Saudi Arabia, Jesson started organizing in 2011 alongside fellow migrant youths serving as one of the founding members of Anakbayan Toronto, a youth and student organization fighting for genuine freedom and democracy in the Philippines.

Prior to assuming his role at MRCC, Jesson also served as a regional coordinator for Migrante Canada, assisting in organising and coordinating various campaigns for Filipino migrants and their families across Canada. He worked briefly in the settlement field before helping found MRCC.

Today, Jesson manages the day-to-day operations of MRCC from developing and overseeing the institution’s strategic plan to supervision of research and campaigns component of the institution.

Through Anakbayan, Migrante and now MRCC, Jesson has had the chance to collaborate on various campaigns related to migrants and indigenous people’s struggle with KAIROS Canada.

Over the past years, Jesson together with fellow national democratic organizers helped in hosting several human rights leader activists from the Philippines to the Parliament highlighting various issues of Canadian mining in the Philippines. He has also sat in various panels alongside KAIROS migrant justice coordinators on amplifying the voices of migrant workers in Canada and creating public awareness on their plight. Presently, together with the MRCC Care project team, they serve as one of the partners in the Empowering Temporary Foreign Workers During Covid-19 Project.

Joe Gunn

Joe Gunn

Read Bio

Joe Gunn grew up in Toronto, where he received his BA in Political Science, followed by an MA from the University of Regina. For seven years, Joe worked in Central American refugee camps and then development projects in Nicaragua. Returning to Canada, he served for a decade as chair of the Inter-Church Committee on Human Rights in Latin America. For over ten years, he worked with the Canadian Conference of Catholic Bishops, where he served as chair of the Aboriginal Rights Coalition and liaison to several other ecumenical justice coalitions that preceded the formation of KAIROS. After participation in the Canadian Ecumenical Jubilee Initiative, Joe served as the founding vice-chair of KAIROS. In February 2019, he became director of the Centre Oblat – A Voice for Justice. The Centre Oblat was a new ministry of three provinces of the Oblates of Mary Immaculate, to focus on poverty, ecological justice, responsible extractive practices overseas, and reconciliation with Indigenous peoples. In this capacity, he remains active in For The Love of Creation, and other interfaith initiatives where KAIROS’ work continues to shine through. 

Juan Facundo

Juan Facundo

Read Bio

Juan Facundo, Research Assistant, Mount Allison University

Kaitlyn Duthie-Kannikkatt

Kaitlyn Duthie-Kannikkatt

Read Bio

Kaitlyn Duthie-Kannikkatt served close to 10 years on KAIROS’ Ecological Justice circle as a youth member at large. She is excited to rekindle her KAIROS connections through this event! Kaitlyn recently moved from Treaty 1 territory (Winnipeg MB) to Mi’kma’ki (Nova Scotia) where she is working as the Atlantic Regional Coordinator at the Bauta Family Initiative for Canadian Seed Security. She is also completing her doctorate at the University of Manitoba, working with small-scale farmers in Bolivia committed to cultivating seed sovereignty despite economic and environmental pressures.

Lee Cormie

Lee Cormie

Read Bio

Lee Cormie has been a researcher, teacher, writer, and sometime activist concerning liberation theologies, social justice movements, and church social teachings since the 1970s, connecting with grass-roots activism: in the US with Theology in the Americas (1975-1988); in Canada with the Ecumenical Interchurch Coalitions (1970s – 2001), the Canadian Ecumenical Jubilee Initiative (1997-2001), and Kairos; and internationally with the Ecumenical Association of Third World Theologians, Amerindia, and the World Forum on Theology and Liberation (since 2005). He is associate professor emeritus of the Faculty of Theology, University of St. Michael’s College and the Toronto School of Theology.  

 

Rev. Mary Fontaine

Rev. Mary Fontaine

Read Bio

Rev. Mary Fontaine is Cree from Mistawasis and is ordained in the Presbyterian Church in Canada. She is the founder and executive director of Hummingbird Ministries, an Indigenous-led healing and reconciling ministry of the Presbytery of Westminster in British Columbia. Hummingbird Ministries is one of nine Indigenous ministries of the PCC (Presbyterian Church in Canada).

Naty Atz Sunuc

Natalia Atz Sunuc

Read Bio

Natalia Atz Sunuc is a Maya Kaqchikel woman and a victim and survivor of the Guatemalan armed conflict. She has been a part of social movements in Guatemala for over thirty years. She holds a Bachelor of Law and Social Sciences. Her areas of expertise are human rights, Indigenous peoples’ rights, food sovereignty, land and environmental defense, economic justice, climate justice, and free trade agreements. She is committed to social and gender justice. Natalia was an Honorary Witness for the Truth and Reconciliation Commission of Canada.

Nicholas Jesson

Nicholas Jesson

Read Bio

Nicholas Jesson has been the ecumenical and interfaith officer for the Roman Catholic Archdiocese of Regina since 2017 after a similar role in the Diocese of Saskatoon for many years. Originally from Winnipeg, Nick studied Philosophy and Religious Studies at the University of Manitoba and theology at St. Michael’s College, University of Toronto. He taught Religious Studies at St. Thomas More College, University of Saskatchewan for 8 years. Nick is a former executive director of the Prairie Centre for Ecumenism and has been a member of the Roman Catholic-United Church of Canada Dialogue since 2012. Nick has been editor of the website Ecumenism in Canada since 1995 (ecumenism.net). In 2010 he was asked by the Vatican and the Anglican Communion to develop the official digital archive of Anglican-Roman Catholic Dialogue (iarccum.org). More recently he has developed the Margaret O’Gara Collection of Canadian Ecumenical Dialogues for the Canadian Council of Churches (ecumenical-dialogue.ca). Nick is on the leadership team of KAIROS Regina. 
 

Paul Gers

Rev. Paul Gehrs

Read Bio

Rev. Paul Gehrs (he/him) lives on Treaty One Territory in Winnipeg, MB. He is married to Melanie Whyte and they have two adult children. Paul serves as Assistant to the Bishop, Justice and Ecumenical and Interfaith Relations for the Evangelical Lutheran Church in Canada (ELCIC). He is a member of the KAIROS Steering Committee and currently serves as Vice-chair. In 2014, Paul was honoured to represent KAIROS Canada at a Kairos Palestine Conference.  
 

Sister Priscilla Solomon

Sister Priscilla Solomon

Read Bio

Priscilla Solomon is an Ojibway member of the Anishinabek Nation and a Sister of St. Joseph of Sault Ste. Marie. She has worked in the Faith and Justice office of her Congregation since 1998. The current focus of her work is reconciliation between people of Settler origins and Indigenous people.

She has been connected in various ways with Kairos since it began. When a local North Bay Kairos group formed, she was chair of that group. With the local team, she coordinated a Great Lakes –St. Laurence Regional meeting in North Bay.

She was the Canadian Religious Conference Ontario Justice, Peace and Integrity of Creation (CRC-JPIC, ON) representative in the Kairos Indigenous Rights Circle (KIRC) from 2011 until 2018. She was a Kairos advisory team that focused on the relationship between Kairos and the Indigenous members of KIRC. 

She was involved in the Banner Train event in 2011. She worked with the Kairos Blanket Exercise and was on a facilitator training team in North Bay and Sudbury. She frequently facilitated the Blanket Exercise.

ray jones

Ray Jones

Read Bio

Elder’s Opening – Ray Jones, Gitsegukla, British Columbia, long-time member of KAIROS Indigenous Rights Circle and Steering Committee.

Stacey Gomez

Stacey Gomez

Read Bio

Stacey Gomez is migrant justice organizer with No One Is Illegal – Halifax/Kjipuktuk.

Sue Wilson

Sue Wilson

Read Bio

Sue Wilson is the Executive Director of the Office for Systemic Justice for the Federation of Sister of St. Joseph of Canada.  Sue has been engaged with KARIOS since its early days, first on the Animation, Communication and Education committee, then as a Board member, and currently as a member of the Ecological Justice Circle.   

Zoughbi Zoughbi

Zoughbi Zoughbi

Read Bio

Zoughbi Zoughbi is the founder and director of the Palestinian Conflict Transformation Centre in Palestine.

Known by the name “Wi’am,” the Arabic word meaning “cordial relationships,” the center offers mediation, training, and psycho -social counseling to help resolve community disputes and alleviate the suffering of the people. It includes a trauma-coping program for children, leadership training for women, ending community violence, trying to eliminate violence against women and children, and nonviolence education programs.

“The Israeli occupation has created an alarming deterioration of political, economic, environmental, psychological status and social structures,” said Zoughbi, who founded the center in 1994. “But even in the midst of this deterioration, I experience great joy in responding to people’s needs and enhancing their hopes.”

Wi’am was honored with the 2010 Peacebuilding Award in the World Vision International Peace Prize competition for “successfully integrating traditional Palestinian mediation customs with innovative academic models of conflict analysis to address the very difficult circumstances of Palestinians living in the occupied West Bank. Zoughbi was also granted international Peacemaker Award 1993 from Washington physicians for Social Responsibility.

Zoughbi Zoughbi is a world renowned speaker, trainer, counselor, activist and writer. He has written and edited extensive articles, booklets and books on the interdisciplinary topics of justice, peace and reconciliation and also on oral history and didactic stories.

Zoughbi, has been involved with KAIROS since its inception where he has been always feeling uplifted by their spirited action and prophetic voice for Justice


20 years of spirited action for justice