CALGARY, Alberta, April 20, 2023 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- Forward Summit, Canada’s premier event for advancing economic reconciliation, announced today it will return this year with two exciting events: Forward Summit WEST, May 17-18 in Calgary, AB and Forward Summit EAST, Sept. 27-18 in Orillia, ON.
Each of the two-day events will bring Corporate Canada and Indigenous communities together to discuss how to work in partnership towards a common goal: building a strong, prosperous and equal Canada for all. Upholding the Truth and Reconciliation Commission’s Call to Action #92, the conference guides significant conversations on building respectful relationships with Indigenous communities that result in collaborative, competitive and successful business development projects that progress economic reconciliation for Indigenous peoples.
“Forward Summit is a truly immersive experience that fosters the conversations necessary to address and correct the growing economic gap between Indigenous and non-Indigenous Canadians,” said Miki Reeder, President and Founder, Forward Summit. “I am certain the lived experiences, insights and unique outlooks presented by our 2023 speakers will inspire attendees to take tangible steps towards economic reconciliation and, ultimately, help foster a stronger Canadian economy and workforce.”
In 2022, Forward Summit welcomed over 1,000 participants, 50 exhibitors, 170 Indigenous communities and 130 speakers from across Canada. This year’s event promises to be just as exciting, with engaging speakers including Keith Henry, CEO, Indigenous Tourism Association of Canada; Bobbie Racette, CEO, Virtual Gurus; Suzanne Carriere, Citizenship Judge, Government of Canada; Stephen Buffalo, President and CEO, Indian Resource Council and many more. The conference agenda, speakers and topics are shaped by the Indigenous-led Leadership Council, which is comprised of established and emerging Indigenous leaders from across Canada.
Forward Summit also recognizes the crucial need for Indigenous youth voices to be included on the path to reconciliation. In partnership with Actua, Canada’s leading youth STEM outreach organization, 25 Indigenous youth from the Calgary Board of Education have been invited to participate at Forward Summit WEST. Of these students, four have been selected to speak on the conference’s opening panel and share their expectations when it comes to the level of industry and government support necessary in securing their future.
“STEM education is key to our future economy, so it’s critical to economic reconciliation that we increase Indigenous participation in STEM education and conversation around our future workforce,” said Jennifer Flanagan, President and CEO, Actua. “Through partnerships that bring together youth, industry and educators, we can progress together in a way that is both meaningful and impactful."
"The Calgary Board of Education is proud to support four Indigenous youth from various high schools throughout the city to participate in the Forward Summit Youth Panel Discussion on the topic of economic reconciliation,” said Shane Spriggs, Indigenous Education Specialist, Calgary Board of Education. “We are also excited to have 21 additional Indigenous high school students participate in roundtable discussions with industry leaders, communities, and organizations where they will amplify their voices to incite meaningful dialogue."
Tickets for Forward Summit WEST, May 17-18 and Forward Summit EAST, Sept. 27-28 are on sale now. Canadian Council for Aboriginal Business (CCAB) members receive 10 per cent off their registration. For more details on conference programming, speakers and tickets, please visit www.forwardsummit.ca.
About Forward Summit Since its inception in 2019, Forward Summit’s goal has been to provide organizations, Indigenous communities and business professionals with the tools and resources necessary to build successful, collaborative, and competitive business development projects that progress economic reconciliation for Indigenous peoples. Unlike many other conferences, Forward Summit’s intended outcome is to create a community focused on action. The event brings together a diverse audience of Indigenous and non-Indigenous organizations, Senior Executives, and Indigenous Community Leaders for over 20 hours of important discussions pertaining to economic reconciliation. For more information, please visit www.forwardsummit.ca.
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