Hallman Lecture and Panel: COVID-19 and Indigenous communities

Wednesday, May 19, 2021 1:00 pm - 4:15 pm EDT (GMT -04:00)

The COVID-19 pandemic has had devastating and unique impacts on First Nation communities, particularly with the loss of respected Elders and Knowledge Holders. These impacts have been experienced differently across jurisdictions within Canada and bring to light critical opportunities for learning and advocating for a wide diversity of First Nation families and communities.

This Hallman lecture will include a discussion of the COVID-19 response from the perspective of the National Chief of the Assembly of First Nations, Perry Bellegarde, and a panel discussion including other national as well as regional successes and challenges.


Perry Bellegarde

National Chief of the Assembly of First Nations

Perry Bellegarde was elected National Chief of the Assembly of First Nations in 2014 and re-elected in 2018. He holds a wealth of leadership experience, having spent the past three decades putting into practice his strong beliefs in the laws and traditions instilled in him by the many Chiefs and Elders he has known over the years. At the community, national and international levels, Chief Bellegarde is recognized for sound fiscal management and skillfully navigating highly complex policy, political and legal matters to achieve meaningful change for First Nations peoples, and Canada, while strengthening relationships along the way.

Chief Bellegarde has been named the Stapleford Lecturer at the University of Regina, and has been awarded the Confederation Medal, the Saskatchewan Medal and the Queen’s Jubilee Medal on two separate occasions. In 2018, he was recognized with the Saskatchewan Order of Merit and in 2019 with an Honorary Doctorate of Laws from Queen’s University.

Chief Bellegarde remains committed to leading and building consensus to resolve issues that benefit First Nations and inspire unity. Throughout his life, working within a variety of political processes, he remains grateful for the strength and vision he has gained from the Elders. He vows to always place great importance on respecting their teachings.  Their guidance has made him a man of foresight and a leader for generations.  

Online registration for this lecture is now closed. To inquire about late registration, contact Carol West-Seebeck.

This is an online event. If you have already registered for this event, your link to attend was emailed to you from Carol West-Seebeck cwestsee@uwaterloo.ca with the subject line: “Youtube link to May 19 Hallman Lecture and Panel”

If you have not received the “Youtube link to May 19 Hallman Lecture and Panel” email or if you have any questions about the event, please contact Carol West-Seebeck.


Time Session
1:00 - 1:15 p.m.

Introduction and welcome

Speaker: Lili Liu, Dean, Faculty of Health, University of Waterloo

1:15 - 1:30 p.m.

Elder opening

Speaker: Elder Myeengun Henry, Chippewas of the Thames First Nation

1:30 - 2:00 p.m.

Keynote: Perspectives on COVID-19 and impacts on First Nations communities

Moderator: Jean Becker, Senior Director, Indigenous Initiatives (Interim AVP, Human Rights, Equity and Inclusion), University of Waterloo

Presenter: Perry BellegardeNational Chief of the Assembly of First Nations

2:00 - 2:30 p.m.

Question and answer period

Facilitator: Robin Stadelbauer, Indigenous Initiatives Coordinator, University of Waterloo

Please submit questions for the National Chief in advance on your registration.

2:30 - 2:45 p.m.


2:45 - 4:00 p.m.

Regional panel

Moderator: Hannah Tait Neufeld, Canada Research Chair in Indigenous Health, Wellness and Food Environments, University of Waterloo


Chantelle Richmond, Canada Research Chair in Indigenous Health and Environment, Western University
Impacts of COVID-19 on Indigenous Peoples

Lori Campbell, Former Director, Shatitsirótha’ Waterloo Indigenous Student Centre; Associate Vice President of Indigenous Engagement, University of Regina for Indigenous Engagement
Challenges within urban Indigenous and student communities

Lori Davis Hill, Director, Six Nations Health Services
Successes within Six Nations of the Grand River

Question and answer period to follow. Please submit questions for speakers in advance on your registration.

4:00 p.m.

Elder closing

Speaker: Elder Myeengun Henry, Chippewas of the Thames First Nation


Elder Myeengun Henry

Chippewas of the Thames First Nation

Elder Myeengun Henry is the Manager/counsellor of Be-Dah-Bin Gamik, indigenous services at Conestoga College. He is a former Chief of the Chippewas of the Thames First Nation. He is the writer of an Indigenous studies course called “A First Nations Experience” and he practices Indigenous ceremonies and language. He is an Indigenous advisor at the Law Society of Ontario, serves as an elder/teacher at McMaster University and Mohawk College and is an Indigenous advisor to the Ontario Provincial Police and at the Waterloo Crime Prevention Council. He works hard to address issues in the current climate crisis, organizes rallys and meetings and is the host of the NISH-VIBES radio show on CJIQ-FM. He is building a sustainable off-the-grid house and a number of tiny houses on his reserve.

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Chantelle Richmond

Canada Research Chair in Indigenous Health and Environment
Department of Geography
Western University

Chantelle Richmond (Biigtigong Anishinabe) is an Associate Professor in the Department of Geography at Western University in London, Ontario (Canada), where she holds the Canada Research Chair in Indigenous Health and the Environment. Chantelle is Leader of Ontario’s Indigenous Mentorship Network. Her research is based on a community-centred model of research that explores the intersection of Indigenous people’s health and knowledge systems within the context of global environmental change. 

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Lori Campbell

Associate Vice President, Indigenous Engagement
Office of Indigenization
University of Regina

Lori Campbell is 2-Spirit nēhiyaw āpihtākosisān and is a member of Montreal Lake First Nation, Treaty 6 territory. She is an intergenerational survivor of the Indian Residential School system and a child from the Sixties Scoop generation. Lori has made it her career advocating for social justice and working towards a more equitable society for all. With over 13 years of progressive leadership in student services, academics, research and administration, Lori is an experienced leader in education with a proven track record particularly in advancing processes of Indigenization, reconciliation, and decolonization. Lori holds two undergraduate degrees (Indigenous Studies and Psychology), a master’s degree in Adult Education and is working towards a PhD in Social Justice Education.

Lori Davis Hill

Director of Health Services
Six Nations Health Services

Lori Davis Hill, Oneida Nation, Wolf Clan is a Haudenosaunee woman, wife, mother and leader at Six Nations of the Grand River. She is currently the Director of Health Services for the community, supporting a large department as they respond to the current pandemic.  Lori believes that it is important to walk the talk and paddle the paddle, in life and in leadership. She will be embarking on a new journey to begin a doctorate this summer.

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Moderators and facilitators

Jean Becker

Senior Director, Indigenous Initiatives
Associate Vice President, Human Rights, Equity and Inclusion
University of Waterloo

Jean Becker is Inuk and a member of the Nunatsiavut Territory of Labrador. She is the Senior Director Indigenous Initiatives at the University of Waterloo. Jean is passionate about her work to decolonize the academy.

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Hannah Tait Neufeld

Canada Research Chair in Indigenous Health, Wellness and Food Environments
School of Public Health and Health Systems
University of Waterloo

Hannah Tait Neufeld joined the School of Public Health and Health Systems at University of Waterloo in September 2019. Her research focus for the past 20 years has been on incorporating community-based research methodologies to continually engage and support project partners, community members, and trainees to investigate food as a medium to bridge environments and share land-based knowledge.

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Robin Stadelbauer

Indigenous Initiatives Coordinator
University of Waterloo

Robin Stadelbauer is Anishinaabe from Neyaashiinigmiing (Chippewas of Nawash Unceded First Nation) located on Georgian Bay. Robin is a proud Waterloo alumna and joined the University of Waterloo as a staff member in 2008. Robin worked in Advancement until her appointment as Indigenous Initiatives Coordinator in October 2020. Robin is dedicated to advancing Indigenous initiatives for the university community.

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This event is hosted by the University of Waterloo School of Public Health and Health Systems with additional support from the Hallman Foundation.