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The Festival of What Works Closing Ceremony

Date & Time
Sunday, November 7, 2021, 4:00 PM - 4:45 PM

After a week of inspiring, galvanizing and thought-provoking conversations, join us to close out this year’s Festival of What Works and reflect on what we shared—and what the future holds. Hear from Annita McPhee about what connected us all during the Festival—water—before listening to an original composition from musician Murray Porter about just that. Then ground yourself, and take a moment, with a connecting, closing invitation from Rhys-Thorvald Hansen. 

Session Type
Session Tags
Relationship with Land, Cultural Transformation, Ceremony
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Olivia Leigh Nowak is a storyteller, artist, and activist. Through her work she aims to connect people, build community, and nurturing creative collaborations that uplift diverse voices working to address some of society’s most critical issues. Recently, her work has included directing and producing documentary content focused on building awareness and catalyzing transformation around racial and gender inequality, climate and environmental change, and building sustainable local communities. Two of these projects, Black Rock and Pandemic Elementary have been featured as CBC short docs. In addition to film, she has spent time working, and learning in Indigenous communities in South America and BC. These experiences and relationships have shaped her values, priorities, and vision for how we can live well in place, and work collectively to heal Mother Earth.
Olivia Leigh Nowak
Kel Moody (they/them) is a community steward and placemaker. They have a passion for convening communities and leading teams to create meaningful experiences through events and programs. They have worked in and around the B Corp community, using business as a force for good, since 2016 as a woodworker, project manager, and consultant. They serve on both the B Local PDX board and Build Local Alliance board based out of Portland, OR. Kel deeply believes that developing a strong sense of place is one of the most meaningful pathways to purpose. This has led them to dive into working with Salmon Nation as the Director of the Festival of What Works. They currently live in the traditional territory of the Cowlitz and Chinook tribes or what is now called Vancouver, WA, with their wife and toddler, taking moments to retreat to the forest as often as possible.
Kel Moody
Rhys-Thorvald Hansen is a non-binary artist and facilitator living and working on the northwest coast of the Salish Sea.They are immersed within the landscapes of local food, just land transition, community care, art for cultural transformation, and deep relationships with place. You can find more from them at terracognita.studio
Rhys-Thorvald Hansen
Annita McPhee is from the Tahltan Tlingit Nations located in Northwestern British Columbia. She served three terms as President of the Tahltan Central Council, and is recipient of numerous awards for her vision and leadership, including The Leadership Award from Ecotrust for her work in saving the Sacred Headwaters, and Indigenous National Native Role Model. She serves as Advisor and Director on several national and provincial boards including the Legal Services Society, Vancouver Board of Trade’s Aboriginal Affairs Committee, BC Hydro's Strategic Aboriginal Engagement Committee and the Minister of Aboriginal Relations Advisory Council on Aboriginal Women among others. She founded Annita Mcphee Strategies in 2015, quickly establishing the organization as a leading conference provider and community facilitator for First Nations, Indigenous women, industry and governmental bodies.She holds a Bachelor of Law and a Bachelor of Social Work, and recently earned her diploma in International Human Rights and Advocacy with the United Nations Indigenous Women's Global Leadership School in New York.
Annita McPhee
Blues Man Murray Porter’s music career has taken him all over the world for the last 40 years. He’s a proud Mohawk man from Six Nations of the Grand River Territory in southern Ontario, who now lives on Squamish Nation unceded territory in North Vancouver, British Columbia.

Murray may have a blues soul to the core, but he also grew up on rock and roll, R & B and country music. Porter’s first CD since his 2012 JUNO Award for ‘Aboriginal Album of the Year’ is titled, “STAND UP!” and reflects these early musical influences. He strongly feels that this album is some of his best music to date. This album was nominated at the 2019 Native American Music Awards for ‘Best Blues Recording’ and ‘Best Male Artist of the Year’. One song, `Love Will Find A Way’, words by Elaine Bomberry and music by Murray Porter, charted at Number One, on the Indigenous Music Countdown, the week of July 18, 2020.

During this COVID-19 era, which has rocked all of our worlds, and cancelled the live music scene throughout the world, there have been ‘virtual concert series’, that Murray has performed at including: `#CanadaPerforms with the National Arts Centre’,`Tkaronto Music Fest’, ‘Assembly of First Nations Water Summit (twice)’, `Live at Mikey’s Place’, ‘Indigenous Music Awards Performance Series’, ‘Rez Bluez 25th Anniversary’, presented by the Toronto Blues Society & Elaine Bomberry. Plus, he’s performed for a number of Indigenous organizations virtually as well for Elders Gatherings and Friendship Centres.

Whether he is playing an intimate venue for local blues fans, as a solo, duo, trio or with a four-piece band, or on a festival stage to thousands of music aficionados, Porter’s love of performing comes across clear and strong. He has been compared to Dr. John, Joe Cocker and even Elton John! Robbie Robertson has called Porter “a master bluesman.” He captivates audiences wherever he performs and makes new fans…and they never leave his show disappointed.

Links to Murray Porter’s Music:
Rez Bluez 25th Anniversary, presented by the Toronto Blues Society & Elaine Bomberry, Sept. 25, 2020
Murray Porter