Our annual National Speakers Bureau’s Engage Speaker Talks (NSBest) is right around the corner. This year for the first time, we’re hosting events at three locations across Canada: Calgary (Sept. 9), Vancouver (Sept. 13), and Toronto (Sept. 27).
Our 2016 theme is ‘Canada 150’, a topical theme for the upcoming year with event professionals looking for thought-leadership on their upcoming events. We will be focusing on the state of our nation at this important milestone. What makes Canada so unique? What are the strong points? The places in need of improvement? What’s your outlook for what our Canadian future has in store?
Today, our featured speaker is Broadcaster, Advocate & Pop Culture Philosopher Jesse Wente. It’s a busy month for Jesse, who serves as Director of Film Programmes at TIFF Bell Lightbox. The organization’s annual Toronto International Film Festival runs September 8-18 and features a total of 397 films from 83 countries. Shortly after the festival wraps, he’ll take the stage at our NSBest Toronto event.
In this blog, Jesse shares his thoughts on Canada 150:
What are you like on-stage during your presentations?
I’m pretty animated during my presentations. I’m certainly passionate about what I’m talking about and I want to get that passion across to my audience. I tend to move around a lot on stage.
I’ve been broadcasting for a very long time, so I’m used to public speaking and I’m really comfortable on stage. For me, it’s a natural space.
What does Canada mean to you?
I love Canada. I’m also very conscious of Canada’s duality and it’s history. I realize that this country is a construct overtop of many nations that have been here for centuries before that.
I do love Canada and all that it represents. I hope and I think that we’ll be able to do even better as we move forward.
What a changing Canada mean to you?
A change that lots of people can help and contribute to would be to move the discussions around indigenous representations, around reconciliation, beyond the discussion of mascots and war bonnets at music festivals and into what really matters. About getting clean water into the communities. About restoring language. About restoring the land. About restoring sovereignty to the nations that have been here beforehand. I think that’s the big change. The really powerful thing is, it only takes individuals making little changes to help us get there.