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Maestro Fresh Wes Williams

Canadian Hip-Hop Pioneer, Co-Star on Mr.D

“Maestro” Fresh Wes Williams is one of Canada’s most successful and influential Hip-Hop artists, and premier multi-media personalities. His signature song “Let Your Backbone Slide” was the first Canadian Hip Hop single to ever go gold. Wes stars as a high school teacher on CBCs hit show, “Mr. D.” Wes is also the author of the critically-acclaimed book, “Stick to Your Vision”.

Toronto, Ontario, Canada

Presentations

Stick to Your Vision
As someone who has experienced the highs and lows that come with being a performer, Wes “Maestro” Williams has had to overcome many challenges in his life. These are also the same challenges that we all face on the way to where we want to be, and Wes’s practical and empowering strategies will help you get there. Sometimes these obstacles come from within, whether it’s a fear of failure or low self-esteem. Sometimes they come from your circumstances; perhaps there are people around you who are keeping you down or “in your place,” even if they don’t mean to. In Stick to Your Vision, Wes shows you how to define your vision, how to achieve it, and what to do once you’re there. He offers useful tips and advice, as well as inspirational stories and quotes, and exercises that will keep you moving towards your own vision.

Awards

2011
Stylus Award Hall of Fame Inductee

2010
Black Business and Professional's Association Award of Merit

2006
Scarborough Walk of Fame

2003
Reel World Film Festival 'Trailblazer Award'

2006 & 2002
Who's Who in Black Canada

2002
UMAC Special Achievement Award

2002 & 1998
UMAC Special Achievement Award

  • After hearing Wes present, the passion that he exuded while he spoke, really set my mind to continue to support my student's learning and help guide them in promoting positive behaviours and goals that will continue long into their adult lives. Wes' ability to captivate the audience was effortless and he spoke with such confidence that anyone would feel motivated to continue through any challenges that may be bestowed upon them. I truly feel that Wes has found yet another niche in life and with no question he should continue, on his path of success.

    - Teacher, Clark Boulevard, P.S. Brampton
  • Let us not forget how our everyday actions, attitudes, and words impact students....Wes Williams helped us turn that magic switch back on! Inspiring, and most importantly highly engaging. The students were focused, attentive and very appreciative of his words of inspiration. Wes allowed our young people an opportunity to believe in themselves, their abilities and set goals for success in the future. His brilliant artistic ability enhanced the presentation and allowed for some amazing moments of entertainment while delivering a powerful message of inspiration to the students. One of our best assemblies to date.....students want him back!!!

    - Principal, Iona Catholic Secondary School
  • Wes Williams was a motivational and inspirational speaker that engaged the students throughout his presentation at Iona Secondary school in Mississauga. He is a role model to all the young people who want to pursue their own dreams. Wes message had a positive influence this generation needs for success. By having Wes Wills speak in our high school, helped our students “Stick to their Vision”.

    - Teacher, Iona Catholic Secondary School

Summary Profile

As one of Canada’s most successful and influential Hip-Hop artists, Wes “Maestro” Williams was selected to be the guest speaker for the former Governor General of Canada’s Summit on Urban Arts when Her Excellency visited Vancouver, BC.

Wes has received two Juno Awards and his albums have reached gold and platinum status. His signature song ‘Let Your Backbone Slide’ was the first Canadian Hip Hop single to ever go gold. After establishing himself as one of Canada’s top musical artists, Wes decided to expand his resumé, took acting classes and pursued another artistic career. With each role his reputation grew stronger and stronger. He is one of Canada’s premier multi-media personalities.

Already a Juno Award-winning recording artist and Gemini Award nominated actor, Wes is also the author of the critically-acclaimed book, Stick To Your Vision. Endorsed by the former Governor General of Canada, Michaëlle Jean, as a “plan for action”, the book shows individuals how to define their vision, how to achieve it, and what to do once they are there. Stick To Your Vision was shortlisted for the Forest of Reading – White Pine Award. The White Pine Award is an annual literature award sponsored by the Ontario Library Association (OLA) that has awarded Canadian young adult books since 2002.

Wes has always been community-oriented and has made a serious impact on the country in many different capacities. He continues to support several charitable organizations such as War Child, Save The Children, Covenant House, Special Olympics, Battered Women’s Support Services (BWSS), and The African AIDS Society.

His 2015 single I Can’t Breathe speaks of how both external and internal forces are stifling the Black community. The song was inspired by the Eric Garner story in the US. Wes has also won two Juno Awards, four MuchMusic Video Awards (including People’s Choice) and has 12 Juno nominations.

He is the first Canadian rap artist to go gold (album & single), recorded the first Canadian Hip Hop single to go gold, has a platinum selling album (Symphony in Effect), and was the first hip hop artist to perform at the Juno Awards (1991). Wes’ inspirations include athletes, his community, other artists such as actors and musician and anyone who has a vision and the drive to make it manifest.

Wes hopes to be the inspiration for many by expressing himself through his music, acting and speaking. With his new book, Stick to Your Vision, Wes hopes to empower his community because his community has empowered him in many different ways.