A graphic announcing the Honourable Marci Ien as the Equal Futures 2022 opening keynote speaker. A photo of Minister Ien is on the left side of the graphic. At the top of the right side is the text "Equal Futures 2022: A Gender Equality Summit". Below this text is a raspberry textbox. It includes the text "Opening keynote speaker Marci Ien Minister for Women and Gender Equality and Youth". The bottom half of the graphic includes the date of the summit, June 7-8, the location of the summit, Ottawa, and the hashtag, #EqualFutures2022. The bottom of the graphic includes the link to register, equalfuturesnetwork.ca/equal-futures-2022/, and three logos.

Registration for our first-ever gender equality summit, Equal Futures 2022, is now open

Featuring an inspiring set of keynote addresses, insightful panel discussions and practical workshops, we are delighted to share Equal Futures 2022’s preliminary program:

Keynote Highlight: The Honourable Marci Ien

The Honourable Marci Ien has served as Member of Parliament for Toronto Centre since October 2020.

Minister Ien is a devoted community leader and a passionate advocate for vulnerable communities in Canada and around the world. Prior to being elected to the House of Commons, she had an award-winning career in journalism and television that spanned three decades. She has travelled internationally with Journalists for Human Rights and World Vision.

Minister Marci Ien will kick off the summit on June 7, 2022 at 9 am EDT.

Keynote Highlight: Farzana Doctor (she/her)

A Tkaronto-based author, activist and a Registered Social Worker Psychotherapist, Farzana Doctor will be delivering the evening reception keynote on June 7. She has released four critically acclaimed novels, including Seven, which Ms. Magazine described as “fully feminist and ambitiously bold”, and was shortlisted for the Trillium and Evergreen Awards. Her new poetry collection, You Still Look The Same, which Quill & Quire has called “a powerful and necessary collection that breaks silences” was just released in May 2022. 

Keynote Highlight: Shanese Anne Steele

Shanese Indoowaaboo Steele is an Afro-Indigenous, Fat Femme living and learning on the traditional territory of the Anishinaabeg people and the Dish With One Spoon Wampum. With a Black father from Trinidad, with roots in Carriacou, Grenada and a Mixed mother of French and Native ancestry with ties to Nipissing First Nation and the Red Sky Independent Métis Nation, Shanese navigates the world as an Afro-Anishinaabe Kwe. Being Black, Native, Queer and Fat in a world that says all of these things should not exist.

A published writer, Shanese uses writing as an outlet to express her fears, joy and dreams. She has also spent the last 10 years as an activist facilitating workshops, creating curriculum, delivering training and guest speeches on Black and Indigenous Issues. Founder of the non-profit Aazhganan Project, Shanese works to educate Racialized and Indigenous peoples on their shared histories.

Keynote Highlight: Joanna Griffiths

Joanna Griffiths is the Founder and CEO of Knix and KT by Knix the direct-to-consumer intimate apparel brands that are reinventing intimates for real life. Through a focus on product innovation and the brand’s mission to empower women to be unapologetically free, a Knix item is now sold every 6 seconds.

Joanna holds multiple patents and has been cited in hundreds of media publications including Forbes, Fast Company, The New York Times and more. Joanna has been recognized on both the national and international stage for her work as a marketing disruptor championing the topics of body inclusivity, fertility, mental health and postpartum.

Joanna was the only Canadian to be named one of AdWeek’s 2021 Women Trailblazers, her long list of accolades includes Waterstone’s Most Admired CEO and Women of Influence’s Entrepreneur of the Year. Joanna holds an MBA with Distinction from INSEAD, sits on the board of Futurpreneur Canada and recently released her first book “Life After Birth” via globally renowned publisher Rizzoli.

The Equal Futures Network acknowledges that Indigenous people are the traditional guardians of Turtle Island, on the land also known as Canada

Read our full Territory Acknowledgment here.