Connect • Learn • Grow

Keynote speakers

Dr. Lee Brown‌

Dr. Lee Brown is the former Director of the Institute of Aboriginal Health in the College of Health Disciplines and the Indigenous Doctoral Program in the Department of Educational Studies at The University of British Columbia where he wrote his Doctoral Thesis entitled: Making the Classroom a Healthy Place: The Develop of Affective Competency in Aboriginal Pedagogy.. He is the Co-author of The Sacred Tree, an educational curriculum based in Aboriginal values and epistemology. Lee has also contributed to the Round Lake Native Healing Centre in Vernon, BC during the last Thirty years in a number of capacities including clinical supervisor and currently as a cultural resource to the centre. He has been the keynote speaker at over one hundred Aboriginal conferences. He has been an invited to share his knowledge of culture and healing in over five hundred indigenous communities in North America.

Dr. Brown has developed a theory of holistic emotional education that is predicated upon six principles of emotional competency that arise out of his research in the area of affective education and learning. Lee also facilitates the annual Emotional Education Conference and is a co-founder of the Global Emotional Education Association. Lee is published in Academic Journals on the subject of Emotional Education including the Canadian Journal of Native Education and AlterNative: A New Zealand International Journal of Indigenous Scholarship. Lee has also served as the guest editor of the UBC Educational Leadership Journal.

Dr. Susan Biali Haas

Expert in Burnout Prevention, Stress Management and Resilience | Mental Health Advocate

An award-winning medical doctor, Dr. Susan Biali Haas’ life passion is to equip people with the knowledge, skills, and tools to live better lives. Formerly clinically depressed and burned out, Dr. Biali Haas turned her life around by extensively studying how to overcome these two debilitating conditions. Today, she inspires a broad range of clients — from military leaders and senior executives to physicians and other health care professionals — to take control of their mental and physical health and start living more impactful, meaningful lives.

Internationally recognized as a health and well-being influencer, Dr. Biali Haas is in demand as an expert for national and international media. She has been featured on The Today Show and The Marilyn Denis Show, as well as, Forbes, Fast Company, The Chicago Tribune, Self, Fitness, Health, Martha Stewart Living, People, InStyle, Elle, Prevention, The Washington Post, The New York Post, and The Globe and Mail

A popular blogger for Psychology Today, Dr. Biali Haas’ columns have attracted more than seven million views. In addition, Dr. Biali Haas was invited to be a member of Chatelaine magazine’s Health Advisory Board, and was the “Embrace Life Expert” for Reader’s Digest Best Health magazine. She also contributed to Reader’s Digest’s bestselling book, The Swap and Drop Diet, consulted as a coach for Cosmopolitan, and appeared on the “Cosmo Happy Hour” podcast.

Whether leading an intimate workshop or delivering a rousing keynote to thousands, Dr. Biali Haas shines as a passionate teacher. She has presented to a variety of organizations, government agencies, associations, and universities across North America.

Dr. Biali Haas holds a Doctorate of Medicine and a Bachelor’s of Science in Dietetics from the University of British Columbia. She has received numerous academic and personal awards. Dr. Biali Haas has been recognized by American Express as a “Real Life Potentialist,” someone who has branched from traditional paths to reach their full potential through pursuit of their passions. She also dances flamenco professionally and has performed on stages from Canada to Latin America.


Featured performers

Dr. Jonathan Hughes

Jonathan Hughes joined UFV in 2006 and is currently Director of the School of Land Use and Environmental Change. Alongside his studies of landscape ecology, Jonathan plays guitar and writes songs inspired by personal experience. Whether original composition or cover, each song has personal resonance and is accompanied by story. Join Jonathan to learn how music helps to keep him well and enhances his professional development

Photo: Dr. Jonathan Hughes performing at Tractor Grease, Chilliwack.‌

Photo credit: Kat Peeple

Rajnish Dhawan‌

Rajnish Dhawan is an Associate Professor for the English Department, and also loves performing stand-up comedy.‌‌

Here are some comedy accomplishments:

  • Won the Fraser Valley Comedy competition in 2018 
  • Performed at Tinder Tales in 2018. 
  • Performed at Just For Laughs (North West) in 2019 received the audience choice award. 
  • Feature comic at the Blackberry festival, Powell River, BC in 2019. 
  • Headliner, Monsoon Comedy festival 2019. 
  • Made to the long list of CBC’s Next Up comedy competition in 2019. 
  • Performed at F is for Funny, the South Asian edition comedy show at the Anvil Centre, New Westminster in 2019. 
  • Made to the semi-finals at the Yuk Off comedy competition in 2019 
  • Headliner at the University of Fraser Valley comedy showcase, 2019 and 2020.  


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