Indigenous peoples represent a rich diversity of cultures, religions, traditions, languages and histories.
Of more than 130 clinically useful major prescriptive drugs that are derived from plants over 70% came to the attention of pharmaceutical companies because of Indigenous peoples use in traditional forms of medicine.
Latest NewsJul 15, 2019
Say Magazine Features The International Indigenous Speakers Bureau
International Indigenous Speakers Bureau
Inspiring. Empowering. Uplifting.
Founded in 2016, the International Indigenous Speakers Bureau (IISB) is the first of its kind where Indigenous speakers and Knowledge-Keepers are provided a platform to share their gifts on a global stage, and where audiences have the opportunity to access the wealth of Indigenous knowledge and perspectives.
The Demand for Indigenous Speakers
With the present demand for Indigenous speakers, unless you know a friend who has a friend, finding an appropriate one can often be difficult and very time-consuming. With access to a huge range of Indigenous talents through IISB you can be sure they will help you find the Indigenous speaker you are looking for. IISB takes the mystery out of the process by providing access to a large, diverse roster of Indigenous speakers.
Another one of the biggest challenges is not just ‘who’ to connect with, but ‘how’. IISB takes special care to provide a welcoming environment for its clients to ask questions and learn. From beginning to end IISB helps clients choose the right speaker, develop a positive speaker-client relationship and do what they can to ensure everyone involved has a successful experience.
Investing in our People
The commitment and support IISB provides to its speakers is unparalleled. Indigenous people come from a world of storytellers and understand the power of the spoken word. Stories can heal, inspire and transform lives. For this reason, much time and care is taken to develop each speaker’s individual story, empowering them to value their gifts and talents, and find their voice. IISB is dedicated to improving the financial sustainability of Indigenous speakers, ensuring Indigenous speakers are seen, heard and valued around the globe, which includes negotiating fair value agreements.
Circle of Honouring
One of the most important mandates of IISB is ensuring Indigenous speakers are honoured appropriately.
Back in the day, when people came to our Indigenous communities sharing their gifts of knowledge, expertise and story, they were honoured to the highest degree. It was an Indigenous way of knowing that when something was given, something of equal or greater value was given back. This ensures sustainability and growth of a community. Back then that meant that the Knowledge-Keeper was well taken care of; they were fed, clothed, housed and their families were taken care of as well. This was also usually for a season, not a day.
Today we cannot go out and shoot a buffalo for someone or invite a family in to live with us, but we can make sure they are able to feed, clothe and shelter their families, and prosper in the process. This means making sure that the gifts the Indigenous speakers are offering are remunerated at par with industry standards and at the same level as non-indigenous speakers.
“When we come from this approach of honouring appropriately, we encourage a process of developing sustainability and growth. We also encourage the development of relationships from a respectful place and avoid coming from the old practice of tokenism,” said Shannon Loutitt, CEO of the IISB.
Speakers and Knowledge-Keepers
IISB speakers cover a plethora of topics including education, health and healing, science (such as genetics and engineering), sport, film, economics, and fashion, just to name a few.
Upon visiting their website you may note a few familiar Canadian Icons like Michelle Thrush (actor) and Andrea Menard (actress/singer), among other global champions.
The Indigenous Lens
Often when people think about what an Indigenous speaker can do for them, they associate that with learning about Indigenous history, culture, dance or legends. Although this can be true if this is what is requested, IISB’s CEO, Shannon Loutitt says Indigenous speakers bring something else that is equally valuable: “They bring their Indigenous lens.”
Indigenous speakers provide a unique perspective on the world we live in, and with it offer a wealth of solutions and insights to many modern-day issues. Science has proven that the Western World tends to see things through a narrow sharp focused lens, which is great for getting a detailed perspective. That lens is very effective at drilling down or focusing like a telescopic view, whereas Indigenous people see the world through a wider holistic lens, allowing them to connect the dots on many seemingly unrelated issues. Both lenses are extremely valuable to our world, and we can use both of them to problem solve. Until recently, it’s predominantly been the Western lens that has been used to find solutions to our world’s problems. But times are changing, and the world is recognizing that we need more ideas and perspectives to address our planetary challenges.
IISB provides the ideal platform for organizations who want to access that Indigenous lens, through leaders, experts and advisors from around the world.
Latest News / Events
Latest NewsJul 25, 2019
Say Magazine featured our very own Jaris in their Education Guide (Issue 95, 2019). Their article was titled: Jaris Swidrovich Shares his Views on Education
Check out the article on Say Magazine's Site: https://saymag.com/jaris-swidrovich-shares-his-views-on-education/
Latest NewsJul 15, 2019
Say Magazine is featuring us and some of our speakers. Check it out at https://saymag.com/international-indigenous-speakers-bureau/
Featured in CBC’s Moccassins & Concrete documentary and having performed with the likes of Serena Ryder, Andrea Menard, Plex and many others, Eddy Robinson’s perspective and drum beats are highly sought after.
Eddy Robinson is a caring and motivated educator, speaker, and life changer. He speaks to the need for understanding the benefits of knowing your culture. Eddy will enlighten and entertain with passionate, personal narratives, along with a depth of insight into indigenous culture and knowledge.
Named one of CBC Saskatchewan’s "Future 40", Dr. Jaris Swidrovich is Canada's first self-identified First Nations Doctor of Pharmacy. As President of the Canadian Society of Hospital Pharmacists, and member of numerous other boards Swidrovich brings his successful multiversity experience of bridging organizational needs with Health Care mandates. Passionate about health, education, and how Indigenous and marginalized people are impacted at local, provincial, national, and international levels, Dr. Swidrovich delivers powerful presentations illustrating how we can all be part of the cure and partake in the Truth and Reconciliation Commission of Canada's Calls to Action.
Gemini Award winning Actress, and multi-award nominee, including Best Lead Actress and Best Actress in a TV series, powerhouse celebrity Michelle Thrush knows what it takes to light up a stage. Wit, humour, passion, and creativity are just a few of Michelle’s attributes, outside of celebrity, that draw her to stages world-wide. Whether she is speaking from her heart, hosting galas, or breaking down the barriers of stereotypes, Michelle engages, captivates, and moves audiences to feel and see her unique vision of life.
Multi-award winning International Leadership Speaker and Author, Ngahihi o te ra Bidois is known as "The Face of New Zealand" inspires with the timeless wisdom from the Maori culture. This Modern day warrior’s presentation on "Ancient Wisdom Modern Solutions" is why he is the recipient of the National Professional Speakers Association, New Zealand Inspirational Speaker of the Year. A Maori leader, Ngahi combines centuries of tradition, along with his hands-on business experience, and academic qualifications to bring a message that transcends cultural boundaries.