2019 Keynote Speakers


Natasha Aruliah

Natasha worked as an advocate, activist and change agent both within organizations as well as independently, in the UK, Canada and internationally, for over 20 years. Trained as a counseling psychologist, Natasha’s passion is supporting individuals and groups to develop emotional and cultural competence to be able to engage fully and with compassion in difficult conversations across power differences, that promotes healing and social justice.

She now works as a consultant and facilitator in all areas of diversity, social justice, equity, and inclusion. In addition, she is on faculty and facilitates courses at University of British Columbia’s Centre for Intercultural Communication and the Justice Institute of BC’s Department of Counseling and Community Safety.



Edgar Villanueva

Author and philanthropy expert Edgar Villanueva is a leader on the cutting edge of social impact. He serves as on the boards of Native Americans in Philanthropy and the Andrus Family Fund, and is Vice President of Programs and Advocacy at The Schott Foundation. Edgar empowers all of us to seek out and understand our historical context fully so that we can all heal, individually and collectively. Using "money as medicine" Edgar applies his values to philanthropy as we know it today, and in doing so, lights the way for others to do the same.

Edgar’s new book, Decolonizing Wealth, “weaves a provocative analysis of the dysfunctional colonial dynamics at play in philanthropy and finance, and offers a prescription for restoring balance and healing our divides using the guidance of indigenous wisdom.” More



john a. powell

john a. powell is Director of the Haas Institute for a Fair and Inclusive Society and Professor of Law, African American, and Ethnic Studies at the University of California, Berkeley. He was previously the Executive Director at the Kirwan Institute for the Study of Race and Ethnicity at the Ohio State University and the Institute for Race and Poverty at the University of Minnesota. Prior to that john was the National Legal Director of the American Civil Liberties Union. He is a co-founder of the Poverty & Race Research Action Council and serves on the boards of several national and international organizations. john led the development of an “opportunity-based” model that connects affordable housing to education, health, health care, and employment and is well-known for his work developing the frameworks of “targeted universalism” and “othering and belonging” to effect equity-based interventions. john has taught at numerous law schools including Harvard and Columbia University. His latest book is Racing to Justice: Transforming our Concepts of Self and Other to Build an Inclusive Society.