Magnetic North 2022 Conference

Thank you for joining us!


Our first in-person conference in over two years was a great success! So many important topics were covered and eye-opening perspectives were uncovered to help push the needle of our Population Growth Forum. Our Magnetic North conference was fully hybrid as we allowed guests to join in-person or to join online as we streamed our entire conference through Zoom. 


Read the 2022 Conference Report


A special thanks to this year’s Youth Participant Sponsor:


Algoma University


1. Immigration Attitudes and Experiences with Racism in Northern Ontario (Mercedes Labelle) 

2. Service Canada Supports to Build Welcoming Communities (Chantal Bergeron) 

3. A New Solution to the Global Talent Crisis (Lara Dyer)


Magnetic North 2022 was our third annual Population Growth Forum. Attendees had the option to join in-person in Sault Ste. Marie, or virtual from across our regions. The discussions included topics such as reconciliation, anti-racism, attraction, settlement of domestic and international migrants, and retention of the existing populations. 


(Miigwech, Barbara, for delivering a very heartfelt traditional welcome and closing for the conference and providing in-person attendees with an opportunity to smudge in preparation for the two-day event.)



(Our first panel discussing Cross-Cultural Perspectives and Learning resources. Jane Omollo (center left), Equity, Diversity and Inclusion Manager at Algoma University, describing cultural sensitivity as intentional ‘lifelong learning’ alongside her fellow panelists, Audrey Gilbeau (left) and Gajith Jinadasa (right) and moderator, Vanessa Gould (center right). Thanks Jane, Audrey, and Gajith for sharing your insight with us!)




(Panel #2 discussing Case Studies in Indigenous driven innovation. Kevin Eshkawkogan, CEO of Indigenous Tourism Ontario, reminded us that consultation must include meaningful discussions, and be respectful and inclusive, and mutually beneficial, rather than simply a checkbox exercise. Miigwech, Kevin and Dwayne, for sharing your perspective and participating in the conference.)
(No photo of Dwayne Nashkawa (virtual panelist))



(One of our hybrid breakout session discussions)



(Panel #3: Supporting Diverse Group Involvement in Decision Making. Thank you Adolphine, Ali, and Mariette for sharing some very personal stories and experiences with us around your journey in getting to and obtaining leadership roles.)



(Sault Ste. Marie acting mayor Donna Hillsinger delivering opening remarks for Day 2!)


(Panel #4: Building Welcoming Communities: Research Perspective. Panelists shared their research findings around welcoming communities as a learning opportunity for conference attendees. Thank you, Natalya, Victoria, and Karly, for sharing your expertise and participating in this year’s conference!)


(Panel #5: Building Welcoming Communities: An Applied Perspective,Thank you, Anna, Stacey, and Moïse for your dedication and passion for making communities in Ontario’s northern regions more welcoming to all – and of course, for participating in this year’s conference!)  




(Panel #6: Magnetic North Progress Update. Panelists from Réseau du Nord, North Superior Workforce Planning Board, and Northern Policy Institute provided attendees with a progress update on initiatives led by their organization to implement 2021/2022 Magnetic North action items, and man! Have they been busy! Thank you Thomas, Shannon, and Holly, for participating in this year’s conference.)


Thank you to our partners!


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This project is made possible in part through the support of the Federal Economic Development Agency for Northern Ontario (FedNor) and the Northern Ontario Heritage Fund Corporation (NOHFC).