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Leadership in Our Times: The Critical Issues Series

Leadership in our Times: The Critical Issues Series connects students with thought leaders with a societal focus. The Institute works to enrich student immersive learning experience by connecting them with active and impactful leaders in the community who discuss their leadership journeys and bring awareness to societal issues on which thought leadership and action is necessary.

Past Leadership in Our Times: The Critical Issues Series events

Reimagining Leadership in tackling homelessness

The James W. Burns Leadership Institute hosted a session for an intriguing leadership panel discussion with Mitch Bourbonniere - Community helper and founding member, Bear Clan Patrol and  Breda Vosters - RAY Inc. on homelessness in Winnipeg. The panelists shared their insights and experience on reimagining and leading change in homelessness.

Leadership in Our Times: Leading through crisis and lessons from COVID 19

The James W. Burns Leadership Institute hosted the event for "Leadership in Our Times: The Critical Issues Series" for a leadership discussion with Dr. Brent Roussin, Manitoba’s Chief Provincial Public Health Officer, as he shared about leading through crisis and lessons from the Covid-19 global pandemic.        

Born and raised in Manitoba, Dr. Roussin holds medical and law degrees from the University of Manitoba and is a Fellow of the Royal College of Physicians of Canada.

Dr. Roussin is a practicing physician and a specialist in public health and preventive medicine and assistant professor in the department of Community Health Sciences at the University of Manitoba.

The LGBT Purge in Canada: A Forgotten History

Michelle served as an officer in the Canadian Armed Forces from 1986 – 1989. Despite a distinguished service record, she was honorably discharged after being deemed “Not Advantageously Employable Due to Homosexuality”.
Join us as Michelle took us through her journey as a veteran, a survivor of Canada’s “LGBT Purge” and an activist in the movement to seek legal equality for the LGBT2Q+ community over the past 30 years.

Economic and Business Development at Naawi-Oodena: Canada's Showcase Urban Reserve

The James W. Burns Leadership Institute and Indigenous Business Education Partners (IBEP) at the Asper School of Business welcomed Sutherland and Daniels to discuss their leadership journey and the role they play in the development of Naawi-Oodena, including the significance of the land’s important and historic location in the centre of Turtle Island (North America), previously known as Kapyong Barracks. 

James W. Burns Leadership Institute Virtual Lunch and Learn

The JWBLI Leadership Lunch and Learns are virtual sessions with individual Advisory Board members or several members as part of a panel to discuss leadership and related topics with students from any faculty at the University of Manitoba and participating partner institutions. The Series aims to enrich students' immersive learning experience by connecting them with active and impactful leaders in the community who can help them further develop their own leadership and broaden their network.

Past Virtual Lunch and Learn

Racism in Sport in Winnipeg

November 14, 2022

In the second event in the Leadership Lunch and Learn Series for 2022-23, Project consultants Craig Brown and Daria Jorquera Palmer shared their findings on racism in sport in Winnipeg and pathways toward anti-racism through leadership. The session depicted that how anti-racism in sport in Winnipeg is being advanced through leadership on various fronts and how we can help reduce racism in sport at any level.

Creative Leadership: Exploring your creativity toolbox

October 6, 2022

The October 6th virtual event featured Dr. Christine Watson, Vice-President, Academic, RRC Polytech

Dr. Christine Watson talked about the journey of exploring your creativity in leadership in an interactive lunch hour workshop - Creative Leadership: Exploring your creativity toolbox. Christine believes that everyone is creative, and that creativity is a key leadership skill – one that can be learned and strengthened over time. Christine is the host of CreativeMornings Winnipeg, the new chapter of the global organization CreativeMornings (headquarters in NYC) with the purpose of hosting free monthly events to highlight all the unique creative voices in Winnipeg. Christine is a dedicated member of the James W. Burns Leadership Institute Advisory Board.Dr. Watson has served in Canadian higher education senior administration, leadership, teaching and research roles for the last 20+ years. She has held administrative and teaching positions at Red River College Polytechnic, Kwantlen Polytechnic University, University of Regina and First Nations University of Canada.

Preparing for the future: Leading the WRHA as a critical partner in the health and wellness of the community

April 29, 2022

The April 29th virtual event featured Mike Nader, President and CEO WRHA

Mike Nader, President and Chief Executive Officer, Winnipeg Regional Health Authority 

Mike holds a Bachelor of Science and a Master of Business Administration from the University of British Columbia, along with a Master of Arts in Health Care Leadership and Training from Royal Roads University. He brings with him decades of senior health care leadership experience.
He has served in numerous executive management roles with public healthcare systems in British Columbia and Ontario. Most recently, he served as the Chief Transformation Officer at Ontario Health, with responsibility for leading the transition of 20 provincial agencies and local health integration networks into a single provincial agency. He was on secondment from the University Health Network (UHN) in Toronto, where he served as the Executive Vice-President, Clinical Support and Performance. Prior to this role, he served as the Chief Operating Officer at UHN with responsibility for the clinical operations at Toronto General and Toronto Western Hospitals, Princess Margaret Cancer Centre, and the Toronto Rehabilitation Institute. In British Columbia, he worked at Vancouver Coastal Health since its inception in a variety of senior leadership roles including Chief Operating Officer for Richmond and for Coastal communities of care.

The New Canadian: Stuck in the Middle

December 6, 2021

The December 6th virtual event featured Shreeraj Patel [BComm(Hons.)/02], Vice President Commercial Financial Services at RBC.

Shreeraj Patel’s discussion focus on EDI with his topic:  “The New Canadian – stuck in the middle”

Patel, has an extensive background and involvement in the financial industry both in Commercial and Corporate banking for the last 18 years and is a passionate member of the Asper School of Business Equity, Diversity and Inclusion (EDI) Task force and a member of the James W. Burns Leadership Institute Advisory Board.


Leadership Masterclass Research Series

The Leadership Masterclass Research Series aims to highlights research relevant to leadership, delivered plain language that resonates to leaders across sectors, faculty or graduate students interested in leadership. Events in the series will focus on new trends in family business and executive leadership research.

Past Leadership Masterclass Research Series

Human Rights Pedagogy for Empowering the Agency of Students

James W. Burns Leadership Institute hosted the Leadership Masterclass: "Human Rights Pedagogy for Empowering the Agency of Students" with Professor Ramanujam for her talk exploring the potential of the capabilities approach informed pedagogy in the context of experiential legal education and other contexts.

Dr. Nandini Ramanujam is the Co-Director and Director of Programs of the Centre for Human Rights and Legal Pluralism at McGill University's Faculty of Law

Leadership in Complex Environments

Dr. Malvina Klag shared her research on leadership in complex environments in the first event of the Leadership Masterclass Research Series for 2022-23, hosted by the Burns Leadership Institute. She shared her insights about current understanding and food for thought on leadership within complex organizations and systems such as healthcare Dr. Klag addressed the questions: what do we know, what do we think, and what does all that mean for who leads and how?

Leadership Succession of Family Firms

Dr. James Chrisman of Mississippi State University. Dr. Chrisman discussed new trends in family business and executive leadership research, as it relates to leadership succession in family firms. Dr. Chrisman is one of North America’s leading experts on this very timely topic. We were proud to welcome him to the first installment of the James W. Burns Leadership Institute’s 2021-2022 “Leadership Masterclass Research Series.”