Dr. Debby Wilson Danard PhD, MEd, BEd.

Dr. Deb is Anishinaabekwe traditional knowledge practitioner, visual and performance artist, lecturer, writer, water protector, life promotion ambassador and sturgeon clan member from Rainy River First Nation. Growing up, she was raised with her grandmother’s love and commitment to sharing traditional Anishinaabek teachings and way of life.

Dr. Deb was recently awarded a 2019 - 2021 University of Toronto Provost’s Postdoctoral Fellowship in the Women and Gender Studies.  She is writing her first book, that expands her original doctoral research, “Medicine Wheel Surviving Suicide-Strengthening Life Bundle” (2016)


While working as a Suicide Prevention Coach at the Ontario Centre of Excellence for Child and Youth Mental Health, she co-founded the Feather Carriers: Leadership for Life Promotion (2015) an aspiring national wise (suicide prevention) practice .  She also held a postdoctoral fellowship at Waypoint Centre for Mental Health Care (2017), and is owner of Union Star Consulting Life Teachings Lodge.  She has actively advanced traditional knowledge and Indigenous research with many urban (Friendship Centres, MNO, COO, BANAC) and on-reserve (Zhingwaako Za-iganing, Mnjinkaning) communities and organizations, and several post-secondary institutions. 

As a leader for change, Dr. Deb strengthens life from the heart of Indigenous identity, sovereignty and autonomy as an evolving, creative, and living continuum of knowing and being.​