Presented by the National Screen Institute – Canada (NSI)
Lisa Meeches, Indigenous Training Programs Advisor
Lisa Meeches is one of the most dynamic and respected producers in the film industry and is Anishinaabe from Long Plain First Nation.
After studying broadcasting in North Dakota, Lisa began her career in 1986 with the Native Media Network. She later began news reporting for Craig Broadcasting Systems in Manitoba and Alberta, where she established a liaison team who connected the newsroom with surrounding First Nations communities.
Her journalism career recently came full circle with a Beyond Borders Media Award for her work on Taken as co-creator, executive producer and host, for which Lisa has also been nominated for two Canadian Screen Awards (best factual series, best cross platform project). Lisa is also an episode director on the series.
She is the founding partner and executive producer of Eagle Vision, the most prolific production company in Canadian history with Indigenous ownership.
Lisa has produced numerous projects to critical acclaim including The Sharing Circle, Canada’s longest running Indigenous television series; Ice Road Truckers; Tipi Tales, a Parent’s Choice award-winning children’s series; and Elijah, a Gemini Award-winning MOW; and the three-time nominated, two-time CSA winner for JACK.
She executive produced the four-time CSA nominee and two-time winner We Were Children, which is widely praised by residential school survivors for its power to heal, while general audiences have been moved by its accurate and truthful portrayal of the impacts of Canada’s colonial past. Prior to this project, Lisa travelled the country with her team interviewing residential school survivors about their experiences for the Legacy of Hope project.
Most recently Lisa served as creative director/executive producer for the National MMIWG Inquiry. Her work was honoured with two gold medals at the international Shorty Awards for excellence in social media. Other Eagle Vision Inc. productions include the comedies Lovesick, Walk All Over Me, which premiered at Toronto International Film Festival (TIFF) and sold to the Weinstein Company, the politically-charged romantic comedy Blue State, and the Academy Award®-winning feature film Capote. Lisa is co-executive producer on the CBC/eOne series Burden of Truth.
Lisa also devotes considerable time to other causes. She has been critical to the success of the Manito Ahbee Festival since its inception 15 years ago where she has acted in the capacity of board chair on a volunteer basis until recently stepping down to assume the role of executive director.
True to her heritage, Lisa is a renowned champion fancy shawl dancer. Lisa is executive producer of Orange Daisy Project, a social action campaign in support of mental health for teen girls. Among her numerous awards and nominations are: 2007 National Aboriginal Achievement Award for Media & Communication, 2009 YMCA-YWCA Woman of Distinction Award in the area of Creative Communications, University of Manitoba’s Excellence in Aboriginal Business Leadership Award, Women in Film and Television 2009 Crystal Award for Mentorship, Order of Manitoba, and she was even Ms. Chatelaine.
Lisa is also an alumna of NSI.
Kaya Wheeler, Program Manager
As manager of programs and development, Kaya works across many of NSI’s courses including as program co-manager of NSI IndigiDocs. She was also part of the faculty for the inaugural year of NSI New Northern Voices.
Kaya – of Anishnaabe and Nehiyaw descent – is a registered member of Sagkeeng First Nation in Manitoba. She graduated from the University of Winnipeg with a bachelor of arts in Indigenous Studies, and has been working within the Indigenous community in Winnipeg for more than 10 years. She has spent a large portion of this time working with Indigenous youth in many areas, including acting and storytelling for theatre. She has had experience both volunteering and working on film sets, and even had a small stint on the stage and in front of the camera.
Kaya is excited to be in a role that helps hone and amplify new and existing voices in the industry.
Sarah Simpson-Yellowquill, Coordinator
Sarah Simpson-Yellowquill is a multi-talented Indigenous woman, registered to Long Plain First Nation and raised in Winnipeg, Manitoba.
Sarah is a filmmaker with extensive experience who is dedicated to her craft. She went from thinking filmmaking could only be a hobby to making it a full-time career. She has made multiple short films which have screened at North American festivals.
She works as a production manager and is the program coordinator for the CBC New Indigenous Voices training program run by the National Screen Institute. She is also a board member for the WNDX Festival of Moving Image.
Sarah strives to create stories and to help others share their stories through the medium of filmmaking.
2020 associate faculty
* Indicates NSI alumni
Indigenous and life guidance
Colin Mousseau – Elder/Traditional Advisor
Dr. Winona Wheeler – Indigenous history
Ryan Cooper* – Rainy Storm Productions
Jon Montes – National Film Board
Coty Savard – National Film Board
Michelle St. John
Jeff Newman – Nüman Films
Robin Summerfield – CBC
Paul Barnsley – APTN
Nadia Gaudet – APTN
Jordan Wheeler – writer
Other industry resources
Rosanna Deerchild – CBC
Darcy Fehr – actor
Steven Foster – Directors Guild Of Canada (Manitoba)
Terence Fuller – IATSE 865
Noël Habel – Canada Council for the Arts
Julie Hackett – editor
Anita Lubosch – sound technician
Louise O’Brien-Moran – Manitoba Film & Music
Monique Perro – City of Winnipeg
Rob Rowen – IATSE Local 865
Adam Smoluk* – Film Training Manitoba
Taavo Soodor – production designer
Kerry Swanson* – Indigenous Screen Office
Kim Wheeler – podcast producer
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CBC New Indigenous Voices is funded by Title, Presenting and Tuition Sponsor CBC; Program Partners Manitoba Sport, Culture & Heritage, the Centre for Aboriginal Human Resource Development (CAHRD), Telefilm Canada; Indigenous Training Programs Partner Directors Guild of Canada; Supporting Sponsors Corus Entertainment, Super Channel; Provincial Sponsor Manitoba Film & Music; Industry Supporters IATSE Local 856, imagineNATIVE Film + Media Arts Festival, Film Training Manitoba; Service Sponsors iSplice Films, Final Draft. NSI Core Funders are Manitoba Sport, Culture & Heritage and the City of Winnipeg through the Winnipeg Arts Council.