Sarah Simpson-Yellowquill appointed as program manager


Rachel Young

Outreach and Engagement Lead

The National Screen Institute – Canada (NSI) celebrates the promotion of Sarah Simpson-Yellowquill from Indigenous program coordinator to program manager.

In her role as program manager, Sarah now manages CBC New Indigenous Voices and co-manages the inaugural TikTok Accelerator for Indigenous Creators. Both programs provide customized, hands-on online training to Indigenous creators looking to advance their careers in the film, television and digital media industries.

Sarah is responsible for the structure and development of both programs – including content design, sourcing advisors, scheduling and financial reporting. Sarah is familiar with CBC New Indigenous Voices having worked on the program alongside former program manager Kaya Wheeler for the past three years.

“I’ve been able to watch, listen and learn from my colleagues, which I appreciate,” says Sarah. “I’m excited to continue what Kaya and I had started building in CBC New Indigenous Voices, and make the program fully Indigenous – from faculty, to presenters and advisors.”

Sarah – an Indigenous woman, born and raised on Treaty 1 Territory, (Winnipeg, Manitoba) and registered to Long Plain First Nation – joined the National Screen Institute team in 2019 as the Indigenous programs and administrative assistant providing support to NSI New Northern Voices and CBC New Indigenous Voices. Her role became more focused in early 2021 when she became the Indigenous program coordinator. This September, she officially became a full-time program manager.

“CBC New Indigenous Voices and NSI New Northern Voices participants have been blessed to have Sarah’s wise counsel and hands-on production experience guide them over the past three years,” says National Screen Institute CEO, Joy Loewen.

“In stepping into the position of program manager, we as a team and a larger circle of National Screen Institute participants will be fortunate to have Sarah’s insights and skillset to support creators who are changing the world through the power of story,” says Joy.

Through her multiple roles with the National Screen Institute, Sarah has always focused on supporting and encouraging participants to learn and gain confidence in the industry.

“What I’m doing is a small part of contributing to my community,” says Sarah. “It’s so rewarding for me to watch the participants grow, and take on new projects and opportunities.”

Sarah began exploring a career in the film industry in 2013 through an after-school program led by National Screen Institute alumnus and mentor, Roger Boyer. That year, she established her skills as a writer and director through her first film, Yes I Can, which screened at the Winnipeg Aboriginal Film Festival. Her next project, IndiGenie, screened internationally at LA SKINS FEST in 2020 and is set to screen at the American Indian Film Festival this November.

Sarah is the chair of the board of directors for the Winnipeg Film Group and co-chair of the board of directors for WNDX Festival of Moving Images. She previously worked as a production manager for Kaiju Productions.

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About the National Screen Institute – Canada (NSI)

Propelled by a visionary network of donors, private and public organizations, board members and staff, the National Screen Institute supports creators from across Canada to tell unforgettable stories. Through industry-informed training and mentoring in film, television and digital media, students and alumni find their voice and place on the global stage, inspiring us to shape a better world.

We are committed to training participants from a diverse community of voices including Black, Indigenous, People of Colour, women, lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, queer or questioning and two-spirit (LGBTQ2S+), people with disabilities, those outside large urban centres, those from regional and remote areas and various religious groups.

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Rachel Young, Outreach and Engagement Lead

The National Screen Institute is supported by: Core Funders: Manitoba Sport, Culture and Heritage, the City of Winnipeg through the Winnipeg Arts Council; Benefactors: TELUSTelefilm Canada; Patron: CBC; Builders: APTNBell Media; Indigenous Training Programs Partner: Directors Guild of Canada; Strategic Sponsors: Manitoba Film & MusicRBC Emerging Artists Projectdocumentary ChannelCBC GemCentre for Aboriginal Human Resource Development (CAHRD)Indigenous Screen Office (ISO)Canada Media Fund (CMF)The Winnipeg Foundation, Super Channel; Industry Partner: National Film Board of Canada; Friends: StantecWilliam F. White InternationalCompany 3.