Renaming and Reconciliation

August 4, 2021

Renaming and Reconciliation

Thank you to everyone who joined us on August 17 and August 19 for the "Renaming and Reconciliation" webinar. Over 500 people registered for this important discussion. 

To continue these conversations our weekly newsletter for August 20 will include links to articles discussing contemporary remaining efforts in Canada. You can sign up to receive the newsletter here.  

KH Webinar

Webinar Description:

Names matter. Throughout Canada, the names of settlers have been applied to streets, buildings, towns, and environmental features as celebrations of the namesakes’ perceived accomplishments. However, Canadians are beginning to reflect on the history of these famous figures, their legacies, and the impact of their actions on Indigenous and other marginalized populations. This webinar will explore some of the issues surrounding commemorative naming and the need to re-evaluate and contextualize the names we apply to places.  

We acknowledge that the information that will be shared in this virtual presentation can be triggering and result in unpleasant thoughts and feelings. We encourage you to practice self-care and reach out to your community for support. You can contact the Indian Residential School Survivors Society toll-free 1 (800) 721-0066 or 24hr Crisis Line 1 (866) 925-4419 if you require emotional support or assistance.

Know History Webinar Series                   

Know History’s webinar series is part of our ongoing response to the Truth and Reconciliation Commission (TRC). In particular, this series is intended to address Call to Action 92, which calls on the corporations to educate management and staff on the history of Indigenous peoples, including residential schools.

All of our webinars are designed in partnership with Indigenous educators, leaders, and/or activists. If you would like to suggest a topic for an upcoming webinar or share your knowledge with this audience, please email


Edna Elias

Edna served as the Commissioner of Nunavut from 2010 to 2015. She is a resident of Kugluktuk, Nunavut, and a beneficiary of the Nunavut Agreement. She is an advocate and active promoter of Inuit language, culture, and history within Canada. Edna founded the Edmonton Inuit Cultural Society and was involved in numerous renaming efforts within the City of Edmonton. Recently, she was part of Edmonton's Indigenous Ward Naming Knowledge Committee. You can learn more about her work in this video.  


Tom Van Dewark

As a public historian and the Director of Know History’s Western Operations, Tom leads interdisciplinary teams of historical researchers and creative designers, in collaboration with community stakeholders. He has worked with Indigenous communities across Canada to preserve and share their histories. During this presentation, Tom will provide a historical perspective on the significance of names and the long legacy of naming and re-naming places in what is now Canada.