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I Am The Walrus

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On November 22 our class headed back over to Koerner Hall, The Telus Centre for Performance & Learning for our first ever Walrus Talks. It was nice being back in the beautiful Koerner Hall and getting to experience what it looks like from a different part of the audience. The Walrus, with funding from RBC Foundation, hosted a night of “thought-provoking ideas about creating social change, the state of philanthropy, and the challenges and opportunities of making a better world”. Having all been familiar with Ted Talks we were interested in attending this event.

speaker at a podium

The Walrus Talks is a national series of events produced by the non-profit Walrus Foundation as part of an educational mandate to provide forums for conversations on matters vital to Canadians. When attending the talk the nationalistic pride was, in my opinion, fairly heavy handed. The Walrus Foundation produces The Walrus magazine, “the most awarded publication in Canada”, as well as producing content at, on Walrus TV, and hosting staged events like this one from coast to coast to coast. Having just come from our fundraising class it was hard not to notice how many times they mentioned donations and subscriptions, good for them!

theatre interior

The presenters we heard from were: Geoff Cape, CEO at Evergreen doing great things in the city. Stephen Huddart, President and CEO at the J.W. McConnell Family Foundation. Curator and ‘word warrior’ Wanda Nanibush. Tonya Surman, or as we refered to her, “the salad lady” who is actually the CEO of Centre for Social Innovation. The impressive and wonderfully geeky Julielynn Wong, physician-scientist, innovator and educator who spoke about 3-D printing medical tools. Kevin Vuong, Ashoka emerging innovator and co-founder who talked to us about bike racks.

One of our collective favourites, and the most dynamic and engaging speaker, David Love, a.k.a. ‘godfather of good’ who was from the organization Agents of Good.

Love spoke about fundraising which was the most relatable speaker as we had, as I said, just came straight from our fundraising class.