Meet the Board

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Meet the Board 2018-04-20T09:40:16+00:00
Jocelyn Dorrington

Jocelyn Dorrington

Chairperson, DBDLI Board Member (2012 – Present)

Jocelyn Dorrington is currently the Coordinator of African Nova Scotian Cultural Services for the Chignecto Central Regional School Board. Ms. Dorrington has over 30 years of experience working in education in Nova Scotia, in both the classroom and administrative positions. She has worked for several years as Executive Director of the Black Educators Association and almost seven years as Assistant Director of the African Canadian Services Division of the Department of Nova Scotia.

Through her work, Jocelyn brings experience and perspective in community advocacy, school board system and from a government perspective. Jocelyn has played a major role in developing public school curriculum, school board and department policy and developed programs. Jocelyn has always been involved with and committed to the advancement of the academic, cultural, and economics of African Nova Scotian learners and their communities. She works to promote Africentric philosophy and principles, African history and contributions and equity in her professional, volunteer and personal life. She resides in New Glasgow, Nova Scotia.

Yvonne Atwell

Yvonne Atwell

Vice-Chairperson, DBDLI Board Member (2012 – Present)

Yvonne Atwell is presently the Executive Director of the Community Justice Society. She is the owner of Atwell & Atwell Human Resource Consultants. She has worked as a Policy Officer and Diversity Programs Officer at the Atlantic Centre of Excellence for Women’s Health. Yvonne won a Provincial seat in the Nova Scotia Legislative Assembly in 1997 representing the riding of Preston, making her the first Black woman in Atlantic Canada to sit as an MLA. She worked as Managing Director of the African Canadian Employment Clinic from 1993 to 1997. As a community researcher, Yvonne has produced several reports including the report for the Preston Area Housing Fund, the Black Men’s Health Network and the Health Canada Research Program “Community Dialogue”. She is one of the founding members of the Health Association for African Canadians. Presently she is a board member of the Criminal Justice Association and a Member of the Minister’s Advisory committee on Citizen Engagement. Yvonne resides in East Preston.

Darrin Talbot

Treasurer, DBDLI Board Member (2017 – Present)

Darrin Talbot is a Tax Associate Partner in EY’s Halifax office and is the Tax Account Leader for many of Atlantic Canada’s largest public companies. From his 18 years of tax experience in both public practice and private industry, he provides a full range of taxation services to public and private companies. His client base includes real estate and consumer products companies with national and global operations.

W. Dean Smith

W. Dean Smith

Secretary, DBDLI Board Member (2012 – Present)

Dean Smith is currently employed as legal counsel with the Federal Department of Justice.  Prior to joining the Federal Public Service, Dean was employed as legal counsel to the Provincial Department of Justice.  He has litigated civil matters on behalf of the Attorneys General at all levels of court including the Supreme Court of Canada, Federal Court of Appeal, and the Courts of Appeal for Nova Scotia, Prince Edward Island and Newfoundland and Labrador.  He is co-chair of the Dr. P. Anthony Johnstone Scholarship Committee for human rights sponsored by the Department of Labour and Advanced Education.  He is a member of the Board of Directors of the Black Ice Hockey and Sports Hall of Fame Society, and volunteers as a certified hockey instructor to the Black Youth Ice Hockey Initiative co-sponsored by Hockey Nova Scotia.  He is co-writer and narrator of the audio presentation Africville: Not For Sale.  Dean hails from Whitney Pier, Cape Breton, but has lived and worked in Halifax since 1985.

Susan M. Brigham

Susan M. Brigham

Director, DBDLI Board Member (2012 – Present)

Susan Brigham is Professor in the Faculty of Education, Mount Saint Vincent University. She teaches in the Graduate Studies of Lifelong Learning Program and the Inter-university Doctoral program in Educational Studies (MSVU, Acadia and St FX). Dr. Brigham is coordinator of the Graduate Studies of Lifelong Learning program, and the Chair of the Alexa McDonough Institute for Women, Gender and Social Justice. As a school teacher and later as a researcher/professor Dr. Brigham has worked in NB, NS, AB and BC as well as Ireland, Kuwait, Nepal, the Philippines, Hong Kong, Jamaica, South Africa, and the island of Saint Helena (South Atlantic Ocean). She is the co-editor of two recent books: Theorizing Africentricity in Action: Who We Are is What We See (2012, Fernwood) and Building on Critical Traditions: Adult Education and Learning in Canada (2013, Thompson).

Amberina Beals

Amberina Beals

DBDLI Board Member (2016 – Present)

Amberina Beals is currently a 3rd year Communications and Public Relations student at Mount Saint Vincent University. She is passionate about being involved in changing the dynamics of African Nova Scotians and she feels compelled to have our youth voices heard. Amberina recently completed a summer internship with the DBDLI as our Researcher/Writer.

Gilbert Daye

Gilbert Daye

DBDLI Board Member (2016 – Present)

Gilbert Daye has worked for close to 25 years in the field of multicultural engagement specializing in program and service delivery primarily to the African Nova Scotian communities and First Nation organizations. His experience is broad and includes the facilitation of conferences, training events and strategic planning sessions relating to community issues. He is passionate about human rights as it relates to community development, literacy and cultural differences. He is the Chair of the Buddy Daye Scholarship Advisory Committee, member of the Black Loyalist Heritage Society, and Past Chair of the Dalhousie Legal Aid Society.

Mukisa Kakembo

Mukisa Kakembo

DBDLI Board Member (2016 – Present)

Mukisa Kakembo is currently in her 3rd year of Psychology at Dalhousie University. As an African Nova Scotian youth, she brings an important firsthand perspective of the education system to the DBDLI. For the past two years, she has participated in the DalConnects Worldwide Committee, where she has helped shape service learning programs and organized local fundraisers in support of aid for developing countries. Through the program she has travelled abroad and gained an appreciation for what it takes to affect real change. She has been engaged in her local community as a volunteer at Ronald McDonald House and Feed Nova Scotia.

Mukisa Kakembo

Randy Headley

DBDLI Board Member (2018 – Present)

Randy Headley is currently the Graduate Admissions Officer at Mount Saint Vincent University. He has over ten (10) years of experience working in the post-secondary environment.

He is the founder of the MSVU Africentric Support Group (ASG). He also coordinated activities for Black students through the ASG from 2013-2017 and continues to advocate on their behalf.

His thesis “The learning experiences of members of an Africentric Support Group at a small urban-based Nova Scotian university”, provided solutions for an equitable and inclusive learning experience for Black students at post-secondary institutions in Nova Scotia.