Research Team

Steering Committee

Kristina Llewellyn
Oral History Knowledge Cluster Lead
Kristina R. Llewellyn is the Director of DOHR. She is an Associate Professor of Social Development Studies at Renison University College, University of Waterloo. She is the author of Democracy’s Angels: The Work of Women Teachers (MQUP, 2012), co-editor of The Canadian Oral History Reader (MQUP, 2015), and co-editor of Oral History and Education: Theories, Dilemmas, and Practices (Palgrave, 2017). Kristina was recently honoured as one of Education’s 100 by UBC and awarded the Marion Dewar Prize. Her areas of research and teaching include educational history, history education, citizenship education, and oral history education. For questions about the project, you may contact her at
Tony Smith
Victims of Institutional Child Exploitation Society (VOICES), African Nova Scotian Culture Knowledge Cluster Lead
Tony Smith has spent most of his adult life helping people who are marginalized—those in the child welfare system or the criminal justice system, and those who struggle with mental illness and addictions. He is best known for his work advocating for those who suffered abuse and neglect at the Nova Scotia Home for Colored Children (NSHCC). In 2012, Tony and other former NSHCC residents co-founded the Victims of Institutional Child Exploitation Society (VOICES), a support and advocacy group. Tony and the VOICES executive led the call for a public inquiry into the NSHCC, which the province initiated in 2014. They also helped secure class-action settlements with the NSHCC and the provincial government, both of whom offered public apologies to the former residents. Tony was a driving force on the design team that created a Restorative Inquiry meant to address systemic issues and lead to social change. He continues to serve the inquiry as council co-chair. Throughout the inquiry design and implementation, Tony has demonstrated a commitment to building relationships between public agencies and the African Nova Scotian community in an effort to shape a better and more just future together.
Tracey Dorrington-Skinner
Victims of Institutional Child Exploitation Society (VOICES)
Tracey Dorrington-Skinner is a a survivor of the Nova Scotia Home for Colored Children. She has been a co-chair of VOICES and a member of the design team for the restorative inquiry advisory committee. She has devoted 20 years of service to the Chignecto-Central Regional School Board as a African Canadian liaison officer. She is also the proud mother of two adult daughters and a very proud grandmother to one new grandson.
Gerry Morrison
Victims of Institutional Child Exploitation Society (VOICES)
Gerald Morrison was born in Middleton, Nova Scotia, in 1952. He was put into the Nova Scotia Home for Colored Children (NSHCC) at the age of 2 where he remained until 1960. At 8 years of age Gerald was placed into a foster home and resided there until he graduated from Queen Elizabeth High School. Gerald attended University for 2 years and left when he got a full time position with a major dairy in the Halifax region. Gerald spent 28 years in all aspects of the dairy industry. He was involved with his local union as a President for 28 years and fought for the rights of all workers. Gerald left the dairy industry to start his own Gourmet Ice Cream business in 2000. He manufactures and sells Gourmet Ice Cream under the name Black Bear Ice Cream Emporium Ltd. Gerald was involved with the class-action lawsuit that was won against the NSHCC and the Nova Scotia Government. He is a co-chair of VOICES (Victims of Institutional Childhood Exploitation Society), a member of the UJIMA design team and Council of Parties for the NSHCC Restorative Inquiry. Gerald presently lives in Bedford, Nova Scotia with his wife of 39 years, Roberta, and has 2 children, Brandon, 28 and Kaleena 34. He also has a loving grand-daughter Jade, 5 years of age who is his pride and joy.
Jennifer Llewellyn
Restorative Learning Knowledge Cluster Lead
Jennifer Llewellyn is the Viscount Bennett Professor of Law at the Schulich School of Law, Dalhousie University. Her research is focused on relational theory, restorative justice, truth commissions, human rights and a restorative approach to education. Professor Llewellyn advises on the use of a restorative approach nationally and internationally, including as advisor to the Nova Scotia Restorative Justice Program, the Provincial Restorative Approach in Schools Project and the Nova Scotia Human Rights Commission. She facilitated the design process for the Restorative Public Inquiry into the Home for Colored Children and serves as advisor to the process.
Jennifer Roberts-Smith
Virtual Reality Knowledge Cluster Lead
Jennifer Roberts-Smith is Associate Professor and Associate Chair of Theatre and Performance at the University of Waterloo. Her current research explores audience engagements with theatre and its digital analogues, with a particular interest in engagements that generate new knowledge. In addition to leading the Virtual Reality team of the Digital Oral Histories for Reconciliation project, Jennifer is Director of the Q Collaborative, a feminist design research lab focused on performance and technology in public practices. She is Principal Investigator of the Stratford Festival Online and Simulated Environment for Theatre (SET) projects, as well as a member of the WatCV project. Her work has been funded by the Ontario Early Researcher Award program, SSHRC, MITACS, the University of Waterloo, the University of Toronto, the Stratford Festival, the Renaissance Society of America, and the Canada Council for the Arts. Jennifer’s book, Shakespeare’s Language in Digital Media, co-edited with Janelle Jenstad and Mark Kaethler, will be released by Routledge early in 2018.
Lindsay Gibson
History Education Knowledge Cluster Co-Lead
Lindsay Gibson is an Assistant Professor in Social Studies Education in the Department of Elementary Education at the University of Alberta where his research focuses on historical thinking, and other aspects of teaching, learning, and assessing history. He taught secondary school history and social studies for ten years in School District No. 23 (Kelowna, British Columbia), and from 2012-2015 worked as a teacher on the district Instructional Leadership Team that was awarded the Canadian Education Association’s 2015 Canadian Innovators in Education Award. Lindsay has worked with both the Historical Thinking Project and The Critical Thinking Consortium (TC2) since 2008. Lindsay has been a member of the BC Ministry of Education Writing Team that drafted the redesigned K-12 Social Studies Curriculum since 2012, and is also part of the Working Group that is currently designing the new K-12 social studies curriculum in Alberta.
Carla Peck
History Education Knowledge Cluster Co-Lead
Carla L. Peck is Associate Professor of Social Studies Education in the Department of Elementary Education at the University of Alberta. Her research interests include students’ understandings of democratic concepts, diversity, identity, citizenship and the relationship between students’ ethnic identities and their understandings of history. She has held several major research grants and has published numerous journal articles, book chapters, and practitioner-oriented articles related to this work.

Advisory Group

Lennart Nacke
Creative Team
Lennart Nacke's work is located within the information and communication technologies, design, psychology and human-computer interaction space, but also ties closely into the areas of human health and wellness. He uses biotechnology (namely, physiological sensors) and much of his research is located in the field of user research, where he is focused on evaluating physiological signals elicited by humans when playing games. Games provide moments of high stress as well as high engagement; he is interested in finding and evaluating these critical moments of human emotion. Psychophysiological analysis and physiological sensors allow us to track player sentiments to gauge engagement, cognition, and player emotions. When we understand human emotions and human cognition in these critical gameplay situations, we can make inferences about human information processing in more general setting as well. Professor Nacke's research in human-computer interaction in games has also led to finding novel sensors and interaction paradigms that drive how we interact with computers in a meaningful and engaging way.
Gerald Voorhees
Creative Team
Gerald Voorhees earned a Ph.D. from The University of Iowa (2008) and holds a B.S. in Speech Communication from the University of Texas at Austin, where he was a Senior Fellow in the Honors Program of the College of Communication. His research focuses on games and new media as sites for the construction and contestation of identity and culture. He is also interested in public discourse pertaining to games and new media, as well as rhetorics of race and ethnicity in mediated public discourse. Gerald is co-editor of Continuum’s Approaches to Game Studies book series, a member of the Executive Board of the Digital Games Research Association, and a former co-chair of the Game Studies area of the Popular Culture Association/American Culture Association Nation Conference. Prior to joining the University of Waterloo in Fall, 2013 Gerald taught at Oregon State University and created the Game and Interactive Media Design track for the Communication B.A. at High Point University in North Carolina, USA. He has taught theory, criticism and practice classes in media studies, rhetorical studies, and game studies.
Dean Smith
African NS Culture Knowledge Cluster
W. Dean Smith has been employed as legal counsel with the Federal Department of Justice since 2002. Prior to joining the Federal Public Service, Dean served as legal counsel to the Provincial Department of Justice. He has litigated civil matters on behalf of the Attorneys General before the Federal Court of Appeal, the Courts of Appeal for Nova Scotia, Prince Edward Island and Newfoundland and Labrador and before various administrative tribunals. In 2016, Dean was appointed Commissioner to the Nova Scotia Home for Colored Children Restorative Public Inquiry. Dean serves as vice-chair of the Delmore Buddy Daye Learning Institute, member of the Dr. P. Anthony Johnstone Scholarship Committee for human rights and member of the Black Ice Hockey and Sports Hall of Fame Society. He is co-writer and narrator of the audio presentation Africville: Not For Sale. Dean volunteers as a certified hockey instructor with the Black Youth Ice Hockey Initiative, the Bauer First Shift Program and the Chebucto Minor Hockey Association. Dean hails from Whitney Pier, Cape Breton, but has lived and worked in Halifax since 1985.
Bronwen Low
Oral History Knowledge Cluster
Bronwen Low is an associate professor in the Department of Integrated Studies in Education in McGill University’s Faculty of Education. Her research interests include the implications and challenges of popular youth culture for curriculum theory, literacy studies, and pedagogy; community-media projects and pedagogies; translanguaging and the multilingual Montreal hip-hop scene; and the pedagogical implications of the life stories of Montrealers who have survived genocide and other human rights violations. Her books include Slam school: Learning through conflict in the hip-hop and spoken word classroom (Stanford UP, 2011), and most recently Community-based Media Pedagogies: Listening in the Commons (2017), with Chloe Brushwood Rose and Paula Salvio.
Nicholas Ng-A-Fook
Oral History Knowledge Cluster
Dr. Ng-A-Fook is Director of the Teacher Education Program at the University of Ottawa. He is committed toward addressing the 94 Calls to Action put forth by the Truth and Reconciliation Commission in partnership with the local Indigenous and school board communities. Dr. Ng-A-Fook’s research specializes in life writing research within the fields of curriculum studies and history of education. He has published several books and articles in journals like theMcGill Journal of Education, Canadian Journal of Education, and Our Schools, Our Selves. His recently published a co-edited collection with Dr. Kristina Llewellyn titled, Oral History and Education: Theories, Dilemmas, and Practices.
Amy Hunt
Restorative Learning Knowledge Cluster
Amy is the VP at St. Joseph’s A. McKay School in North End Halifax. She has over ten years of classroom teaching experience and has helped to facilitate the Restorative Approaches in Schools Project in Nova Scotia. In 2014, Amy received the Cynthia Chambers’ Master’s Thesis Award from the Canadian Association of Curriculum Studies for her thesis entitled: “Relational Theory and Critical Race Theory as Social Practice in School: The Restorative Approach”. She is a Doctorate of Education candidate at the University of Glasgow, and teaches “Restorative Approaches in Education” at Mount Saint Vincent University.​
Richard Derible
Restorative Learning Knowledge Cluster
Richard Derible is a School Administration Supervisor with the Halifax Regional School Board. Previously Richard worked with the Nova Scotia Departments of Justice and Education & Early Childhood Development where he led the Restorative Approach in Schools Project. Before joining the HRSB, Richard worked for the Special Projects Division of the Nova Scotia Department of Community Services where he developed outdoor programs for children with special needs and at-risk youth.
Alan Sears
History Education Knowledge Cluster
Alan Sears’s scholarship focuses on the intersection of several fields: citizenship education, history education, and the history of education. His most recent book, an international collaboration with authors from around the world, Education, Globalization and the Nation (Palgrave) was published in 2016. He is currently editor of the journal Citizenship Teaching and Learning.

Creative Team

Bill Chesney
VR Spatial Designer
Bill Chesney has worked in the professional theatre as a set and costume designer and scenic artist for more than thirty years. Recent work includes set and costume designs for Lost & Found Theatre, Kitchener; Lighthouse Theatre Festival in Port Dover; Victoria Playhouse Petrolia; as well as a 20+ year creative association with the Manitoba Theatre for Young People (MTYP) in Winnipeg. A highlight of his work with MTYP is Comet in Moominland, based on the children’s classic by renowned author/illustrator Tove Jansson. A master scenic artist, Bill was the Head Scenic Painter for the Pantages Theatre and touring Canadian productions of The Phantom of the Opera and designed and executed an interior mural entitled Change is Gradual for the Guelph Community Health Centre. Bill has been the Associate Dean, Undergraduate Studies in the Faculty of Arts since 2007.
Paul Ceygs
VR Video and Lighting Designer
Paul Cegys' work merges multiple practices of performance creation and design, from theatre and opera to site specific installation and digital and intermedial scenographies. He has worked abroad in the United States, India, Sweden, Denmark, Belgium, and Poland, and for such theatre companies as La Monnaie/De Munt (Royal Belgan Opera), Canadian Stage Company, Soulpepper Theatre Company, Opera Hamilton, and Theatre Aquarius. He is a member of Paracosm and Ögonblick Design Collectives. In addition, Paul Cegys has designed the lighting for numerous events, video installations & projections for clients including the Canadian Clay and Glass Museum, Glimmerglass Opera Festival, National Academy Orchestra, Hamilton Philharmonic Orchestra, Hamilton Conservatory of Music, and Hamilton Ballet Ensemble. Paul’s research interests focus on sustainable practices in the performing arts, and the intersection of light and projection in contemporary performance practices. He currently teaches at the University of Waterloo in the Department of Drama and Speech Communication. He has taught courses in theatre design and scenography, virtual theatre and new media, technical production and stage management. Additionally, Paul Cegys has also lectured and taught at the University of Toronto, Laurier University, Soulpepper Outreach Program, Theatre Aquarius Performing Arts Program, American Embassy School (Delhi) and Kerala Kalamandalam Kathakali School (India). He holds a MSc in Sustainability Science and Environmental Studies from Lund University in Sweden, and a BA in Drama from the University of Toronto.
Robert Plowman
VR Narrative Experience Designer, Story Advisor, Non-narrative Text Writer
Robert Plowman is a playwright, dramaturge, and teacher. His work has been presented across the United States and Canada. Robert’s play Radium City is published in the New Canadian Drama anthology series, and his critical writing about the development of that show appears in Theatre Research in Canada and Critical Perspective on Canadian Theatre in English. The Missing Link appears in the Fall 2014 issue of Southern Theatre. Much of Robert’s work as a theatre artist has sprung from collaborative relationships with devising ensembles or individual intermedia artists, and it has been marked by diverse approaches to both form (with performances ranging from found object puppetry to audio installation to walking tour) and process (writing in response to a piece of choreography, or to geography, or to interview transcripts). His plays has been developed with the support of the MacDowell Colony, the Millay Colony for the Arts, the Playwrights Theatre Centre Writers’ Colony, the Djerassi Resident Artists Program, and the Great Plains Theatre Conference. He is the winner of the 2014 Getchell New Play Award and the 2014 Association for Theatre in Higher Education Award of Excellence. He holds an MFA in Playwriting as a member of the Playwright’s Lab at Hollins University. Robert has taught playwriting to introductory and advanced students, most recently at Dalhousie University.
Colin Labadie
VR Sound Designer
Colin Labadie is a composer, performer, sound designer, and educator. As a composer, Colin writes notably un-classical music for classical instruments. Through simple patterning and subtle variation, he seeks to build intricate yet clear structures and sounds. As a performer, he does exactly the opposite; he creates noisy and chaotic textures, usually with mutant guitars or homemade circuits. He often roots around in thrift stores, hunting for odd sounds in the world of forgotten electronics. Somewhere between these two extremes lies his work as a sound designer. He has spent countless hours in darkened sound booths crafting soundscapes for productions of numerous theatrical works. Colin holds a Doctoral Degree in Music from the University of Alberta. He currently lives in Kitchener, and teaches music composition at Wilfrid Laurier University.
Arda Kizilcay
VR Technical Designer
Arda Kizilcay is a recent graduate from the University of Waterloo with a degree in Liberal Arts and Digital Arts Communications. He is an aspiring designer with professional experience in graphic design, 3D modelling, videography and game design. His focus is in the practical design elements found in digital media. He aspires to specialize in the process of bringing conceptual designs into reality — In other words, the creation and implementation of designs. He is currently working as a Resident Game Designer with Lennart Nacke at the HCI Games group under the University of Waterloo. He will have a wide range of responsibilities in the DOHR VR Project, with a focus on implementation strategy and prototyping.
Gerd Schmidt
Gerd Schmidt is a Masters student from the University of Magdeburg in Germany. He is studying computer science (specifically computational visualistics) and focuses on realtime applications, visualization and AR/VR development. In previous medical research projects such as “EmoAdapt", he developed VR applications used in MRI scans. He is currently working as a research assistant at STIMULATE where he develops medical technology applications. At Waterloo, Gerd is a member of the HCI Games Group led by Dr. Lennart Nacke. For the DOHR project, he is focusing on VR implementations.

Research Support

Tony Tin
Tony Tin is the Director of Library and Information Services at University of Waterloo’s Renison University College Library. Tony had coordinated many mobile learning projects which have won the International E-Learning Association’s E-learning Award 2012. His Mobile Library project received the Canadian Library Association Library Research and Develop Grant Award in 2006. He is the technical leader for the Mobile Academic Integrity project which is funded by the eCampus Ontario Innovation and Research Grant.He attained his Master of Library and Information Sciences degree from the University of Alberta, a Master of Arts and a Bachelor of Arts degrees from McGill University and a Bachelor of Education from the University of Alberta. He has published articles and book chapters and presented at conferences on topics such as library technology, information literacy, and mobile libraries.
David Annable
Having celebrated his 12 year anniversary as the head of IT at Renison, David has spent his career paying attention to the tools and solutions needed to teach, study, and research in the world of post-secondary education. His training is in network engineering and software development, with a focus on security, systems integration, and project management. He has spent more than 25 years engaged in technology industry both from an enterprise and a consumer perspective. He was born and raised in Niagara’s wine country and currently lives in Waterloo with his wife and son.
Kai Butterfield
Kai Butterfield is a Peace and Conflict Studies student in her 2B term at the University of Waterloo. In secondary school, she began studying the impact of institutional racism in the Canadian education system on marginalized students. She intends to address aspects of this structural violence through the development of inclusive curriculum that reflects the diverse history and experiences of Black Canadians.
Stephanie Lin
Stephanie Lin is a third year Computer Science and Fine Arts student at the University of Waterloo. She is a UI/UX developer and designer and assisted in the building and design of the DOHR website.
Dan Lee
Dan is a Computer Science student in his 3A term at the University of Waterloo. Through his personal projects and interests in Web Development, Dan contributed his skills and further developed his passion in the field through this website.
Felicia Lartey
Felicia Lartey is a History and Sociology student going into her fourth year at Laurentian University. She has always been interested in African-American/Canadian studies mainly focusing on the civil rights movement period. After her undergrad, she would like to pursue her Masters degree in African-American Studies at Howard University and eventually her PhD as well to become a History professor.
Mahir Hoque

Mahir Hoque is a fourth year student at the University of Waterloo, studying in Fine Arts, Computer Science and Digital Arts Communication. He was involved in the design and maintenance of this website.

Kate Charette
Kate Charette is a K-12 educator and researcher, and is a Ph.D. candidate at the University of New Brunswick's Faculty of Education. Her research interests include historical thinking, elementary social studies, teacher professional learning, imaginative education, and educational resource development.