NSI New Northern Voices Faculty

Associate faculty (2021)

Jordan Wheeler, Writer


From the George Gordon First Nation, Jordan’s been writing professionally since 1982 and working in film and television since 1984.

Among his numerous writing credits are the books Digital OgichidaBrothers In Arms and Just A Walk and as a scriptwriter and story editor the TV series Arctic Airrenegadepress.com and North of 60.

Jordan has been nominated for and won numerous awards including a scriptwriting Gemini in 2006 for an episode of renegadepress.com.

When not writing he teaches writing, scriptwriting, story edits, tells stories and plays golf. Born in Victoria in 1964, Jordan has two kids and three step kids. He lives in Winnipeg with his wife Kim.


Ursula Lawson, Manager

Ursula Lawson

Ursula has been with NSI since 2004 and is a manager of programs and development. She is currently working on virtual training initiatives including NSI Business for Producers, NSI New Northern Voices and the NSI/FTM Manitoba Content Creators Development Accelerator. She also oversees the mentorship, development and delivery of projects for TELUS STORYHIVE.

In 2013 Ursula was honoured to receive the YMCA-YWCA Women of Distinction Circle of Inspiration Award along with colleagues Lisa Meeches and Melissa Kajpust for their contribution to CBC New Indigenous Voices. In 2019, Ursula was nominated for the Winnipeg Arts Council Making a Difference award which celebrates contributions to the growth and development of the arts in Winnipeg.

Instrumental in helping NSI develop and deliver culturally sensitive film and television training to emerging Indigenous content creators, Ursula previously managed CBC New Indigenous Voices, NSI IndigiDocs and NSI Aboriginal Journalism. She also coordinated NSI Global MarketingNSI Totally Television, NSI Aboriginal Cultural Trade Initiative and NSI Pitch to Win! Ursula is also secretary of the NSI Board of Directors.

Sarah Simpson-Yellowquill, Coordinator


Sarah has extensive filmmaking experience, is dedicated to her craft and has made multiple short films which have screened at Canadian festivals. Sarah also works with youth teaching film and creating stories. In her spare time she works as a production manager and producer with local film companies.

Sarah wears many hats. Prior to working with NSI she worked in film, healthcare, childcare and social media.

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NSI New Northern Voices 2021 is funded by NSI Indigenous Training Programs Partner Directors Guild of Canada (DGC); Strategic Sponsor Telefilm Canada; Supporting Sponsors Stantec, RBC Emerging Artists Project, TELUS Manitoba Community Board and Super Channel; Provincial Sponsor Manitoba Film & Music; Industry Supporters Final Draft and Native Communications Inc. NSI Core Funders are Manitoba Sport, Culture & Heritage and the City of Winnipeg through the Winnipeg Arts Council. More sponsors will be announced as confirmed.

NSI New Northern Voices is the direct result of the NSI feasibility study and framework for northern training, supported by Manitoba Sport, Culture and Heritage, The Winnipeg Foundation and Manitoba Film & Music.