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2023 Ray Smith Symposium – “Rematriating Well-Being: Indigenous Foodways, Sovereignty, and Sowing Seeds of Hope for Tomorrow”

April 7, 2023 at 9:00am4:00pm EDT

Lyman Hall, 132 and Virtual (See event details)

This event has already occurred. The information may no longer be valid.

The symposium was organized by Dr. Mariaelena Huambachano and was made possible with generous support from the College of Arts and Sciences. Other sponsors include the Syracuse University Humanities Center, the Center for Global Indigenous Cultures and Environmental Justice, the Departments of Religion, Geography, Women’s and Gender Studies, and Food Studies, the Native American and Indigenous Studies Program, the Native Student Program, the Program on Latin America and the Caribbean, and the Engaged Humanities Network.

Lectures and panel discussion from internationally renowned Indigenous knowledge keepers and catered Indigenous foods luncheon. OPEN TO THE PUBLIC – REGISTRATION REQUIRED.

In-person attendance limited to first 100 registrants. Remote attendance via Zoom is open to all, though registration is required for access to the Zoom event link.


Tarcila Rivera Zea [Quechua-Chanka]

With a trajectory of more than 40 years, from her association CHIRAPAQ and other international spaces, Rivera Zea contributes to the vindication of ancestral cultures, the training of Indigenous leaders and the fight against all forms of violence. Likewise, she promotes the coordination of organizational processes and the strengthening of the Indigenous women’s movement from the local to the global level. She was a member of the Global Advisory Committee of the Civil Society of UN Women and was an expert member of the UN Permanent Forum on Indigenous Issues for the period 2017 – 2019.

Dr. Jessica Hutchings [Ngāi Tahu, Ngāti Huirapa, Gujarati]

Nationally and internationally recognised as a leader in Indigenous food systems and Māori food and soil sovereignty, Dr. Hutchings is a founding Trustee of the Papawhakaritorito Charitable Trust that works to uplift Māori kai and soil sovereignty and Hua Parakore through research, development and community practice. Dr Hutchings has been working at the crossroads of Indigenous knowledge, whānau and environmental wellbeing for the last three decades and is passionate about Indigenous social justice and self-determination.

Angela Ferguson [Onondaga]

Angela grew up on the Tuscarora Nation territories in western New York, where she learned about the care and preparation of traditional foods. Today Ferguson is the Supervisor of the Onondaga Nation Farm. Her many passions include Haudenosaunee Traditional Agriculture, Seed Caring, Traditional Cooking Methods, Knowledge Sharing, Youth Mentorship, & Traditional Hide Tanning. She travels across the Turtle Island (North America) to expand her knowledge about Indigenous heritage seeds and food preparation as one of the founding coordinators of Braiding the Sacred, an Indigenous network of corn growers across Turtle Island.


  • 10am: Welcome remarks by Dr Mariaelena Huambachano
  • 10:30am: Each speaker has one hour (45 minutes and 15 minutes for Q&A)
  • Angie Ferguson: The Role of the Haudenosaunee women in Agriculture and Traditional Economies
  • Jessica Hutchings: Kai Atua: Restoring hope and wellbeing to Māori food systems
  • Tarcila Rivera Zea: The role of Indigenous Women in promoting biodiversity and collective rights of Nature
  • 1:30pm: Delicious Indigenous Lunch and time to mingle.
  • 2:30 pm to 4pm: Talking Circle Discussion moderated by Dr Mariaelena Huambachano In this talking circle we’ll expand on topics of agroecology, rematriating well-being, Indigenous leadership, food systems, food security and decolonizing methodologies.
  • Q&A from the audience.

This event was first published on March 13, 2023 and last updated on April 5, 2023.

Event Details