kateri akiwenzie-damm is an Anishnaabe writer of mixedblood from the
Chippewas of Nawash First Nation. She has lived and worked at
Neyaashiinigmiing, Cape Croker Reserve on the Saugeen Peninsula in
southwestern Ontario since 1994. "I know I belong here and regardless of
where else I might live, this will always be my home. This is where I live
and write and remember who I am," she says.
When kateri is not writing she keeps busy with her consulting company
DammWrite! Consulting and Communications, working with First Nations
groups and projects. She is also the Managing Editor of Kegedonce Press, a
small publishing company she set up in 1993 to publish and promote the work
of Indigenous writers, artists and others in the publishing field. In 1999
Kegedonce released looking into the eyes of my forgotten dreams by Joseph
A. Dandurand In 1999 she
established NiSHin Productions, an Indigenous performing arts production
company. In 2000, kateri, through NiSHin Productions tour coordinated and
tour managed national tours of Aotearoa for two Native theatre companies
from Canada. Later in the year NiSHin Productions co-produced the
Canadian tour of Purapurawhetu, a play by acclaimed Maori writer
, with Taki Rua
Productions of Wellington, New Zealand.
In 1996 kateri taught creative writing courses to university students at
the En'owkin International School of Writing in Penticton, British
Columbia. She is currently working on a spoken word CD and a collection of
poetry. kateri is also working on publishing arrangements for an
international collection of erotica by Indigenous writers and artists. She
recently completed work as the editor of a collection of fiction by
Indigenous writers from Canada, the United States, Australia and Aotearoa.
This book has been co-published by Kegedonce Press and Jukurrpa Books, an
imprint of IAD Press an
Aboriginal publisher based in Alice Springs, Australia.
kateri's other interests include tracking with the
Ndakinna Wilderness Project, learning the Anishnaabe language,
studying dreams, and traditional gathering and harvesting.
kateri's writing has been published in various anthologies, journals, and
magazines in Canada, the U.S., Aotearoa, Australia, and Germany. She has
given readings at events and venues across Canada, the U.S., Australia, and
Aotearoa and on national radio in Canada and Aotearoa. Readings have been
broadcast nationally in Canada on WTN. Spoken word pieces of her poetry
have been recorded and distributed on various audio-cassette compilations.
Solo and collaborative pieces of her work have been shown in exhibits at
art galleries in British Columbia. Among the journals in which her work has been
published are trout, a south pacific journal of the arts (see below),
The New Quarterly, Winter
2000, University of Waterloo, and
Rampike Literary & Arts Magazine, (V. 8, No. 2, V. 10 No. 1 and the 20th Anniversary Edition, 1999).
At this time kateri is working on a spoken word CD with a group of Indigenous
collaborators including Te Kupu , Koru,
Joy Harjo, Marcos Arcentales, John
Thorp, Lucho Abanto, Rhys B., and Raven Polson-Lahache. She is also working
on a collection of poetry, a collection of short stories, and publishing
arrangements for a collection of erotica by Indigenous writers and artists.
kateri states, "I am passionate about my work and about Indigenousliterature internationally, particularly First Nations literatures, both
written and spoken, Maori literature, and erotica."
kateri's press, Kegedonce Press, was named Publisher of the Year (outside US) for 2001 by the Wordcraft Circle of Native Writers and Storytellers.
In 1996, kateri was the recipient of a Literary Arts Development Writers Grant from the
Canada Council. In 1998 she received an Ontario Arts Council, Writers' Reserve Grant for a poetry manuscript she is working on.
In 1992, she held a Graduate Studies Research Scholarship at the University of Ottawa.
She held the Lucille Herbert Memorial Scholarship and was a member of the Dean's Honour Roll
at York University.
In addition kateri has been a Board Member of the Native Council of Canada, a Founding
Member/Interim Vice President, Aboriginal Youth Council of Canada, a member of the
Joint National Committee on Aboriginal AIDS Education and Awareness and of the Native Advisory
Council of the Wordcraft Circle of Native Writers Workshop. She has also been a Trustee of
the Chippewas of Nawash First Nation Board of Education, an Interim Board Member of the
National Aboriginal Youth Business Council, a Planning Committee Member of the Aboriginal
Publishers Conference, and an Interim Executive Committee Member of the Circle of Aboriginal