Trauma, Addiction, and Transformation: The Kerry Gladue Story – Keynote Address [2023-11-16]

Kerry will be sharing his inspiring story of addiction and mental health, as well as his upbringing in foster care, and the justice system. As a graduate of the Calgary Drug Treatment Court and Director of Simon House Recovery Centre, Kerry uses his story to share his experience, strength and hope with those that struggle with the same issues. For others to know his story and be able to relate to what he has been through opens up the doorway of hope and a willingness to start trusting and taking risks that are beneficial to their own healing.

Keynote address by Kerry Gladue at the 2023 HSJCC Virtual Conference on November 16, 2023.

Kerry Gladue was born and raised in Edmonton, Alberta. Kerry is an intergenerational survivor of the Residential School system, as well as a survivor of childhood sexual abuse. After spending most of his life in and out of the system, and the death of his mother and sister, Kerry woke up in a jail cell. Broken and alone, he cried out in his cell for a second chance. Kerry arrived in Calgary as a participant in the Calgary Drug Treatment Court Program after being advised he would be spending the next 11 years in prison; he was given a second chance. Now over 11 years clean and sober, Kerry’s dedication and commitment to others has been instrumental in the recovery of almost two thousand clients he has served. Kerry is now Director of Indigenous Relations & Client Services and was also instrumental in the creation of Simon House Recovery Centre’s Indigenous Programming, as well as IFRP (Indigenous Family Reunification Program). Kerry is also a published Author, Actor and dedicates his story and experiences to helping others achieve healing and change.

We want to express our gratitude to Kerry Gladue for delivering an outstanding keynote address on Day 2 of our conference. His powerful story and message were truly inspiring, and we are honoured to have had the opportunity to share them on our channels.

We hope that Kerry’s story will encourage others to share their experiences and stories. We invite everyone to join one of our many provincial committees that support the work of the HSJCC and amplify the voices of individuals with lived experience.

If you want to support Kerry’s work, you can book him for presentations and speaking engagements by contacting Shannon Gladue at You can also show your support by purchasing his book “Second Chances: The Kerry Gladue Story” through this link:

Kerry’s Book – Second Chances:

Naushaba Degani
Chief, Quality and System Performance Officer
Canadian Mental Health Association, Ontario

Trauma, Addiction, and Transformation: The Kerry Gladue Story – 2023-11-16 – YouTube