2019 Senior National Finals Hosts & Judges

Meet our 24 Semifinalists!

Buy tickets to the National Finals show on April 25 @ 7pm in Winnipeg or watch the live stream on our website.

Finals Hosts

On April 25 at 7pm, the top 9 finalists will compete for $25,000 in prizes for themselves and their school libraries. Rosanna Deerchild and J.R. Léveillé will be our hosts for the evening.

Rosanna Deerchild is an award-winning author and veteran broadcaster. Her poetry collection this is a small northern town won the 2009 Aqua Books Lansdowne Prize for Poetry. Her second book, calling down the sky, is her mother’s residential school survivor story. She is co-founder and member of the Indigenous Writers Collective of Manitoba and has contributed to numerous Indigenous newspapers. She currently hosts the CBC Radio show, Unreserved, a radio space for Indigenous community, culture, and conversation. A Cree from O-Pipon-Na-Piwan Cree Nation at South Indian Lake in northern Manitoba, Rosanna now lives and works in her found home of the North End of Winnipeg.


Roger Léveillé (b. 1945), a francophone poet and writer from Western Canada, highlights the diversity of the francophone world and the complexity of multiculturalism in his writing. A radio and television journalist at Radio-Canada and director of the “Rouge” collection, which promotes the publication of new authors, Léveillé is considered the leader of new French writing outside of Quebec.


Semifinals Host

On April 24, 24 students in the French, Bilingual, and English Streams will compete for the 9 coveted places at the National Finals. Our host for these events will be Johanne Blais.

Johanne Blais

Johanne Blais is a word maven. She is a trained translator, as well as a professor of writing and grammar, and a public speaker. Perfectly bilingual and a passionate admirer of the languages of both Shakespeare and Molière, Johanne Blais spent 17 years sharing her passion each week with thousands of Canadians as CBC Radio C’est la vie’s “Word Lady,” through her language segment “Word of the Week.” Johanne Blais’s sparkle and humour combine with her gift for explaining words in their individual daily context. She teaches with great warmth and a smile in her voice. Her love for French has also led her to write engaging columns on the breadth and variety of French as it is spoken in Canada. Johanne Blais has been hosting several National Finals since 2013 and also serves on our board.


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