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The Victoria Forum 2024
The Victoria Forum 2024 - Bridging Divides: Turf, Trust and Truth

Sharmarke Dubow is the first Black City Councilor in Victoria in more than 150 years and a United Nations Human Rights Fellow. Sharmarke strongly believes that City leaders ought to focus not only on service delivery, but on efforts that create a sense of participation and belonging, to the benefit of all community members. Sharmarke sits on various regional service and civic committees. Outside of his city duties, he is a board member of Broadbent Institute, Climate Caucus and the Vancouver Island Human Rights.

He is a long time former board member of the Canadian Council for Refugees and has previously worked at both the Inter-Cultural Association of Greater Victoria and the Victoria Immigrant Refugee Services Centre.

Sharmarke is an organizer, connector, and an award-winning community leader such as 2020 Top Canadian Immigrant Award, Victoria Community Leadership Award 2017 and this year 2022, he was named ‘noteworthy historical figure’ by Canadian Heritage as part of the federal department’s celebration of Black History Month.

Dubow immigrated to Canada in 2012 and settled in Victoria. Before this, he worked in Egypt with AMERA International, formerly AMERA UK, or Africa and Middle East Refugee Assistance and the Psycho-Social Services and Training Institute in Cairo, including the Center for Migration and Refugee Studies (CMRS) at the American University in Cairo (AUC). For 20+ years, Sharmarke was a refugee himself living with great uncertainty and he brings this perspective to all of his work with the city and the wider community.