K’odi Nelson

Executive Director | Nawalakw | Canada

Hereditary chief, adventure guide, and language and culture teacher K’odi Nelson is the visionary and founder of Nawalakw. Hailing from Alert Bay, British Columbia, K’odi is an internationally renowned cultural steward of the Kwakwaka’wakw. A sought-after dancer and song-keeper who has mastered all the great dances of the Kwakwaka’wakw, he is also an accomplished artist. He designs traditional regalia for Potlatches and commissions. Before founding Nawalakw, K’odi was the lead guide for Sea Wolf Adventures, an indigenous-owned adventure tour operator and was also the Kwakwakwa’wakw cultural leader and language teacher at the Gwa’sala Nakwaxda’xw school. “The first Nations people have endured successive waves of traumatic disruption that have threatened our very existence. My hope and dream are that Nawalakw will serve as a catalyst for social change and become the first place on earth where the Kwak’wala language is again spoken immersively.”