Actions Panel



By Death Doula Network International

When and where

Date and time

Thu, Aug 10, 2023 7:45 AM - 8:00 PM PDT


Tsawwassen Springs 5133 Springs Boulevard Delta, BC V4M 0A6 Canada

Refund Policy

No Refunds


7:45 AM

Continental Breakfast

Take some time to enjoy a nourishing continental breakfast and settle in with your fellow delegates for an exciting day!

8:30 AM

Welcome & Opening Ceremony

9:00 AM

Key Note Panel

Key Note Panel Discussion Moderated by Christa Ovenell The Panel: Barbara Karnes, RN Dr. Karen Wyatt, End of Life University Jennifer O'Brien, Hospice Dr's Widow Lisa Pahl, Hospice Social Worker and ...

10:15 AM

Break Out Presentations

Participate in the first of 4 small group presentations lead by each of our Guest Speakers

11:30 AM

Lunch - Have a bite, sit on the patio, enjoy the scenery, go for a walk

12:30 PM

3 Break Out Presentations

Participate in 3 more small group presentations lead by each of our Guest Speakers. The afternoon will also include coffee and stretch breaks

4:30 PM

Closing Ceremony & Ritual

Join together with the full community to participate in our closing ceremony and ritual - extending gratitude and appreciation for the day

5:00 PM - 8:00 PM

Mix & Mingle Cocktail Reception - Time to Relax


About this event

  • 12 hours 15 minutes
  • Mobile eTicket

Seriously, Let's Talk - Changing our Conversations About Death

A Full Day IN-PERSON Conference with an Evening Reception, presenting

Five International Speakers who are changing the conversation on death and dying:

Barbara Karnes, RN

Dr. Karen Wyatt, End of Life University

Jennifer O'Brien, MSOD & Hospice Dr's Widow

Lisa Pahl, LCSW, Hospice & Medical Emergency Social Worker & Co-Creator of The Death Deck

Lori LoCicero, Freelance Writer & Co-Creator of The Death Deck

We are honoured to have Christa Ovenell, Death's Apprentice as our host EmCee and Panel Moderator for the day!

This day will provide opportunities to learn about new approaches to how we engage and the conversations we have with patients, families, caregivers, doctors, and others on the healthcare team.

Conversations that alleviate fear and allow for personal agency, advocacy, and active engagement in goals for care, advance care planning, and decisions that need to be made for the end of life.

What You Get:

  • TOTAL OF 7 hours of IN-PERSON education and learning
  • TOTAL OF 5 Impactful and informative Sessions focused on how we can collectively change the conversations about death
  • TOTAL OF 4 intimate Breakout Presentations where you can talk 1 on 1 with the speakers
  • TOTAL OF 2 MEALS - Continental Breakfast, Lunch, plus refreshment breaks
  • 1 Mix and Mingle Cocktail Reception
  • Many opportunities to be up close and personal with the speakers
  • Welcome Swag Bag

Who Should Attend:

  • anyone working in end-of-life care
  • medical professionals
  • death (eol) doulas
  • others in the deathcaring industry, either pre or post death
  • grief and loss support professionals

Keynote Panel Discussion - Our speakers share their perspectives and insights on:

  • WHY we are so uncomfortable with discussing death
  • BARRIERS this creates for us at diagnosis or end of life
  • WHY we need to change our language and conversations
  • HOW we do it

Breakout Presentations - Intimate Group Breakout Presentations, with opportunity to be "in conversation" with the Speakers.

  • Seriously, Let's Talk about Death with Clients, Patients and the People Who Love Them - with Lisa Pahl & Lori LoCicero
  • Seriously, Let's Talk to Physicians and Medical Professionals Effectively about Death and Dying with Dr. Karen Wyatt
  • Seriously, Let's Talk to and Team Up with Family Caregivers - with Jennifer O'Brien
  • Seriously, Let's Talk about You, Your Sense of Purpose, and Your Selfcare - with Barbara Karnes

Mix & Mingle Cocktail Reception - close the day with an informal reception

  • relax and enjoy the company of all the delegates
  • have an informal and personal chat with the speakers
  • enjoy chef prepared canapes and appetizers made with local fresh ingredients
  • step out on the patio and enjoy the breathtaking scenery of Tsawwassen Springs, and the North Shore Mountain views
  • make new friends, colleagues and maybe even future collaborators

THE LOCATION: Tsawwassen Springs is located in the beautiful community of Tsawwassen, BC, ancestral lands of the Tsawwassen First Nations

"Tsawwassen means “Land facing the sea” in our language, hən̓q̓əmin̓əm̓. We are also known as the Salmon People, as our traditions are deeply rooted to fishing and canoeing."


  • we have arranged for discounted accommodations at the Coast Tsawwassen Inn. Book before July 9th and save! You will receive our group booking link and a promo code once you complete your registration for the event.
  • check out the many other attractions in the area
  • This tree-lined seaside neighbourhood attracts locals and visitors to Centennial Beach on Boundary Bay, popular for both family outings and for windsurfing. Boundary Bay Regional Park draws birdwatchers and cyclists to its marshes and scenic trails. The area also features Big Splash Water Slide Park, and the sprawling Tsawwassen Mills shopping centre.

We have intentionally created the opportunity for you to personally connect with our international speakers and the other delegates who are attending, so REGISTRATION IS LIMITED.

DDNI MEMBERS: $265 with promo code


Your Hosts & Educators:

Jo-Anne Haun, End of Life Alternatives & Karen Hendrickson, Take the Journey


About Barbara Karnes, RN, BK BOOKS

Award Winning End of Life Educator, Award Winning Nurse, NHPCO Hospice Innovator Award Winner 2018 & 2015 International Humanitarian Woman of the Year. Barbara Karnes, RN, is an internationally respected speaker, educator, author, and thought leader on matters of end of life. She is a renowned authority on the dying process and a leading educator for families, healthcare professionals, and the community at large. Barbara's award winning DVDs and books about death and dying are changing lives - in this country and around the world. In her work, Barbara compassionately explains stages of the dying process, living with a life threatening illness, pain management, and how people grieve. She explains how important it is to take care of yourself as a caregiver and offers guidelines for professionals. Barbara has held both clinical and leadership positions, including staff nurse, clinical supervisor, and executive director at Hospices and Home Health Care agencies. Since 1994, Barbara has traveled speaking about end of life issues and the stages of dying at national and state hospice and palliative care organization conferences, state associations, colleges, nursing schools, hospitals, and hospices. She is the expert that hospice and other healthcare professionals count on to teach them how to explain the dying process to families. Barbara has dedicated the last 40 years of her life to the education, care, and support of dying people and their loved ones. The most useful and important things that she's learned along the way have been distilled into her materials.

About Dr. Karen Wyatt, End of Life University

Dr. Karen Wyatt is the bestselling author of the book 7 Lessons for Living from the Dying, which contains stories of patients she cared for as a hospice doctor and the spiritual lessons she learned from them at the end of their lives.

Dr. Wyatt also hosts End-of-Life University Podcast, which features conversations with experts who work in all aspects of end-of-life care. She is widely regarded as a thought-leader in the effort to transform the way we care for our dying in the U.S. In addition, she is valued for her application of spiritual principles to illness and healthcare and teaches that in order to live life fully we must each overcome our fear of death and embrace the difficulties that life brings us.



Twitter: @spiritualmd


About Jennifer O'Brien, MSOD & Hospice Dr's Widow

Jennifer O’Brien helps people talk about caregiving and end of life. She encourages compassionate, real conversation through her book, The Hospice Doctor’s Widow: A Journal, where she shares her story of caregiving through collages and writings. After years of caring for people with serious illness as a physician, Jennifer’s husband, Bob Lehmberg, was diagnosed with a stage IV, metastatic cancer. But caregiving for the man who had made a 40-year career of caregiving as a physician was not easy. When Jennifer’s husband was diagnosed and later after he died, she turned to what had brought her comfort for years—art journaling. She documented and depicted the raw, honest, beautiful and exhausting reality of caregiving through collage, tableaus, notes and observations. She included much of the wisdom and perspective she learned from her husband in his years as a physician. When the book was just a stack of pages, she took it to a friend who had just been diagnosed with a rare, advanced bladder cancer. After reading the book and knowing his own prognosis, he said, “You need to give this to my wife. She needs to understand what is ahead and feel supported as my caregiver.” After seeing how much that stack of pages helped them in his final months, Jennifer knew that what she had created might help others. Having been a practice management consultant and educator to physicians for 30+ years, an executive administrator for two large medical practices, in administration at three major academic medical centers, the wife and now widow of a physician, Jennifer has a unique and thorough understanding of healthcare. Still, with all of this experience, caregiving for her dying husband was both the greatest honor and challenge of her life.

Now Jennifer works to help caregivers feel supported while caring for others and taking care of themselves.

About Lisa Pahl, LCSW, Hospice and Medical Emergency Social Worker, Co-Creator of The Death Deck

As a Licensed Clinical Social Worker with over fifteen years of experience in hospice and emergency medicine, Lisa helps people cope with illness, dying, and grief. With a passionate belief that peace at the end begins with meaningful conversations over time, Lisa engages people in talking about and preparing for this important stage of life. She feels the more we can engage in talking about this difficult subject, the more prepared and ultimately comforted we will be when we reach the end of life. When friends say, “Lisa, how is it that every time you are around we talk about death?” She takes it as the ultimate compliment. It’s her passion, and she's honored to be able to open up these conversations and put people at ease. Since obtaining her Master’s in Social Work from The University of Michigan, she's embraced a challenging and rewarding social work career. She has worked within community mental health, domestic violence, and trauma before moving to Emergency Medicine and Hospice, where her true passion lies. Accompanying Individuals and their families through their final days has taught her innumerable lessons about truly appreciating life.

About Lori LoCicero, Freelance Writer and Co-Creator of The Death Deck

Lori LoCicero is a freelance writer and co-creator of The Death Deck. A creative storyteller and eternal optimist, Lori combines her personal stories of loss with her innate sense of humor to write about life and talk about death.

Her experience with hospice and the death of her husband Joe to pancreatic cancer was the catalyst for creating The Death Deck: a lively and humorous card game that inspires meaningful conversations on what matters most.

UCLA graduate with a long list of titles including director, producer, and author, She is currently completing a memoir about personal loss (Clouds Far Behind Me) and shares personal stories about grief and widowhood on her website ( to help others travel their paths.

A believer in Post-Traumatic Growth (PTG), she seeks to shed light on this emerging field of psychology and plant seeds of hope in others when in darkness. She also has a wicked sense of humor—which helps in balancing all of life’s many challenges.

About Christa Ovenell, Death's Apprentice

Christa Ovenell is a licensed funeral director, an end-of-life doula, and the founder of Death’s Apprentice Education & Planning. She holds a Master's degree in Higher Education from the University of British Columbia and is proud to have been featured in local and national press in her quest to talk all about the one thing most people don't feel comfortable talking about at all! You can find her via her website (, on Instagram (, or in various bodies of water as she indulges in her favourite new pastime: cold plunging!

About the organizer

The Death Doula Network International is an active membership organization committed and passionate about death education, creating and expanding our human connections, while we all get comfortable with the uncomfortable. Together we will learn how to lead the courageous, and necessary conversations around death, dying and the importance of end of life planning.

You will experience the power of exploring your mortality, and the positive impact this will have on your life, and the ones you love right NOW!

Let's explore all of it TOGETHER!