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Artist & Author


McNally Robinson Booksellers and Caitlin Press are pleased to present Susan Blacklin speaking and signing.  

Join Susan Blacklin for the Winnipeg launch of Water Confidential: Witnessing Justice Denied-The Fight for Safe Drinking Water hosted by Zilla Jones

Friday May 24, 7:00 pm

Grant Park in the Atrium

McNally Robinson Bookstore

4000-1120 Grant Ave, Winnipeg

Streaming on YouTube

Hosted by Zilla Jones


Join us for an evening with Susan Blacklin, author of Water Confidential: Witnessing Justice Denied-The Fight for Safe Drinking Water (Caitlin Press). Featuring a conversation hosted by Zilla Jones. All royalties from Susan's memoir will be donated equally to The Safe Drinking Water Foundation and Keepers of the Water.


The event will be hosted live in the Atrium of McNally Robinson Booksellers, Grant Park and also available as a simultaneous YouTube stream.


In Water Confidential, Susan Blacklin recounts her decades-long dedication alongside her late ex-husband, Dr. Hans Peterson, to secure safe drinking water for First Nations and rural communities in Canada. Beginning with Peterson's pioneering research in 1996, they established the Safe Drinking Water Foundation (SDWF), developing innovative water treatment technology and educational programs. Despite progress, many communities still lack access to safe water. Blacklin advocates for federal regulations and transparent science-based policies to address the ongoing crisis. In this timely memoir, Blacklin reflects on her fundraising, activism, and negotiations with governments, while underscoring the urgent need for equitable access to clean water.


“Dr. Hans Peterson was an ally to the nation. Our message to other First Nations Leaders is to search for those allies, not just consultants, but experts that care because they will go the distance for your people. Our message to Canadians is to be those allies because if First Nations communities thrive, so does Canada." —Chief John Machiskinic, Yellow Quill First Nation


“That Hans and Sue had to undertake what they did is an indictment of Canada’s attitude to Indigenous communities, even when it comes to basic human rights.” —Dr. John O’Connor, family physician, and health advocate, Northern Alberta


Susan Blacklin was born near London, UK, and later moved to Canada. She supported her late ex-husband, Dr. Hans Peterson, in founding the Safe Drinking Water Foundation; they devoted fifteen years of their lives to bringing safe drinking water to First Nations and rural communities. 


Host Zilla Jones is an African-Canadian woman writing on Treaty 1 territory (Winnipeg.) In 2023, she was a Journey Prize winner and a finalist in the Writers Trust Bronwen Wallace award. In 2024, she was shortlisted in the CBC short fiction contest and is currently a finalist for a National Magazine award in fiction. She has also won the Malahat Review Open Season award, the Jacob Zilber short fiction prize, the Freefall short fiction award and the GritLit short story award, placed second in the Prairie Fire short fiction prize and the Austin Clarke prize and won Honourable Mention in the Room magazine short story prize.

Her short stories appear in Prairie Fire, The Malahat Review, Prism International, The Fiddlehead, Freefall Magazine, the Ex-Puritan, Room Magazine, Bayou Magazine, The Journey Prize Stories, and anthologies of Nottingham Writers Studio and the Federation of BC Writers. Her debut novel, The World So Wide, and a short fiction collection, So Much To Tell, are forthcoming with Cormorant Books in 2025 and 2026.


Zilla is interested in themes of social justice, and she writes about race, identity, migration, inter-generational trauma, policing, and the climate crisis.

Expertise and Passion

Susan Blacklin is not only an author, but also an advocate for Indigenous rights. Her passion for this issue shines through in her paintings and writing, which is both informative and deeply moving.

Extensive Research

Susan's work is based on extensive research and firsthand experience. With her late husband, Dr. Hans Peterson, Susan has traveled across Canada to meet with Indigenous communities and learn about their struggles and triumphs.

Engaging Writing Style

Susan's writing is accessible and engaging, making complex issues easy to understand and compelling to read.

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