Berend McKenzie (He/She/They Interchangeably) is an award-winning actor, screenwriter, author and playwright living on Turtle Island (otherwise known as Canada). Berend is a survivor of racism, child physical abuse, the AIDS pandemic and drug and alcohol addiction. For years Berend spent their life being whatever others wanted them to be. This allowed them to always be the victim and prevented them from taking ownership of their own life. Berend's quest to find their authentic self began after they got clean and sober 23 years ago and they haven't looked back. The gift of sobriety has allowed them to drop the mask they thought others wanted to see and find the authentic self hidden beneath. It's not always pretty but it's real. Berend's writing has helped them in their process of self-discovery and has helped them own their place in the past to make a better future.