Collette Murray is a dance educator, cultural arts programmer and dance instructor. With a performance background over 20 years, Murray is Artistic Director of Coco Collective and, a mobile, dance education business offering culturally responsive arts projects that represent African and Caribbean arts. Collette incorporates equity studies to her arts education, mentorship, arts advocacy and socially engaged community arts projects. Murray completed her Master of Education at York University with research on the teaching experiences of Black cultural arts educators within Ontario’s classrooms. Collette holds an Honours BA in Race, Ethnicity and Indigeneity from York University and a Sociology BA from University of Toronto. This award- winning artist is one of 100 Accomplished Black Canadian Women honourees in 2020 and the 2019 Toronto Arts Foundation’s Community Arts Award recipient for transforming local communities through art. Murray is a contributing writer published in the Dance Current magazine and Danse Collection Danse.
Ina Anthony, a retired educator with a degree in Modern Languages and Literature from the University of Toronto has lived in Etobicoke and worked with several Etobicoke secondary schools for the last 46 years.
Her love of foreign languages and the culture associated with them has honed her interest in the Arts. As a parent and educator, Ina has constantly supported music, dance, theatre and arts programs in Toronto. She has also volunteered with the Russian Cultural Aid Society here in Toronto for about 10 years, and has promoted their cultural events.
In her last position as the Curriculum Leader for Support Services at Etobicoke School of the Arts, Ina assisted talented students make important decisions about their post-secondary education and future careers.
Ina strongly advocates for a combination of arts and academics in the Toronto District School Board curriculum, knowing that this blend can allow young people to blossom in their environment and make valuable contributions to society. For the last 12 years, Ina has assisted and supported Arts Etobicoke programs and fundraising events.
Julia Rim Shepard is Director of Strategic Communications at the Future Skills Centre, a pan-Canadian organization dedicated to helping Canadians get skills to thrive in a changing workforce, by connecting ideas and innovations so that employees and employers can succeed.
She holds Carleton University’s Bachelor of Journalism and is a graduate of McMaster University’s Master of Communication-MBA hybrid program, where she continues to support as a part-time teaching assistant. She is change management certified and an accredited public relations professional with the Canadian Public Relations Society.
Julia is passionate about equitable access to education programs and social services for children and families, having spent significant time with various community organizations over the last few decades. She is delighted to be a part of the Arts Etobicoke board, joining others who share the desire to take part in and promote community arts.
Kathryn “RaRa” Asaro Mayers is a Native New Yorker who loves everything about the Big City. For over 3 decades Kathryn has been living in Canada raising her family, then devoting her time to building her networks in Canada and worldwide.
Kathryn went on to develop her market in Real Estate while living in New York until the mid 80’s. Then Psychology, Fitness, Nutrition, Lifestyle & Business Coaching while living in Montreal and New Business Development with her companies as part of her 10 year plan. Speaking, Presenting, Coaching, Team Building, Business Etiquette & Relationship Marketing are some of the roles RaRa is passionate about.
Some of the Businesses that have Kathryn’s personal participation and partnership from inception are Brooklyn Heights, THE BRIDGE, Gratitude Girls, BU (Presenting & Communication Platform) and her Send Out Cards-Team Gratitude.
Rotarian at heart since August of 2014, Kathryn currently serves her community in Toronto as a member with her heart in “Service Above Self”. Kathryn is a former member of Toastmasters International and Business Network International.
Khalilah Brooks has over 25 years in the entertainment industry. Her education and work experience led her to be a Child and Youth Worker for over 8 years and an entrepreneur for 10 years.
Now being a published author and the creator of Aunty B and Friends, she contributes to the community of the performing arts and enjoys every moment of it. BAM Children’s Entertainment provides the service of Musical Theatre Storytelling and creates Digital Media Content for children ages 2-12, using life-size puppets and live characters. Through these platforms, children are encouraged to love themselves and others while inspiring the hearts and minds of children globally and collectively.
In the last 4 years, she’s been the recipient of :
- Centennial College Deans Award Entrepreneurship and Innovation 2019
- MJKO Inspirational Award 2017
- Black Women Role Model of the Year Award from James Maloney in 2016.
- Playing For Keeps Leadership Award 2015
- Canadian Small Business Award 2015
Now in 2020, she can be seen in PSA commercials for Women & Children, Homelessness and Poverty” for the Ontario Government and The Ontario National Food Bank. Khalilah shares her time as a volunteer for (Black Indigenous People of Color) BIPOC TV & Film, she’s a member of WIFT-T (Women In film and television- Toronto) and a board member of Arts Etobicoke.
Krista Parker is a life long arts advocate and educator. She is new to the Etobicoke area and to the Arts Etobicoke board. She is excited to bring with her a passion for the arts and the impact it can have on our community. Krista has been an arts educator for over 20 years in the Durham District School Board. She has worked with several choirs, directed musicals and has been instrumental in creating leadership programs for teens.
Lone Smith is a retired educator with 32 years of experience as a language teacher, consultant, and administrator. She holds a degree in Modern Languages and a Masters in Administration and Languages. Her volunteer work includes President for a Community Organization, The Toronto Principal Centre serving on Executives of Toronto Administrators Association and most recently elected to the Retired teachers of Ontario Executive for Metro. She has always been a strong supporter of the Arts and was instrumental in promoting a strong Visual Arts programs at the Middle School level. She established arts programs in all the schools in which she worked to ensure the students had a strong understanding of the importance of the Arts in addition to strong academic programming.
Coming from a family where Visual Arts was actively promoted (her dad was an artist) she appreciates the role that the Arts plays in a modern society. Lone has been chair of several community organizations for example, The Danish Women’s Cultural Association that promotes culture in all its forms of visual arts, music, and dance. She is currently President of RTO/ERO District 16 Toronto. She continues to work on contract for the Ministry of Education, Toronto District Board of Education and as independent consultant.
Mark Zadorozny is the director and the curator of Mark Christopher Gallery, Toronto. Mark studied the history of art at Queen’s University where he obtained his Bachelor of Arts Honours Degree in 2003. After graduation he continued his studies in Venice, Italy, St. Petersburg, Russia, and then at St. Andrews University, Scotland, where he obtained a Master’s Degree in Art History. Mark’s current focus is on Canadian, American and European contemporary art. He spends his days curating exhibitions, researching the contemporary art market, and helping collectors learn about contemporary painting and sculpture.
Michelle Gauci is a marketing and project management professional in the digital, healthcare and retail industry with over twenty years experience including a track record for delivering successful and profitable results. Her expertise includes partnership enhancement, internal and external relationship management, customer experience optimization, digital and brick and mortar store process efficiency, project management modeling to enhance monitoring and reporting, and consumer engagement via the customer journey through analytics and data management. As an avid arts and culture advocate, Michelle provides insights into innovative programming designed to involve diverse audiences. Michelle leads many initiatives to ensure the continuous focus on strengthening our arts communities.
Moira Ness is an interdisciplinary visual artist from Toronto. She makes ascetic and conceptually-driven work concerned with relentless archiving, pattern generation, and tracing lines through her own personal history. Data mining her collection of personal correspondences and connections, Moira creates confessional and romanticized text and visualized data. Moira participated in the 2018 Toronto Outdoor Art Fair where she won the Catherine Bratty Award for Best of Art Fair, judged by Bruce Eves. In 2019 Moira collaborated with Esprit Orchestra for a performance at Koerner Hall in Toronto. The new orchestral piece “I Hit My Head And Everything Changed” was written by Brian Harman and Moira provided the accompanying video projection of her algorithm created text work. Moira is on Arts Etobicoke’s gallery steering committee, and is a mentor through RBC’s Newcomer Artist Mentorship Program via the Toronto Arts Foundation.
Nancy Newton is a Toronto based artist and has been exhibiting her mixed media drawing and paintings over the last thirty years. She majored in Fine Art at Western University and graduated with an honours degree from York University. Her work can be found in corporate and private collections in Canada, United States, UK, Europe, Japan and Australia.
Over the years, she has been involved in the local arts community as an educator at the secondary level for TDSB, facilitator for Exploring Creativity in Depth (Milkweed Collective) and Board member for Propeller Gallery (Treasurer) and Arts Etobicoke. Since 2012, Nancy has been focused on interpreting one composition entitled Dream-e-scape by Canadian composer R. Murray Schafer. The document, Sound Seed, Born from Music (2020) traces her historical interest and experience with music inspiring visual interpretation. The accompanying video plays segments of the music and gives insights into the creative process.
Rozeta Aleksov and her family enjoy numerous activities provided by Arts Etobicoke since 2017 when they landed as newcomers to Canada. She sees arts as a powerful tool for creating a better world for everyone and she joined the Board to support the efforts for more inclusive and accessible art in the community. She has over fifteen years non-profit leadership and community development experience. For eleven years she made an impact in the national association of municipalities in Serbia, where she navigated systemic change towards more just services and people-centered policies. She was active in the international community and collaborated with various European organizations and networks. She is experienced in project management, strategic planning, facilitation, policy development, stakeholder engagement, etc. In Toronto, she contributed to integrating human rights-based approach to the HousingTO 2020-2030 Action Plan. Rozeta holds MA degree in Public Policy, Public Administration and Local Government.
Veronica Bila is a CPA, CA, CIA with approximately 20 years of public accounting and advisory experience. Veronica is a Partner at MNP LLP in Toronto and specializes in providing internal audit and assurance services to a variety of industries, including government agencies, not-for-profit and charitable organizations. As a Board member for greater than 10 years, Veronica utilizes her skills and knowledge to the benefit of Arts Etobicoke, acting as Treasurer, and now as the Assistant Treasurer. Veronica and her family have been residents of South Etobicoke for over 30 years, living both in New Toronto and now in Alderwood, enjoying and participating in these great communities.