Dressing up for the first formal, critical look at the playbill.

 The Burlington Performing Arts Centre will appear before a Council committee next week and detail their budget projections for the next fiscal year and explain their business plan for the next few years as well.

The BPAC, a project that is the pride of many in the city or one of those “nice to have but not necessary” for others, depending on which side of the cultural divide you have chosen to sit on,  is getting close to Opening Day.  The staffing compliment is growing as they get ready to market and promote programs for the fall season and at the same time keep public anticipation as high as possible.

This is the look the Performing Arts Centre wants to take to the community in its branding, advertising and promotional material.
This is the look the Performing Arts Centre wants to take to the community in its branding, advertising and promotional material.

As part of the pre-launch process the centre released a new “brand” that will be used in all its marketing initiatives.  Graphics are thing you either like or don’t like – here is what the Centre is going forward with.

Past chair Keith Strong has explained that the Centre is going to go for what he calls a “soft opening’ which will have the community able to tour the building and get a sense of what has been built and showcase the opportunities and the potential.

Almost a little too much resemblance between the Mental Health Association logo and that chosen by the Performing Arts Centre.  Is there a hidden intention here?
Almost a little too much resemblance between the Mental Health Association logo and that chosen by the Performing Arts Centre. Is there a hidden intention here?

The decision was made not to open with a loud, expensive boffo event but to let the community warm up to the space with events that are low key and not all that expensive.

The 12 member Board for the Centre (with the Mayor as an Ex officio member) is in place and is made up of:

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Chairman Allan Pearson

Allan was born in Hamilton and has lived in Burlington for most of his life, having grown up in the downtown core. He has been in the automobile business since 1976 and is President of Discovery Ford Sales in Burlington.

Allan has served on the Ford of Canada Roundtable, is a former Board member and past Chair of the Board at Wellington Square United Church and currently sits on the Board of Trustees. Allan is a past Board member and Board Chair of the Burlington Community Foundation.  He is current Vice-Chair of the Canadian Ford Dealer Pension Board of Trustees, and sits on the Board of Directors for the Carpenter Hospice.  Allan has completed the DeGroote School of Business/United Way not-for-profit governance workshop.

Vice Chair Rick Burgess

Rick is a business lawyer based in downtown Burlington. He is an Instructor-Business and Labour Law, Niagara and Sheridan Colleges; Mediator & Group Facilitator; Instructor-Negotiation / Mediation / Dispute Resolution.  From 1980 to 1989 Rick was a business lawyer in Toronto. He has been a member of Ontario & California bar associations since 1980. 

Rick’s community involvement includes:

  • Past Chair, Burlington Community Foundation Board (2009-2010)
  • Past Vice-Chair and Member, Halton Regional Police Services Board (2005-2010)
  • Past Chair, Burlington Chamber of Commerce
  • Past President, Creative Burlington (2008-2009)
  • Past President, Burlington Art Centre (2002-2004)
  • Burlington Art Centre Foundation Board (2004-2005)

Rick has lived in Burlington since 1992 with his wife, Brenda Bowlby, who is also a lawyer, and their daughter Lindsay, who attends university.

Keith Strong

Keith has resided in Burlington for the last 42 years.  He moved to Burlington as an employee of Windsor Salt which later resulted in being employed by Metasurf Canada.  In 1970 Keith purchased a small mobile wash in Hamilton and has been self employed from that time.  In 1985 Keith designed and built the first totally enclosed hazardous waste transfer site and instituted the first permanent household hazardous waste location in Ontario.  In the late 80’s Keith sold his business to Laidlaw.  Over the last 15 years Keith has helped small business to grow and expand.  The remaining of his time has been spent giving back to the Burlington community.  Keith has a daughter Terra and a son Scott both married, living in Oakville raising their families.

Philippe Pango

Dr. Philippe Pango’s inventions and technologies have been successfully implemented in millions of wireless Bluetooth headsets, hearing-aids and ground penetrating radars throughout the world.  A long time resident of Burlington, Dr. Pango’s career started as a Senior Design Engineer for Gennum Corporation, where he was instrumental in the company’s transition to digital hearing aid technology.  In 2006 he launched his first start up, CAYCe, in partnership with McMaster University.   Dr. Pango is currently the Chief Technology Officer of Vitasound Audio Inc., where he oversees the research and development of advanced audio processing technologies, including hearing aids and hearing protection devices.  An avid musician, Dr. Pango understands the importance of arts in a perfectly balanced life, and its positive impact on a community.  He plays electric and acoustic guitar, five-string bass, piano, organ, djembé percussion, sings in a choir that promotes the African culture throughout the Halton region, has authored two novels, and claims to be unbeatable at tennis.

Mary-Ellen Heiman

Mary-Ellen’s professional background includes skills in building strong relationship amongst volunteers, staff, major donors and business partners.  She has held positions in the direction of the performing arts sector as Chair of the Board, and board member, for the St. Lawrence Performing Arts Centre in Toronto, with direct reporting to the City of Toronto.  She has also been a consultant to various music, drama and heritage organizations.  Mary-Ellen has also worked in the visual arts sector as Executive Director of a public non-profit art gallery.  Through these roles she has distinguished herself as a strategic planner and partnership builder with strong Board of Joseph Brant Hospital.

Presently, Mary-Ellen is the Director of Development and funding for the Canadian Centre of Emergency Preparedness.  In her previous consulting career, she was a consultant in needs analysis, strategic planning, promotional enhancement, program design and board development.  Mary-Ellen’s skills include partnership building, workflow analysis, communication methodology and organizational change, with direct experience in marketing, governance, sponsorship and grant funding, financial and event management.  Mary-Ellen has completed the DeGroote School of Business/United Way not-for-profit governance workshop.

Dominic Mercuri

Dominic is a leader in financial services marketing and is currently the Executive Vice President and Chief Marketing Officer for TD Bank Financial Group.  In this capacity Dominic leads a global marketing team and is responsible for the bank’s overall market positioning, and oversees the development and execution of TD’s global marketing and brand strategy. Dominic, his wife Carol, and their children Jennifer and Frank have lived in Burlington since 1995.  He is also a member of the Joseph Brant Memorial Hospital Foundation Board.

Ed Hannah

Ed Hannah was born in Collingwood, raised in Hamilton and has lived for the past 18 years in Burlington.  Ed is a graduate of Yale University (B.A.); York University (M.B.A.); Osgoode Hall Law School (LL.B.); and Harvard Law School (LL. M.).

Ed has spent 22 years of his 27-year professional career as a lawyer at Davies Ward Phillips & Vineberg, LLP (Toronto) where he currently practices law, specializing in Corporate/Commercial Law, Mergers and Acquisitions, Structured Finance and Corporate Governance.

Ed has also been a Senior Vice-President of Score Media Inc., a Toronto Stock Exchange-listed public company, and Executive Vice-President, Corporate Development and General Counsel for Magna Entertainment Corp. and its parent corporation, MI Developments Inc., both public companies cross-listed on U.S. and Canadian stock exchanges.  Ed has served on several public company and charitable boards of directors.

Ilene Elkaim

Ilene Elkaim, a Burlington resident since 1994, recognized for a distinguished career in Logistics and Information Systems for Retail Administration and Operations, founded Six Dynamix in 2005. Six Dynamix partners with small to mid-sized retail or wholesale organizations enabling them to improve efficiencies in their business processes. She has developed an effective process of working collaboratively with their clients to optimize administration and operations during all economic times, including software selection and implementation.

Ilene is also an active thespian within the Hamilton/Halton area since 1996.  Her involvement includes acting, back stage activities as well as having been an active participant on various Boards, including The Aldershot Players and Performing Arts Burlington (now known as Creative Burlington).

Ilene looks forward to joining forces with her fellow board members and management to make constructive, progressive contributions for the Burlington Theatre Board Inc.

Mayor Rick Goldring (Ex-officio)

On December 1, 2010 Rick Goldring was sworn into office as the City of Burlington’s 28th Mayor, after serving four years as Ward 5 City & Regional Councillor. A lifelong Burlington resident, Rick went to Nelson High School and earned his BA (Economics) from McMaster. He lives here with his wife, Cheryl, and they have a combined total of seven daughters.

Having been in business locally for 30 years, most recently as a senior financial advisor with Assante Financial Management Ltd., Rick has always been actively involved in community affairs. In addition to co-hosting Taking Care of Your Future on TV Cogeco, Rick is a member and past president of the Hamilton Chapter of Advocis – Canada’s largest association of financial advisors. Rick is a Rotarian, and has also been on the Board of the Ron Edwards (Burlington) Family YMCA and the Burlington Chamber of Commerce.   As City and Regional Councillor for Ward 5 in Burlington, he chaired both the Budget and Strategic Planning and the Community Services Committees.

Rick is passionate about his community and plans to address major concerns during his term including sustainable development, environmental issues and fiscal responsibility.

Peter Ashmore

Peter Ashmore has lived in Burlington for over 20 years with his wife Marla and their  two children both who are now attending university. He is a principal in MLA Enterprises Inc. an investment holding company. Peter is a member of the Burlington Theatre Board and Chair of its Finance Committee. He has been involved with the Fundraising Campaign Cabinet for The Burlington Performing Arts Centre and the Performing Arts Centre Board Development Task Force. Peter is currently President of the HoliMont Ski Club: a 1400 member not for profit club located in Ellicottville, New York. He has served on the Joseph Brant Memorial Hospital Foundation Board where he held the position of Treasurer. He was also active in the development of the Triathlon Club of Burlington were he remains as director.

Denise Walker

Denise Walker has been an entrepreneur for the past twenty-five years. She started High-Q Computer Education where she taught various software applications to small businesses. Her business has evolved into doing contract work, which includes event planning, client appreciation, business data analysis and marketing support.  She is currently working at Lakeshore Clinic and CIBC Wood Gundy in Burlington.  Denise started as a member of the Burlington Performing Arts Centre Fundraising Campaign Cabinet for more than 5 years, and is now a member of the Burlington Theatre Board Inc. Denise is also currently the Fundraising Chair.

Denise is passionate about the project and is currently working on completing the 11 million dollar Capital Campaign.  

Denise is a Wilfrid Laurier Graduate with a degree in Economics.

She was born in Montreal, but has been a Burlington resident for 41 years.  Denise and her husband Kevin have three children; one doing postgraduate studies and two in university.  Denise has completed the DeGroote School of Business/United Way not-for-profit governance workshop.

Steve Zorbas

Steve Zorbas is currently Acting General Manager of Development and Infrastructure for the City of Burlington, Ontario, Canada.  At the City of Burlington he has also held the positions of Acting Director of the Parks and Recreation Department and Executive Director of the Finance Department. He has over 27 years financial experience within local government, which have included the Town of Richmond Hill and the City of Mississauga. Prior to entering local government he also worked in the private sector in various financial positions in both the retail and manufacturing environments.

His academic accomplishments include holding a Bachelor of Commerce degree, diploma in public administration as well as being a professional accountant, Certified Management Accountant (CMA).  He currently is a board member (MPAC) at the Municipal Property Assessment Corporation and also Chair of the MPAC Audit Committee.

He has served as Chair/Past-Chair/Vice-Chair as well as board member for the Municipal Finance Officer’s Association of Ontario (MFOA).  In addition he has been a board member on the Government Finance Officer’s Association of the United States and Canada (GFOA) subcommittee, Committee of Canadian Issues (CCI) as well as serving as a budget review officer and budget program advisor as part of GFOA’s distinguished budget award program.

Councillor Rick Craven

Rick Craven is a four term member of both Burlington City and Halton Regional Councils. He is a recipient of the Lyn Benson Memorial Award for outstanding contributions to the Community of Aldershot and the Halton Award of Excellence for promoting a safe and Healthy Community.

Councillor Craven currently serves on Halton’s Health and Social Services Committee, Halton Police Services Board and is President of the Halton Community Housing Corporation.[/box]

The Performing Arts Centre is getting to the point where it will soon actually look like the architects rendering we have seen for so many years.  Delightful.
The Performing Arts Centre is getting to the point where it will soon actually look like the architects rendering we have seen for so many years. Delightful.

These are the people you want to button hole and share your views on the Centre and its programming.  Most are volunteers and have gotten the Centre to the point where it will soon open and in the process have raised just under $11 million in public funding.  The Centre is owned by the city and run by the arms length Burlington Performing Arts Centre with the city picking up any deficits while the centre gets itself on its feet.

The creation of an audience and the development of a program that meets the interest of the community is part marketing science with a lot of creativity and sensitivity to the community added.  Executive Director Brenda Heatherington came to Burlington from St. Albert, a community just north of Edmonton. Alberta where she was hugely successful developing local theatre.


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