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Don Oravec

President

Don has worked in the cultural sector for over 25 years, first at the Toronto Symphony Orchestra in Marketing, Customer Service and Development, then at Tafelmusik, Canada’s Baroque Orchestra as the Director of Development. While at Tafelmusik Don helped the organization establish a one-million-dollar endowment and increased their corporate and individual donors. In 2003 Don moved to the Writers’ Trust of Canada where he was Director of Fund Development and from 2005 to 2012 he was Executive Director. The Writers’ Trust is a national organization dedicated to making the lives of professional Canadian writers better. In 2012 Don retired and is now splitting his time between Toronto and Fort Lauderdale and traveling to places on his ‘bucket list’. He has a seat on the board of Toronto’s Word on the Street and he is part of a group helping to create a Canadian women’s writing prize for fiction (called the Roselyn Prize). A launch date has not been established. Don is also on the board of directors for his Florida condo — Coral Ridge Towers South until March of 2015 and is on the Resident’s Advisory Committee for Palace Pier his condo home in Toronto. Don had the adventure of a lifetime — in 1989 he ‘retired’ for the first time, packed his bags and moved to Montserrat in the West Indies. He survived hurricane Hugo, which hit the island as a category five storm and then in 2004 he sold his home on the island two months before the dormant volcano erupted for the first time in 400 years.

President@ProjectBookmarkCanada.ca

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Anna Ling Kaye

Vice President

Anna Ling Kaye writes fiction, creative non-fiction and translation. Her fiction has appeared in Prairie Fire, emerge and Culture magazines, and her journalism has appeared in The International Herald Tribune, The Tyee and subTerrain. Her translations have been set to music by contemporary composers. Anna is founder and a director of Hapa-palooza Festival, former prose editor at PRISM international magazine and current editor of Ricepaper magazine.

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Linda Hughes

Secretary

Linda's many career changes result from having lived in BC, Alberta, New York state, and now Ontario. She has been an educator, a Hansard editor, a college conference manager, a medical publishing editor and manager, and a program head at the Hamilton Community Foundation amongst other ventures. She loves Project Bookmark and the visionary Miranda with all her ideas. She would like to do what she can to help move the project forward.

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Kevin Noel

Treasurer

Kevin Noel is Chief Operating Officer and oversees Finance, Administration, Human Resources and Information Technology for the Responsible Gambling Council, a non-profit organization dedicated problem gambling prevention. Before joining RGC, Kevin was Manager, Financial Systems and Analysis at CHUM Television. Kevin attended Memorial University in St. John’s and received his Master of Business Administration with a concentration in Finance and Strategy and his Bachelor of Arts with a major in French Language and a minor in English Literature. For five years, Kevin volunteered with Frontier Canada as a tutor and mentor to a grade seven student from an inner city school and for eight years he volunteered with Fife House as part of a team which prepared and served dinner for low-income men with HIV/AIDS living in subsidized housing. Kevin’s passions include Canadian literature, Inuit art (he is an avid collector) and his most recent Android downloads. Over the past year, Kevin has enjoyed putting his enthusiasm for new media and financial skills to work for Project Bookmark Canada as a member of the board of directors.

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Alma Lee

Executive Member

Alma Lee was the founding Artistic Director of the Vancouver International Writers Festival; one of Vancouver’s most prestigious cultural events. She also was the founding Executive Director of The Writers’ Union of Canada and The Writers’ Trust of Canada. Alma worked for several years as an associate producer in charge of script development for Universal Pictures when they had a production office in Toronto. She moved to Vancouver in 1984. Ms. Lee was inducted into the Order of Canada, is a YWCA Woman of Distinction, and has received an honorary degree from Simon Fraser University. She was also recently a recipient of the Queen’s Diamond Jubilee medal and was given The Writers’ Trust of Canada’s Award for distinguished contribution to the literary community. Alma left the Writers Festival in December 2005 and is currently developing a new festival — CUFFED — a festival featuring crime fiction writers.

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Hughena Matheson

Executive Member

Hughena was born and raised in Sydney, Cape Breton. She received a B.A. from Mount Allison University and then studied at the Ontario College of Education. For many years, Hughena taught English and Peer Tutoring in Ontario high schools. She was presented with a Prime Minister’s Award for Teaching Excellence (Certificate of Achievement) for 2001-2002, mainly for her work with Peer Tutoring.  After retirement, Hughena worked for Rubicon Publishing, writing and editing for their series The 10. After that, she worked for Vitalink Canada Inc., marketing and selling educational materials to schools across Canada.  

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Munju Ravindra

Executive Member

Munju Ravindra is an interpretive planner and natural scientist, with over fifteen years experience in interpretive planning, nature conservation, and community development. Munju currently works in these capacities for Gros Morne National Park/ UNESCO World Heritage Site in Newfoundland where, for half the year, she trains, mentors and supervises the entire team of frontline interpretive guides, as well as overseeing interpretive trail development, exhibits, and publications. For the other half of the year, Munju runs Ideas Unlimited Consulting from Halifax, Nova Scotia. Her clients have included the World Bank (for which she advised the Albanian government on the development of cultural and ecological tourism around Albania’s showpiece National Park, Butrint World Heritage Site) and the Atlantic ÉCONOMUSÉE Network of four innovative visitor interpretation centres (artisans showcasing the historical background and production process inherent in their craft or trade, allowing visitors to see ‘artisans at work’). In each ÉCONOMUSÉE, she was involved in research, thematic concept development, exhibit design, storyboarding, production, installation, and overall project management.  Munju has a knack for finding the story in everything (including marketing and business development), and she is often consulted by her colleagues in the tourism industry for advice on getting the story front and centre, and in honing its appeal to varied audiences or markets. Her strong programming background has led her to focus on creating ‘transformative’ visitor experiences through innovative on-site and outreach programs and she works with the education community, front line interpreters, and partner organizations to come up with new ways of engaging audiences. 

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Bianca Spence

Executive Member

Bianca Spence is an arts administrator and publishing professional with over fifteen years of experience in the industry. Her career has included stints at McClelland & Stewart, Cormorant Books, the Canada Council for the Arts, and the Ontario Media Development Corporation. Whether in editorial, rights management, or marketing and publicity, she has worked with authors who have won or been nominated for the Giller Prize, the Griffin Poetry Prize, the IMPAC Dublin Literary Award, the Governor General’s Award, the Trillium Book Award, and Canada Reads. 

This summer, after numerous heat advisories, along with a lack of air conditioning on 20% of cars on the Bloor-Danforth subway line, Bianca issued a “hot car challenge” to Toronto Mayor John Tory via Twitter. Mayor Tory accepted the challenge, and together they rode the entire stretch of the Bloor-Danforth line a non-air-conditioned subway. Since that ride, Bianca has been nominated as one of Samara Canada’s 2016 Everyday Political Citizens.  

An avid book lover, Bianca lives in Toronto where she remains actively involved in the publishing industry.

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