Melissa Adams, Librarian and Archivist, Union of BC Indian Chiefs
Melissa is a member of the Nisga’a Nation from the House of Wisin Xbil’tkw of the Gisk’aast (Killerwhale) tribe. In her current role, she supports UBCIC’s work representing and advocating for Indigenous interests, rights and title. This includes managing the library collection, institutional archives, digital resources and gallery space, as well as providing reference services and training. She is also beginning to learn her language.
Jill R. Baird, Curator of Education, UBC Museum of Anthropology
Jill Baird, Curator of Education works in cross-cultural education through collaborative programme development. Working with cultural practitioners and artists, she has co-developed a range of museum educational resources for schools and for the general public.
Nicole Balsdon, Education & Outreach Coordinator, Beaty Biodiversity Museum
Nicole Balsdon is the Education & Outreach Coordinator at the Beaty Biodiversity Museum at UBC. Her diverse background includes managing volunteers, designing educational programs, biological studies, and volunteering with children. Nicole’s passion is creating opportunities for science education and fostering connections between scientists, research, students, and the general public. Driven by a love of science, she strives to understand museum visitor opinions and trends through visitor studies projects. Nicole holds a B.Sc. in Environmental Biology from the University of Alberta.
Allison Benner, Co-op Coordinator, Humanities and Fine Arts, University of Victoria
Allison Benner is the Co-op Coordinator for Humanities and Fine Arts at the University of Victoria. Prior to joining Co-op in 2015, she was a sessional lecturer and freelance writer, researcher, and curriculum developer. She draws on this background to help students to contribute their research, communication, research, marketing, and design skills in support of the vital public education and community engagement roles played by museums and heritage institutions, whether in promoting historical awareness or driving social change.
Sandra Borger, Education Specialist, Surrey Museum
Sandra has worked in museums for the last decade and is currently the Education Specialist at the Surrey Museum. She has a Master of Arts Degree in History from Simon Fraser University with a focus in gender and oral history, and is currently finishing off her Diploma in Cultural Resource Management at the University of Victoria.
Pam Brown, Curator of Pacific Northwest, UBC Museum of Anthropology
Pam Brown is of Heiltsuk and Kitasoo ancestry. She is an anthropologist and curator, Pacific Northwest at the UBC Museum of Anthropology. Her expertise includes material culture, collaborative research, community exhibitions and Aboriginal internships. Pam’s priority is to make museum resources more accessible to Aboriginal artists, Elders, youth, communities and organizations. She has been privileged to direct the Native Youth Program since 1994 and is currently a part of the Híɫzaqv Language Mobilization Partnership team at UBC working with the Heiltsuk Cultural and Education Centre.
Bio to come
Jackie Chambers, Education & Outreach Manager, Beaty Biodiversity Museum
Jackie Chambers is the Education & Outreach Manager for the Beaty Biodiversity Museum at UBC. She has worked in informal science education in museums and botanical gardens around the world. This international experience has provided her with opportunities to learn about a range of habitats and ecosystems and the opportunity to work with diverse groups of people. She enjoys learning about people and places and sharing her enthusiasm for biology, botany and the natural world. She holds a M.Sc. in Ethnobotany and a M.Ed. in Museum Education from UBC.
Hanna Cho, Producer, NGX Interactive
With a diverse background in cultural research, policy, and technology, Hanna’s work sits at the nexus of innovation, network culture, and engagement. As a Producer for NGX Interactive, she creates digital interactive storytelling experiences for museums, science/discovery centres, and other cultural and educational organizations. Before joining NGX Interactive, she was Curator of Engagement and Dialogue at the Museum of Vancouver (MOV), where she spearheaded numerous community collaborations, participatory urban installations, and the museum’s first Virtual Museum of Canada exhibition and augmented reality app, “The Visible City.” Her professional service includes serving on the BC Museums Association Board of Directors, where she co-chairs the Professional Development and Awards Committees.
Lisa Codd, Curator, Burnaby Village Museum
Lisa Codd is a passionate advocate of the preservation and interpretation of material culture. She believes our collections should be accessible, relevant, and intentional. As Curator of the Burnaby Village Museum, she spearheaded the creation of the Heritage Burnaby website providing access to more than 90,000 City of Burnaby heritage assets, and works collaboratively with the Museum’s programming and conservation staff to create hands-on access to heritage for the over 200,000 annual visitors of the outdoor museum. Working with former Assistant Curator Tom Gooden, she developed and implemented evaluation and de-accessioning protocols that have led to better storage conditions overall, and created capacity for new collecting. Lisa is a former Vice President of the BC Museums Association, former President of the Archives Association of BC, was Managing Editor of Museums Roundup from 2009 to 2015. She is owner and principal of Shared Solutions, a consulting firm specializing in collections planning and evaluation.
Nika Collison, Curator, Haida Gwaii Museum
Nika Collison (Jisgung) of the Ts’aahl Eagle Clan is a singer, drummer, and weaver, and has been working in her community on Haida language, dance, and repatriation among other projects. She is the curator of the Haida Gwaii Museum, specializing in historic and contemporary Haida art and culture. Throughout her career she has had the honour of working with several institutions in the creation of major exhibitions and publications. She works on a local and global scale to build partnerships between the Haida Nation, museums/institutions, and the public.
Liz Crocker, Learning Program Developer, Royal BC Museum
Liz’s experience ranges from front-line interpretation, designing school and public programs and managing volunteers to interpretive planning and interpretive writing for museums, parks and historic sites. Liz has worked on several digital learning projects for the Virtual Museum of Canada and more recently, the Royal BC Museum’s Learning Portal.
Liz Czerwinski, Conservator, Burnaby Village Museum
Bio to come.
Jennifer Douglas, Assistant Professor, iSchool@UBC
Jennifer Douglas is an Assistant Professor at the School of Library, Archival and Information Studies, the iSchool@UBC, where she teaches in the Master of Archival Studies program. Jennifer’s research is focused on personal archives, archival representation, and archival ethics. She is currently conducting a study on the role(s) of record making and record keeping in griefwork. Jennifer is currently the General Editor of Archivaria.
Karen Duffek, Curator of Contemporary Visual Arts and Pacific Northwest, UBC Museum of Anthropology
Karen Duffek is the Curator of Contemporary Visual Arts and Pacific Northwest at the UBC Museum of Anthropology. She has worked with artists from across Canada and internationally on exhibitions and publications, as well as museum- and community-based collections-research projects. From Beyond History at the Vancouver Art Gallery in 1989 (co-curated with Tom Hill) to Border Zones: New Art across Cultures (MOA 2010) to Peter Morin’s Museum, curated with Peter Morin (Satellite Gallery 2011), Duffek has actively worked to question the boundary between art gallery and anthropology museum. In 2016 she worked with Tania Willard to co-curate Lawrence Paul Yuxweluptun: Unceded Territories, an exhibition that won the CMA Award for Outstanding Exhibition.
Heather Dunn, Heritage Information Analyst – Standards, Canadian Heritage Information Network (CHIN)
Heather Dunn specializes in standards for the management and documentation of museum collections. After working in a wide range of museums and galleries across Canada and the UK, she completed a Masters degree in Museum Studies. She has been with the Canadian Heritage Information Network (CHIN) since 1995, and is working with CHIN and the Nomenclature Task Force to develop the new Nomenclature + Online. She has been a member of the Nomenclature Task Force since 2010, and was Co-editor of Nomenclature 4.0.
Kris Foulds, Curator of Historical Collections, The Reach Gallery Museum
Kris Foulds has a passion for history that drew her to museum work in the mid-1980s when she started her career at the MSA Museum Society. She spent 25 years there, working with the community and learning more about Abbotsford’s unique and colourful heritage. Kris participated on the City committee to develop The Reach and its opening exhibitions; working to celebrate the community through the stories of its citizens and creative expression of its artists. She is employed as The Reach Curator of Historical Collections where she works to build a collection that is truly representative of Abbotsford: collecting the stories, objects, archival material and photographs The Reach will preserve and use to interpret community history.
Amy Gibson, Marketing, Communications & Events Coordinator, Beaty Biodiversity Museum
Amy Gibson is the Marketing, Communications & Events Coordinator with the Beaty Biodiversity Museum at UBC. Amy has a Bachelor’s Degree in Communications and ten years of marketing experience, with the past three at UBC. Amy is responsible for all of the museum’s social media, in addition to running the museum’s special events, website, blog, promotional activities, and more. This year, she is working on implementing an integrated communication strategy with the goal of increasing engagement rates across all social media channels.
Naveen Girn, Co-founder, South Asian Canadian Histories Association
Naveen Girn is a community engagement specialist and award winning curator whose practice centers on fostering intergenerational and intercultural dialogue in Metro Vancouver. Naveen has worked on exhibitions for: the Museum of Vancouver, the Surrey Art Gallery, Surrey Museum, New Westminster Museum and Archives, Centre A Asian Art Gallery, and Royal BC Museum. He was Project Manager for the multi-institutional 1914-2014: Komagata Maru: Generations, Geographies, and Echoes centennial commemoration and he curated Simon Fraser University’s definitive online exhibition for the Komagata Maru Episode. As a founder of the South Asian Canadian Histories Association, Naveen works to curate exhibitions and public programs that provide marginalized voices a space to be heard.
Kim Gough, Learning Program Developer, Royal BC Museum
Kim recently earned her Master of Museum Education at the University of British Columbia where her final research project was on outreach for seniors. Her work for the Royal BC Museum has included school programs, feature exhibitions, volunteer training, gallery interpretation and adult evening programs.
Stephanie Halapija, Director and Curator, Nisga’a Museum
Stephanie Halapija is the Director and Curator of the Nisga’a Museum, located in the Nass Valley – the proud home of the Nisga’a Nation. She is enthusiastic about the role of museums in our shifting cultural landscape and bringing awareness to the repatriation efforts of First Nations peoples. Her work with the Nisga’a Museum and Nisga’a Lisims Government directly involve further repatriation, museum operations and growing the cultural outreach of the Nisga’a Nation. Stephanie has worked with various museums in Ontario, prior to her move to B.C. in 2016, most notably in the field of curation and development. She has a B.A. in Near Eastern and Classical Archaeology and has conducted field work in the Middle East and Canada.
Babs Kelly, Executive Director, BC Library Trustees Association
Babs uses a community engagement approach for supporting the development of organizations and boards and has extensive experience with designing and facilitating community forums and events, and with building strong stakeholder partnerships, communications, and engagement. She enjoys bringing people together to have conversations that matter and result in purposeful actions and desired outcomes. For her, BCLTA is the perfect place to do this work!
Mairin Kerr, Communications Specialist, Royal BC Museum
Mairin Kerr is a Communication Specialist at the Royal BC Museum. She is particularly passionate about the power of social media to tell museum stories. This obsession began when she completed her Masters of Museum Studies from the University of Toronto and embarked on a Graduate Internship at the J. Paul Getty Museum where she fell in love with informal education and digital media. It grew with Mairin’s work experience at the Victoria & Albert Museum in London and the Beaty Biodiversity Museum in Vancouver. Mairin is now the woman behind @royalbcmuseum and encourages people to #AMA about social media.
Helen Kobrc, Co-op Coordinator, University of Victoria
Helen Kobrc has worked with heritage and cultural organizations in various capacities during her career, including the provincial Heritage Branch and UVic’s Cultural Resource Management Programs. Currently, as a Co-op Coordinator, she supports students who are looking to develop competencies that relate to working in museums and heritage organizations.
Erik Lambertson, Corporate Communications Manager, Royal BC Museum
Erik Lambertson joined the Royal BC Museum in 2014, after starting his professional career in journalism and working in communications for the BC Government. As the Royal BC Museum’s Corporate Communications Manager, Erik develops relationships with media worldwide, liaises with government partners, provides guidance on social media and develops internal communications tactics. Erik brings a depth of experience and sharp ambition to his role, generating memorable narratives about the Royal BC Museum, building strategic partnerships and finding creative ways to communicate the great, unsung stories of the Royal BC Museum to the rest of the world.
Kasey Lee, Senior Conservator, Royal BC Museum
Kasey Lee is the Senior Conservator at the Royal BC Museum. Prior to that she worked at the Glenbow Museum in Calgary and the Royal Saskatchewan Museum in Regina. Kasey holds a Master of Art Conservation degree from Queen’s University. Her areas of specialty are ethnographic objects conservation, preventive conservation and risk management. Kasey overseas the preventive conservation programs at the Royal BC Museum and works across departments to minimize risks to collections while ensuring they are available for exhibits, loans, events and programs.
Carol E. Mayer, Head of Curatorial and Interpretation, UBC Museum of Anthropology
Dr. Carol E. Mayer is the head of the curatorial and interpretation department at the UBC Museum of Anthropology where she is responsible for the Pacific collections and has research interests in world ceramics. Her current research is concerned with the complex intersections between museum collections and different knowledge systems. Recently she has been working on the impact of uncontrolled resource extraction practices on Indigenous rights in Papua New Guinea. Her recent exhibition “In the Footprint of the Crocodile Man: Contemporary Art of the Sepik River, Papua New Guinea” introduced a global dimension to these practices.
Scott Marsden, Executive Director, Haida Gwaii Museum
Photo to come
Scott Marsden is the Executive Director at The Haida Gwaii Museum. Previously, Scott was Curator at The Reach Gallery Museum Abbotsford from 2008 – 2013 and was Director/Curator at the Yukon Arts Centre Public Art Gallery from 2002 – 2007. Scott earned his Doctorate of Philosophy, Education Studies specialty in Art Education at the University of Victoria. Scott has a Master of Fine Arts degree from York University and is an Associate of the Ontario College of Art and Design University in Toronto.
Justina Moore, Administrative Assistant, Nisga’a Museum
Justina is a Nisga’a citizen, hailing from the house of Ni’isyuus of the Gisk’aast (Killer whale) tribe. Alongside her work as an administrative assistant at Hli Goothl Wilp Adokshl Nisga’a – Nisga’a Museum, Justina is an emerging museum professional and active member in the Nisga’a Nation with strong knowledge of her culture, language, and a fundamental belief in the passing down of the oral histories. She continues to take part in all cultural events in her community of Laxgalts’ap, including the Laxgalts’ap Cultural Dancers. Additionally she volunteers as a youth basketball coach, this being her favourite opportunity to tie in Nisga’a tradition with athleticism. Justina has a background in business administration and a remarkable interest in continuing studies in the museum industry, with an aspiration to become a curator.
Chris O’Connor, Learning Program Developer, Royal BC Museum
Chris has experience in school programs, teaching curriculum-based creative movement. At the Royal BC Museum, Chris has most recently led on the Wonder Sunday family program, Spring Break Camps, and the Night at the Museum family sleepover. His particular interest is in fostering an active environment for visitors to experience the museum exhibits and collections in innovative and engaging ways.
Alison Pascal (Mixalíts̓a7), Junior Curator, Squamish Lil’wat Cultural Centre
Alison Pascal (Mixalíts̓a7) is of the Lil’wat Nation and is currently a Junior Curator at the Squamish Lil’wat Cultural Centre in Whistler. She has been in this role since 2015, previous to that she was a member of the Cultural Delivery Team (tour guide). Alison’s passion is educating and inspiring visitors to learn more about the Squamish, Lil’wat Nations and other First Nations people. Currently she is working on the ‘Spo7ez Workhouse’ exhibition that highlights the revolution of Regalia (traditional clothing) worn in the shared village of the Squamish and Lil’wat Nations, Spo7ez, located in Whistler.
Nuno Porto, Curator for Africa and South America, UBC Museum of Anthropology
Nuno Porto is curator for Africa and South America at the UBC Museum of Anthropology. Until to 2011, he taught at the University of Coimbra, Portugal where he developed a series of exhibitions under the notion of ‘ethnographic installation.’ At the MOA since 2012, he has focused on self-representation of African identities in contemporary Afro-Cuban art and in Kenyan popular photography. Recently, he curated Cherie Mose’s sound installation, suggesting that the status of ‘migrant’ applies both to artefacts and persons, and disrupting the visual centrality of displays. His work explores how genres create borders and attempts to, creatively, disrupt both.
Susan Rowley, Curator Public Archaeology/Circumpolar/Pacific Northwest, UBC Museum of Anthropology
Susan Rowley is an associate professor in the Department of Anthropology and a curator at the Museum of Anthropology (MOA) at the University of British Columbia. She holds a Ph.D. in archaeology from Cambridge University. Sue has worked with Inuit elders on historical research and with Inuit youth on archaeology projects. She is currently working with First Nations communities in British Columbia. Since 2005 she has been the Museum of Anthropology?s member on the Steering Group of the Reciprocal Research Network (www.rrncommunity.org). In 2015 she was a member of the curatorial team for c̓əsnaʔəm, the city before the city and co-curated the exhibition at MOA.
Jolene Sampare, Museum Coordinator, Nisga’a Museum
Jolene Sampare Hlway’ Ksim Gisk’aast niiy’ ii wilps Wisin Xbliltw wil witgwiy ii Laxgalts’ap will jogay’ (Jolene Sampare is Killerwhale from the house of Wisin Xbiltkw and resides in the Nisga’a community of Laxgalts’ap). Jolene has worked with the Hli Goothl Wilp Adokshl Nisga’a – Nisga’a Museum since it opened in 2011 in various departments starting as the Gift Shop Coordinator and working up to her current post as the Museum Coordinator. In spring of 2017 Jolene completed the lead role on her first exhibition at the Nisga’a Museum entitled: Harvesting Nisga’a: The Rich Cultural Identity and Survival of Nisga’a Fishing, which included a community engagement project resulting in over 1200 photos and 800 individual entries dedicated to the exhibition. She is passionate about indigenous issues, repatriation and furthering opportunities for aboriginal leaders in the Museum community. Jolene’s experiences in the museum sector drove her to enthusiastically complete her Office Administration Diploma through Nicola Valley Institute of Technology and more recently, graduate from the Cultural Resource Management Program at the University of Victoria.
Sharanjit Kaur Sandhra, Coordinator, South Asian Studies Institute, University of the Fraser Valley
Sharanjit Kaur Sandhra has been the Coordinator at the South Asian Studies Institute at the University of the Fraser Valley for eight years. Sharn also co-curates exhibits at the Sikh Heritage Museum, located in the National Historic Site Gur Sikh Temple in Abbotsford, BC. Sharn completed her Master of Arts Degree in Asian Studies from UBC in 2008 and is currently in her third year of PhD studies in the Department of History at UBC. Sharn is interested in looking at the affective experience of early Sikh migration in 20th century British Columbia. Sharn has a great passion for activist work and engagement in the community through academia and museum exhibits.
Michael Schwartz, Director of Community Engagement, Jewish Museum and Archives of BC
Michael Schwartz is Director of Community Engagement at the Jewish Museum and Archives of BC. Over the past four years in this role, Michael has increased the visibility of the JMABC through innovative public programming including The Chosen Food Supper Club, The Kitchen Stories podcast, seven online exhibits, and collaborations with organizations including Capture Photography Festival, the Contemporary Art Gallery, and the HUA Foundation. He holds a BA in History from Concordia University, and an MA in History from the University of Toronto. In 2017, he was recognized as one of the BCMA’s Changemakers.
Katie Sloan, Project Archivist, UBC Athletics & Recreation
Katie Sloan is a recent graduate of the Dual Masters of Archival Studies and Masters of Library and Information Studies program at the University of British Columbia. In addition to her studies, Katie has also worked at several archives and museums including UBC Rare Books & Special Collections, UBC Museum of Anthropology, the Nikkei National Museum & Culture Centre, and the Jewish Museum and Archives of BC.
Brady Smith, Executive Director, Squamish Lil’wat Cultural Centre
Photo to come
Brady Smith is the Executive Director of the Squamish Lil’wat Cultural Centre, where he has worked towards developing a sustainable business model for the museum. He has played an active part in shaping Whistler, as a local hotel industry veteran and former Whistler Sports Legacies business development manager.
Leona Sparrow, Director, Musqueam Treaty, Lands and Resources Department
Leona Sparrow is Musqueam’s liaison to the University of British Columbia and the Musqueam liaison with the Museum of Anthropology, where she has collaborated on First Nations representation and museum displays, and facilitated Museum Intern positions for Musqueam youth. For 15 years, Leona served on Musqueam Chief and Council and worked as a consultant before returning to UBC and graduating from law school. She is now the Director of Musqueam’s Treaty, Lands and Resources Department, and serves on several Aboriginal service providers’ boards and committees including Vancouver Aboriginal Child and Family Services Society, New Relationship Trust, and the Museum of Anthropology.
Nicole Stanbridge, Curator of Engagement, Art Gallery of Greater Victoria
Nicole’s work focuses on bridging the curatorial and educational aims of the AGGV to deepen connections with, and be relevant to a range of communities through exhibitions, programming, and outreach. Nicole is of British and Norwegian descent and is an uninvited guest on the traditional territory of the Lekwungen peoples. She has been actively engaged in Victoria’s art community for 20 years and part of the curatorial department at the AGGV since 2005. She is currently working on a collaborative project with artist Marianne Nicolson called Wa’witlala, which is a cross-cultural, cross-disciplinary project looking at issues related to water.
Heidi Swierenga, Senior Conservator, UBC Museum of Anthropology
Bio to come
Jordan Wilson, Independent Curator and Writer
Jordan Wilson is an independent curator and writer. He was a co-curator of the exhibit c̓əsnaʔəm, the city before the city, at the Museum of Anthropology (MOA). A member of the Musqueam Indian Band, Jordan holds an MA in Anthropology, and a BA in First Nations Studies, both obtained at UBC. He is currently a Canada Council for the Arts Aboriginal curator-in-residence at MOA, where he is co-curating the opening exhibit for the Gallery of Northwest Coast Masterworks, In a Different Light: Reflecting on Northwest Coast Art.
Jennifer Vanderfluit, Archivist
Jennifer Vanderfluit recently earned her Masters of Archival Studies and Masters of Library and Information Studies at the University of British Columbia. While completing her degrees she worked as a processing assistant in the University Archives. She previously earned degrees in history and art history-museum studies from the University of Lethbridge.