Keynote Speakers


Kathleen-04Kathleen Bartels, Director, Vancouver Art Gallery

Kathleen Bartels is the Director of the Vancouver Art Gallery where she has led the Gallery through a period of unprecedented growth and, in 2015, marked 14 years of leadership as the Director of this 84-year-old organization.

Bartels’ direction has resulted in a significant transformation in the program, melding a dynamic mix of contemporary and historical exhibitions that exemplify the Gallery’s commitment to bring the best of the art world to Vancouver and the best of Vancouver to the world. Through such ground-breaking exhibitions as KRAZY! The Delirious World of Animē + Comics + Video Games + Art (2008), Beat Nation: Art, Hip Hop and Aboriginal Culture (2012), Unscrolled: Reframing Tradition in Contemporary Chinese Art (2014), and How Do I Fit This Ghost in My Mouth? An exhibition by Geoffrey Farmer (2015), the Gallery has heightened its international reputation in the contemporary art community. Outstanding historical exhibitions have become another Vancouver Art Gallery hallmark, including such original presentations as Leonardo da Vinci: The Mechanics of Man (which attracted more than 150,000 visitors to the Gallery during the Olympic and Paralympic Winter Games in 2010), The Colour of My Dreams: The Surrealist Revolution in Art (2011), and Charles Edenshaw (2013). In addition, Bartels has to date co-curated four Gallery exhibitions with artist Jeff Wall, including Anthony Hernandez (2009), Kerry James Marshall (2010), Patrick Faigenbaum (2013), and Martin Honert (2013). In 2014, in association with the opening of The Forbidden City: Inside the Court of China’s Emperors, the Gallery launched the Institute of Asian Art to reflect its deep commitment to exhibiting contemporary and historical Asian art and exploring the art and culture of Vancouver and its place in the world. Vigorous audience engagement has also been a priority for Bartels, and today the Gallery delivers a diverse range of public educational programs for more than 190,000 people annually designed to engage the community in understanding and appreciating the world of art and culture.

With an annual operating budget now at approximately $17 million, the Gallery has made great strides during Bartels’ tenure in growing the levels of contributed and earned income, with private sector donations having increased by more than 250%, the institutional endowment growing fifty-fold from $200,000 to more than $11 million today, and significant growth in attendance, including an average of 35,000 members annually. The Gallery’s collection, which represents the most comprehensive resource for visual culture in British Columbia, now numbers 11,617 representing a 49% increase from 2001. Since 2006, the Gallery has ensured broader access throughout British Columbia to our permanent collection by delivering Across the Province, a Gallery-sponsored exhibition program from our collection.

For more than a decade, Bartels has led the institution on its journey to build a new, expanded Vancouver Art Gallery. In 2008, the Gallery received a gift of $50 million from the Province of British Columbia, representing the first contribution towards a $350 million capital and endowment campaign. In 2013, Vancouver City Council unanimously approved the designation of a City-owned site at West Georgia and Cambie Streets for the new Gallery, and in 2014 the Gallery announced Herzog & de Meuron as the selected architects. The goal for the new Gallery, scheduled to open in 2021, is to provide the citizens of Vancouver and all who visit with an amazing experience of art that celebrates British Columbia and its unique place in our world.
Kathleen Bartels has received many awards and honours during her tenure at the Gallery, and most recently the 2015 Outstanding Individual Award by the Downtown Vancouver Business Improvement Association. She is very proud to serve as a Board member of the British Columbia Achievement Foundation.



Dr. John Nightingale, President & CEO, Vancouver Aquarium Marine Science Centre

Dr. Nightingale has a broad professional background in aquatic sciences, specializing in using them to enhance public awareness, education and promote conservation. The world’s oceans and freshwater systems are the heart, veins and arteries of the earth’s physiology. Their role in sustaining life, distributing nutrients and stabilizing physical forces cannot be under estimated.

As a professional biologist and public educator, Dr. Nightingale has been responsible for the development and operation of some of the world’s best aquariums and in this role has harnessed these institutions to engage with the public in substantive and meaningful ways. During his twenty two years at the Vancouver Aquarium, he has guided the expansion of the Aquarium’s leadership in conservation, education and research while focusing operations on sustainability and solid fiscal performance. As a result, the Vancouver Aquarium is not only perhaps the “greenest” civic institution in Canada, it is the only one that is financially self-sufficient, operating without an annual subsidy from Government. Under John’s leadership,the Aquarium has grown to a $32 million operation with 500 staff.




David Alexander, Royal BC Museum, Head of Archives, Access and Digital

Pursuing passions for museums and the digital world, David oversees an integrated department at the Royal BC Museum that includes the archives, physical and digital access to collections and preservation and digital services and initiatives. David is responsible for the care of the archives collection, growth and maintenance of the museum’s collections management databases, the development of strategic partnerships and an array of related services. In his role, David has created a new digital sphere for the museum and archives by developing and maintaining secure, open-source, publicly accessible systems for managing and sharing BC’s cultural resources.  David has a background in technology and culture and holds a Masters of Applied Communication degree with a specialty in digital communications.


photo_upload_2_sandhra_s_99206Satwinder K Bains, University of the Fraser Valley, Centre for Indo Canadian Studies

Satwinder Kaur Bains is an Associate Professor, researcher, community educator and consultant in the areas of Indo Canadian Studies. Her current research interests include: migration and integration; cross-cultural education curriculum implementation; race and ethnicity; women’s rights and cultural politics; Diaspora studies, Sikhism and the politics of identity and cultural historiographies.


jillbairdJill R Baird, UBC Museum of Anthropology

Jill Baird, Curator of Education and Public Programs, 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.




photo_upload_2_ooi_e_100288Carol Ballard, North Vancouver Museum and Archives

Carol Ballard is the Education Programmer at the North Vancouver Museum and Archives and has been working in museum education for over ten years. Carol was previously on staff at the Gulf of Georgia Cannery, and organized educational events as the Program Coordinator for the Delta Museum and Archives. Carol is passionate about maritime and local community history in North Vancouver. She loves working with children and youth, and in her spare time is a unit leader for the Girl Guides of Canada.


photo_upload_beer_r_100476Ruth S Beer, Emily Carr University of Art+Design

Ruth Beer is interested in artistic research and gallery/museum collaborations. Her artwork including sculpture, video and weavings has been presented in national and international exhibitions. She is the recipient of a major SSHRC research and creation grant award (2013-2018), for ?Trading Routes: Grease Trails Oil Pipelines? a project that focuses on the changing landscape of geography and communities due to resource extraction industry development in Northwest BC, through the production of artworks, exhibitions and events. Ruth Beer is an artist, Professor of Visual Art and Assistant Dean of Research in the Faculty of Visual Art and Material Practice at Emily Carr University of Art+Design.


Leah Best, Executive Director, Touchstones NelsonLeah Best, Touchstones Nelson: Museum of Art and History

Leah has over 15 years professional experience working in both museums and art galleries as a curator and director including roles as Assistant Curator at the Vancouver Art Gallery and Curator and Collections Manager at the Delta Museum and Archives. In 2005, she assumed the role of Executive Director of Touchstones Nelson: Museum of Art and History. Ms. Best has served as President of the BC Museums Association, and is a current Board Director for the Osprey Community Foundation as well as being a member of the Social Planning Action Network for Nelson.


Shannon BettlesShannon Bettles, Chilliwack Museum and Archives

Shannon has worked in Museums and Archives since 2001 where she started as a volunteer at the Langley Centennial Museum. She holds a BA from the University of Guelph in Art History, and a Postgraduate Diploma in Museum and Gallery Studies from the University of St. Andrews, Scotland. Shannon has worked in museums, galleries, and archives in Scotland, Ontario and BC. She is currently the Archivist at the Chilliwack Museum and Archives, where she’s been since 2007. She is currently pursuing her Masters of Library and Information Studies degree from the University of Alberta.


photo_upload_bose_n_100202Nikki Bose, Kelowna Museums Society

Nikki Bose is a Conservation Intern working for the Kelowna Museums Society in the Ursula Surtees Regional Conservation Laboratory located in the Okanagan Heritage Museum. During her internship Nikki has filled an important role assisting with the preservation of the collections, giving workshops, cleaning exhibits and conserving damaged artifacts. Nikki has a degree in Archaeology from SFU and a Diploma in Collections Conservation and Management from Fleming College in Ontario.


photo_upload_2_baird_j_100158Pam Brown, Museum of Anthropology

Pam Brown, of Heiltsuk and Tsimshian ancestry, is a curator at MOA. Her expertise includes material culture, collaborative research, and community exhibitions. Pam’s priority is to make museum resources more accessible to Aboriginal artists, Elders, youth, communities, and organizations.




SB headshot colourStephen Bruyneel, Chair, Fraser River Discovery Centre

Stephen graduated from the University of British Columbia in 1988 with a Master of Arts degree in Political Science. Since 2009, following a successful career in the corporate sector, Stephen has provided a full range of senior-level public affairs and communications services to provincial Crown Corporations and Agencies, resource and energy companies, the transportation and infrastructure industry, the clean technology sector, regional and local governments, associations and not for profits. Stephen has always been actively involved “giving” back to the community. Currently that includes being Chair of the Fraser River Discovery Centre and a member of the Board of Directors of the New Westminster Chamber of Commerce.


CoreyBrysonCorey Bryson, Chief Preparator & Technician, Art Gallery of Greater Victoria

Corey Bryson is currently the Chief Preparator & Technician at the Art Gallery of Greater Victoria, and has been working in a similar capacity for the past 10 years. His experience includes, the installation and de-installation of a contemporary and historical art and artifact based exhibitions, and audio visual exhibitions (both within and outside of a traditional gallery setting). In addition, Corey also possesses years of experience creating custom storage containers and crates to house and ship fine art. A passionate museum and gallery professional, Corey prides himself in the role Preparators play in the preservation and public enjoyment of museum collections..


oanaOana Capota, New Westminster Museum

Oana has a Bachelor’s degree in art history and Chinese language from the University of British Columbia and a Diploma of Cultural Resource Management from the University of Victoria. Prior to joining the New Westminster Museum, Oana worked at the Port Moody Station Museum and at the Surrey Museum and completed an academic internship with the Burnaby Village Museum.  She served at New Westminster Museum and Archives as Museum Curator/Heritage Programmer from 2011 to 2014, and as Curator since early 2014. As Curator, Oana is passionate about introducing more diversity to the Museum, especially from those of underrepresented communities.


photo_upload_2_strangergaley_y_100164Jacqueline Chambers, 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 is currently working on a M.Ed. in Museum Education at UBC.


Zhongping ChenDr. Zhongping Chen

Zhongping Chen is a professor of Chinese history and the history of the global Chinese diaspora. He has published dozens of journal articles and four books in Chinese and English, including Modern China’s Network Revolution: Chambers of Commerce and Sociopolitical Change in the Early Twentieth Century (Stanford: CA: Stanford University Press, 2011). He has been the principal director of the federally-funded project for the website: “Victoria’s Chinatown: A Gateway to the Past and Present of Chinese Canadians” (

Now, He has been working on a new book entitled “Reform and Revolution in the Transpacific Chinese Diaspora, 1884-1918.


hanna_bwHanna Cho, Producer & Project Manager, 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. Hanna joined Council in 2013, and has served as co-chair of the Innovation Committee since 2014. As a Producer for NGX Interactive, she creates digital interactive storytelling experiences for museums, discovery centres, exhibitions, and other community-based 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”. Hanna holds degrees in History and Communications from the University of Ottawa (B.A.), and obtained her M.A. in Communication & Culture at York University (Toronto).


photo_upload_3_beer_r_100476Rebecca Clarke, Gulf of Georgia Museum National Historic Site

Rebecca Clarke is the Executive Director for the Gulf of Georgia Cannery Society, operating the Gulf of Georgia Cannery National Historic Site. Rebecca brings a passion for industrial history and public engagement to her work. Building on a Master?s degree in Sociology of Education from UBC, Rebecca worked in education for almost 20 years, teaching pre-schoolers to adults. Her experience at the Port Moody Station Museum and the Museum of Vancouver, allowed Rebecca to focus her educational work in the field of history and learn the work of museums from collecting artifacts, to creating exhibits and co-editing a history book.


photo_upload_clausen_k_99585Kirstin Clausen, Britannia Mine Museum

Kirstin has worked in museums since 1984. For 5 years she was the Director/Curator of a smaller community museum in northern Alberta. For 10 years she was the Educator at the bustling Langley Centennial Museum. She became the Britannia Mine Museum?s Executive Director/CEO in 2003 after 3 years as its Managing Curator. She is mindful of excellence in non profit management and currently she is responsible for the implementation of long term strategic plans relating to the Museum programs and services. In her 10 years at the Museum there has been $20M in investment for infrastructure and new exhibits. Visitation has grown from 25,000 to over 70,000. The Museum operates with a mix of imperatives including tourism, education, and cultural heritage while being a Museum with a specific topic of interest.


photo_upload_walsh_a_100554Bradley Clements, University of Victoria

Bradley Clements is an undergraduate student of Anthropology and Applied Ethics, interested in the role of cultural institutions in colonialism and, potentially, in anti-colonial movements.  His research at the Alberni Valley Museum’s exhibit “We Are All One,” curated by Dr. Walsh and the Alberni IRS Survivors whose art was displayed, looks at the experiences of this collaboration for Survivors, visitors and museum staff. This research has led Clements to argue that museums and exhibits can act as reconciliatory spaces, provided that represented indigenous communities are empowered in them through resourcing, trust, and repatriation.  Clements has also worked with the RIDSAR collective since 2013 and as an Assistant Curator at the Legacy Art Gallery this past summer.


photo_upload_2_walsh_a_100554Deborah Cook

Deborah Cook is a Nisga’a Nation woman who attended the Alberni Indian Residential School as a youth. She married Jack Cook and is now a member of the Huu-ay-aht Nation and is an active member of her family and community. For many years Deborah has research and collected historical photographs from the Alberni IRS and other schools in BC. She is known in communities as a knowledge keeper of information around 1000s of images, and is also a valuable member of the RIDSAR research collective through her involvement in the Alberni paintings research.


photo_upload_cullen_j_99322Jim Cullen, W. Jim Cullen Consulting Services

Jim Cullen has consulted in strategic and business planning, human resources management and facilitation since 2003. His career spans nearly three decades in human resources and general management in the corporate and non-profit sectors and includes leadership of strategic and business plans with numerous Canadian museums, historic sites and non-profit organizations. Jim holds an Honours Business degree with distinction from the University of Western Ontario, completed the Getty’s Museum Management Institute program in 2002 and is a Certified Human Resources Practitioner. Jim has been a member of several non-profit boards including the Foothills Land Trust, Strategic Capability Network, Reynolds-Alberta Museum Advisory Board, Canadian Council for Rail Heritage. He is currently a member of the Calgary Heritage Authority.


photo_upload_baird_j_100158Francine Cunningham, Independent Artist & Writer

Francine Cunningham is an Aboriginal author and educator. Francine offers creative writing and visual art workshops to help youth express their ideas and feelings surrounding issues of identity. She is working on her first novel and collection of short stories.




Luc - work photoLuc Desmarais, North Vancouver Museum and Archives

Originally from Ontario, I  am a graduate of the Fleming College Museum Management and Curatorship program, and eventually found my way to the beautiful B.C. coast. So far I’ve had a varied and interesting career working in collections and exhibits, from Campbell River, to the Museum of Anthropology, to the Vancouver Art Gallery, and the North Vancouver Museum and Archives. 



photo_upload_donaldson_s_98223Sue Donaldson, BC Arts Council

Sue Donaldson is a program officer with the BC Arts Council in Victoria where she works with about 200 museums, visual arts organizations and aboriginal cultural centres across the province each year. Before coming to the BC Arts Council in 2004, she was a grant contractor with the BCMA & worked in both artist-run centres & museums in BC where she wrote many, many grant applications.



photo_upload_dunn_h_99170Heather J Dunn, Canadian Heritage Information Network

Heather Dunn began her museum career at the Morse Museum and Cultural Centre in Morse, Saskatchewan. Her work in the area of museum collections management and documentation continued at the Saskatchewan Western Development Museum, the Kenderdine Gallery, the Royal Ontario Museum, the Toronto Historical Board, and the Museum of London, England. She completed a Masters degree in Museum Studies at the University of Toronto and has been with the Canadian Heritage Information Network (CHIN) since 1995. Heather is based in Victoria, BC. She specializes in museum information standards.


photo_upload_fast_b_100131Ben Fast, BCMA, Heritage BC, Royal Roads University

Ben Fast is a museum and heritage tourism worker currently completing a Master of Arts in Tourism Management from Royal Roads University. Having worked in museums and tourist attractions in his native Victoria and in France, Ben has a wide variety of experiences in the heritage tourism field. Ben is passionate about museum partnerships and collaboration, moving the industry forward with innovative technology projects, and making museums central to their local communities. He is also a musician, photographer and writer who enjoys good sushi and spending time by the coast. Connect with Ben on Twitter: @benfaster


photo_upload_francis_m_100276Matthew Francis, Chilliwack Museum and Archives

Matthew Francis took on the role of Executive Director of the Chilliwack Museum & Archives in February 2015, after ten years in the built heritage conservation field. He holds an MA degree from the University of Manchester. Matthew led the Government of Alberta’s municipal heritage engagement initiatives, managing the Alberta Main Street Program’s network of 25 historic commercial districts, and he developed the Municipal Heritage Partnership Program from the ground up, fostering culture-sector links with museums, urban planners, and place-makers. Matthew is very pleased to join the BC Museums community, and to return to his hometown of Chilliwack.



Tom Gooden, Assistant Curator, Burnaby Museum

Tom’s first museum job was as a cataloger at the Glenbow Museum in Calgary. His interest in museums followed his interest in model building and a curiosity about how things work. In the mid-1980s Glenbow was one of the museums that partnered with the Canadian Heritage Information Network (CHIN) to add collections records to a national database. We manually keyed in some 80,000 records to the mainframe computer in Ottawa. Tom returned to BC in 1991 and took a UVIC extension course on computer information systems. Lots of data had been entered into computers with very little thought about how to get it out.


Viviane Gosselin, Museum of Vancouver

Viviane Gosselin is Curator of Contemporary Culture at the Museum of Vancouver and Associate Researcher. Her doctoral research examined how frameworks associated with the discourse on the pedagogy of historical thinking help conceptualize the experience of exhibition makers and museum visitors. Her research interests include intercultural curation, citizen-curation, and critical museology. She was a member of the exhibit team for c̓əsnaʔəm, the city before the city and co-curator for the exhibit at the Museum of Vancouver.


photo_upload_gough_k_98427Kim Gough, Royal British Columbia Museum

Kim has worked in museum programming for 19 years. Her work for the Royal BC Museum has included school programs, feature exhibitions, volunteer training, gallery interpretation and the development of a smartphone app. Kim’s focus now is to develop more opportunities to explore the collections, learn new skills and encourage dialogue and reflection.




larissagrantLarissa Grant, Musqueam, Treaty, Lands and Reources

Larissa Grant is a researcher in the Treaty, Lands and Resources Department of the Musqueam First Nation who is actively involved in community outreach. With her colleagues, she developed and co-ordinated Musqueam?s community planning process. This resulted in Musqueam?s Comprehensive Sustainable Community Development Plan ? We Speak with One Heart and Mind. She was a member of the exhibit team for c̓əsnaʔəm, the city before the city and co-curator for the exhibit at the Musqueam Cultural Education and Resource Centre.


photo_upload_2_beer_r_100476Kit Grauer, University of British Columbia, Faculty of Education

Kit Grauer is Professor Emerita of Art and Museum Education at the University of British Columbia. Kit has been involved in presenting and writing about museum education for the past twenty years. In the past decade, with her former doctoral students, Cheryl Mezaros and Jill Baird, she developed intensive Museum Education Teacher Institutes at the Vancouver Art Gallery and the Museum of Anthropology. Kit was also on the team that developed the Museum Masters program at UBC and taught the first cohort through to completion. Her graduate students are now museum professional throughout British Columbia. Currently she serves as Vice Chair on the board of the Gulf of Georgia Cannery Society and is Chair of the Programs and Exhibits Committee. She also has two Social Sciences and Humanities Council of Canada Research grants and teaches with her husband, Peter Scurr (also retired) at Elder College and on contract, when she is not involved with art making at their studio on Galiano.


photo_upload_greenaway_a_98981Aimee Greenaway, Nanaimo Museum

Aimee Greenaway is the Interpretation Curator at the Nanaimo Museum. She is a 6th generation Nanaimo resident and grew up in the former coal mining town of Extension. Aimee graduated from Malaspina University-College in 2002 with a Bachelors of Arts in History and a Bachelor of Education. She worked at the BC Forest Discovery Centre from 2006-2011 and wrote a column on logging history in the Cowichan Valley Citizen.



Tracey Herbert, First Peoples’ Cultural Council

Tracey Herbert, (BFA) is a member of St’uxwtews First Nation, Bonaparte Band, in Cache Creek. With 24 years’ experience in the administration of First Nations community programs in British Columbia, since 2003 she has been the Executive Director of the First Peoples’ Cultural Council, a Crown agency with the mandate to revitalize First Nations languages, arts and cultures in B.C. Tracey has been a consultant on CIDA projects in Africa and China, and previously served as Band Councillor for the Bonaparte Band, and worked as a Strategic Planner at Indian and Northern Affairs Canada, and a Community Health Officer at the First Nations and Inuit Health Branch.


photo_upload_3_strangergaley_y_100164Linda Jennings, Beaty Biodiversity Museum

Linda Jennings is the Assistant Curator at the University of British Columbia Herbarium, Beaty Biodiversity Museum, where she cares for, teaches about, and supports research with UBC’s century old collection of British Columbian, Canadian and worldly plants. She earned both her B.Sc. and M.Sc. from UBC and holds a certificate in Professional Specialization in Collections Management. Linda has had a long time interest in the history of Botany, especially the collectors and their collections. She teaches the Intermediate and Advanced Master Gardeners Botany of Vancouver courses and is currently the co-President of the Native Plant Society of British Columbia.


photo_upload_kerr_k_100568Kate Kerr, Royal BC Museum

Kate Kerr is currently working on a Masters in Community Development while working in the Exhibits Department of the Royal BC Museum. She is combining her experience from her career in galleries and museums with current ideas in the social sciences about community connections and inclusivity and the roles and responsibilities of museums.



photo_upload_kerr_m_100154Mairin Kerr, Beaty Biodiversity Museum

Mairin is a digital storyteller. She uses a variety of mediums to tell her museum’s story- social media, web content, blog posts, press releases, advertisements, graphic design, and events. Mairin has a Masters of Museum Studies from the University of Toronto and has worked at some of the most prestigious art institutions in the world – the V&A Museum in London and the J. Paul Getty Museum in LA. Mairin writes a blog about the interface between museum education and digital media,, which has been featured in the AAM’s Center for the Future of Museum’s e-newsletter and the NMC Horizon report.


ShannonKingShannon King, Director of Education, Fraser River Discovery Centre

Shannon King is the Director of Education at the Fraser River Discovery Centre where she has worked since 2009. She holds a Masters’ degree in Archaeology from Simon Fraser University and a Bachelor of Arts in International Development Studies and Anthropology from the University of Toronto. Her career in education includes work at the Delta Museum and Archives, Craigflower Historic Site, Haney House Museum, and as a teaching assistant in the Toronto and Victoria school districts.


photo_upload_4_beer_r_100476Karen Lee, Gulf of Georgia Cannery Society

Karen has a passion for social history and education. As Public Programs Manager at the Gulf of Georgia Cannery, Karen manages exhibit development and public programs. Karen is a certified teacher with an M.A. in Museum Studies.




jaredJared Korb

Jared is an interdisciplinary designer with training in product design. He’s most fascinated by the relationships between human behaviour and everyday objects, contextualized within the built environment. Through user-centred design research methods, he searches for opportunities to meet existing needs and create desirable futures. Jared’s experience with local Vancouver-based businesses in the technology, product design, and architecture sectors. He also works as a design facilitator with the Vancouver Design Nerds, engaging local communities in collaborative problem solving.


Website Staff Portraits

Ember Lundgren, Royal BC Museum, New Archives and Digital Preservation

Ember Lundgren is the Preservation Manager at the Royal BC Museum and Archives. With a background in Archives Collection Management and Film Preservation her main focus is magnetic media, digital preservation and online access. Ember is a strong advocate of citizen science and all-things crowdsourced.



mitraMitra Mansour-Tehrani

Mitra is a Vancouver-based Interdisciplinary Designer, Creative Strategist, Researcher, and Facilitator with a background in Art, Communication, Architecture and Urban Design. She is the founder of Creative Room, a collaborative interdisciplinary design studio and research laboratory. Mitra also currently serves as the Director of Community Engagement and Facilitator with the Vancouver Design Nerds, is Co-director of Civic Renewal Lab, and sits on the City of Vancouver Public Art Committee as liaison to the Arts and Culture Policy Council.

Mansour’s practice has led her to the creation of and advocacy for better design through community engagement, social impact design, and public interest design with a focus on sustainable environments and models.


photo_upload_mathieson_c_100392Chris Mathieson, Grist Mill and Gardens Historic Site

At heart, Chris is a storyteller with a passion for the stories of people, places and objects, having spent the last fifteen years working in the museum field?currently as the operator / manager of the Grist Mill and Gardens Provincial Historic Site in Keremeos, BC. Beginning as a front-line heritage interpreter (and blacksmith), he has since had the chance to interpret and educate on subjects as varied as heritage food skills, classical Chinese architecture, the history of brothels in Vancouver, and the modern rituals of death.


Rob McCullough, New Westminster Museum, Cultural Services

Rob has been helping people find something new and interesting in the most unexpected places for close to 20 years, and is passionate about creating enlightening, engaging, and entertaining cultural experiences for museum visitors. After earning a Bachelor of Anthropology and Geography from the University of Winnipeg, and a postgraduate diploma in Museum Management and Curatorship, Rob spent several years at Parks Canada, Canadian Museums Association, and Royal BC Museum. More recently, he has been back and forth across the Fraser River in curator and management roles with Surrey Museum and New Westminster Museum.


lesleymooreLesley Moore, General Manager, North Pacific Cannery National Historic Site

Lesley currently is the General Manager of the North Pacific Cannery National Historic Site in Port Edward, B.C. She has worked in the culture and heritage sector her entire career in positions that centred on the development and revitalization of heritage organizations to be relevant to, and actively engaged with, their communities.

“I believe museums bring together “people” and “place” through capturing stories and preserving artifacts, recognizing the diverse voices in their communities, bridging cultural traditions, sharing knowledge, and sparking awareness and engagement through collections,exhibitions and programs. Museums offer continuity through time with ever-changing contexts.”

Her enthusiasm and involvement with the Provincial Heritage Fair Program began in 2000 as Co-coordinator of the TFU (Teaching for Understanding History) network, a two year project that worked with BC Museums Association members, the BC Ministry of Education, the BC Heritage Branch, 6 School Districts, the University of British Columbia and Simon Fraser University Faculties of Education, the BC Social Studies Teachers’ Association, and teachers and museum professionals who provided the leadership and energy to create Lesson Plans using local heritage collections. The lesson plans in turn served as catalysts for regional, school, and class heritage fair projects and the expansion of the provincial program.


Magdalena Moore

Magdalena has a B.A. in History from Simon Fraser University with significant courses in visual arts and an M.A. in Canadian History from the University of British Columbia. She specializes in exhibit development and production, and collection management. Magdalena’s over fifteen years working in museums includes notable stints conducting research for permanent exhibits for the Museum of Vancouver; organizing loans, documentation and artifact movement at the UBC Museum of Anthropology; and most recently as collection manager at the North Vancouver Museum and Archives where she reinvigorated the stewardship of the collection. For a new permanent exhibit at NVMA on outdoor recreation, she interviewed participants and sourced images and artifacts from community members. Her current enthusiasm in museums is talking to community members about their passion projects.


J MortonJamie Morton, Alberni Valley Museum

Jamie Morton is the Manager of Museum, Heritage & Culture for the City of Port Alberni. He holds a Ph.D. in History from the University of Victoria and has a background in public history, museum curation, and college & university teaching. His work has focused primarily on the fur trade, and on the social and industrial history of BC.




photo_upload_ooi_e_100288Emily Ooi, Richmond Museum & Heritage Services

Emily is the Educational Programs Coordinator of the Richmond Museum, with the City of Richmond. She holds a Bachelor of Arts in History and Bachelor of Education in Secondary Social Studies, and is currently pursuing a Master of Museum Education, from the University of British Columbia. Emily also sits on the Richmond School District’s Aboriginal Education Enhancement Agreement Committee, is the Co-Organizer of the BC Field Trip, and is Co-Chair of the Lower Mainland Museum Educators group.



profile_Catherine_Ouellet-Martin_headshotCatherine Ouellet-Martin, Executive Director, Fraser River Discovery Centre

Catherine is Executive Director at the Fraser River Discovery Centre. She has earned a Bachelor of Arts degree in History and a Post Baccalaureate Diploma in Public History from Simon Fraser University and has done archaeology and anthropology field studies in Europe. She joined the Fraser River Discovery Centre in September 2008 as Executive Director, a role that allows her to apply her passion for cultural organizations to the rich diversity of themes of the Fraser River. Catherine is also Vice President of Tourism New Westminster, Council Member of the BCMA and a member of the Gold Rush Trail Corridor Management Plan Committee.


Lana Panko, City of Surrey, Heritage Services

Lana Panko has over 20 years of experience as a Museum Curator working for City, Provincial and Federal Governments specializing in exhibitions, programming and all areas of collections management. Deaccessioning has been a regular part of her work plan during her time in Surrey.




KPetrusa June 30Kate Petrusa, Simon Fraser University/White Rock Museum & Archives

Kate is the curator at the White Rock Museum and Archives. She supported the curation Our Working Waterfront, 1945-2015 exhibit, by worked closely with the New Westminster Museum, Simon Fraser University and various community partners. She developed 3 school programs and several public programs to expand the exhibit themes. Kate has a Master of Anthropology and Master of Museum Education from the University of British Columbia, where she looked closely at representations of farming in the Fraser Valley and southwestern BC. Prior to this exhibition, Kate curated 2 exhibitions at the BC Farm Museum in Fort Langley, BC.


photo_upload_politano_m_98676Matt Politano, Oculus Design + Marketing

Matt is a CGD™ Certified designer and has over 15 years of experience in design and branding. He helps organizations understand their brands & turn that understanding into effective, well-designed visual communications. He’s the owner of Oculus Design + Marketing, a small studio that crafts compelling brand experiences across a wide range of touchpoints; experiences that people remember, respond to, and share. When he’s not in a branding workshop, Matt leads a double life as a artist, exhibiting at several galleries.



anna_rambow_photoAnna Rambow, Cumberland Museum and Archives

Coming from a diverse background including Arts and Cultural Management, Media, and Photography, Anna Rambow has worked in number of Arts Administration and Community Animation roles. She is currently the Executive Director of the Cumberland Museum and Archives.




photo_upload_4_walsh_a_100554Jennifer Robinson, University of Victoria, Anthropology

Jennifer Robinson holds a MA in Material and Visual Culture from University College London and a BA in Anthropology and History from the University of British Columbia. Since 2007 she has been working closely with heritage professionals, community elders, artists, performers, educators, and researchers at a number of galleries and museums both nationally and internationally, in areas ranging from collections management, archival research, education and public programming, and curatorial practice. Jennifer is currently a fourth-year PhD Candidate in Visual Anthropology and Materiality at the University of Victoria in the Department of Anthropology. Through interviews with heritage professionals from museums and galleries form across Canada her doctoral research assess the various strategies and challenges of curating and exhibiting difficult subject matter related to human rights violations that have occurred in Canada.


photo_upload_rowley_s_100243Susan Rowley, University of British Columbia, 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 is a member of the Reciprocal Research Network (RRN) Steering Group. Most recently she was a member of the exhibit team for c̓əsnaʔəm, the city before the city and co-curator for the exhibit at MOA. Her personal research interests include public archaeology, material culture studies, representation, repatriation, intellectual property rights and access to information on cultural heritage.


Susan Roy, University of Waterloo, History

Susan Roy is an Assistant Professor in the History Department at the University of Waterloo. Her publication These Mysterious People: Shaping History and Archaeology in a Northwest Coast Community details the relationship between the Musqueam First Nation and researchers from the late-nineteenth century to the present focusing on c̓əsnaʔəm. She was a member of the exhibit team for c̓əsnaʔəm, the city before the city and co-curator for the exhibit at the Museum of Vancouver.


photo_upload_sandhra_s_99206Sharanjit K Sandhra, University of the Fraser Valley and University of British Columbia

Sharanjit Kaur Sandhra works as Coordinator at the Centre for Indo Canadian Studies located in the University of the Fraser Valley. Sharanjit is also in her first year of PhD studies in the Department of History at UBC where her interests include: the affective experiences of Sikh migration to BC in the early 20th century in relation to issues of race. Sharanjit also has a keen interest in the intersections of community and public histories through her curating exhibitions at the Sikh Heritage Museum located in the National Historic Site of Canada, Gur Sikh Temple in Abbotsford, BC.


Tusa PhotoTusa Shea, Cultural Resource Management Programs, UVic

Receiving her PhD in Art History in 2012, Dr. Shea is presently the Program Coordinator for the Cultural Resource Management Program at the University of Victoria. Her scholarly work includes a focus on culture, gender, and Indigeneity.




Leona Sparrow, Musqueam, Treaty, Lands and Resources

Leona M. Sparrow in the Director of Treaty, Land and Resources for the Musqueam First Nation. The Treaty Directorate is responsible for the provision of a comprehensive treaty and land claims program, including all necessary research and development. She has a Masters? degree in Anthropology and a Law degree, both from UBC.  She currently serves on several Aboriginal service providers? boards and committees including the Vancouver Aboriginal Child and Family Services Society, the New Relationship Trust, the Museum of Anthropology. She also serves as Musqueam’s liaison to UBC. She was a member of the exhibit team for c̓əsnaʔəm, the city before the city and co-curator for the exhibit at the Musqueam Cultural Education and Resource Centre.


Erika StensonErika Stenson, Royal BC Museum

Erika joined the Royal BC Museum in 2010, bringing extensive experience in marketing and business development in both the private and public sectors. She is an alumnus of Harvard Business School, is a communications and advertising accredited professional, and has a Liberal Arts Diploma. Erika currently serves on the Boards of the BC Museum Association and Tourism Victoria. As Head of Marketing and Business Development, Erika is responsible for building strategic business development initiatives, media relations and corporate communications, publishing, consumer research and other related activities. She also lead the planning and  implementation of the current Royal BC Museum fundraising and sponsorship initiatives.


photo_upload_petrusa_k_99679Pamela Stern, Simon Fraser University

Pamela Stern is the guest curator for Our Working Waterfront, 1945-2015. She is a sociocultural anthropologist in the Department of Sociology and Anthropology at Simon Fraser University. She conducts research on the connection between employment and the substantive qualities of citizenship in several parts of Canada.




photo_upload_strangergaley_y_100164Yukiko K Stranger-Galey, Beaty Biodiversity Museum

Yukiko Stranger-Galey is the Exhibits Manager for the Beaty Biodiversity Museum at the University of British Columbia, where she develops exhibits that celebrate the wonder and diversity of the natural world. She holds a B.Sc. in Biochemistry from the University of Edinburgh and a M.Sc. in Microbiology from the University of Chicago. While working in the lab, she uncovered a passion for sharing her research with the public and this set her on a journey communicating science in different arenas. The opportunity to share the stories of the people, organisms, and objects in our world inspires her every day.


photo_upload_sugrue_m_100630Meagan Sugrue, Royal BC Museum

Meagan Sugrue joined the Royal BC Museum in 2014 as the Web & E-Commerce Specialist. Meagan is passionate about delivering innovative, dynamic web content. She has an extensive background in communications, and operates on the principle that user-centered design is the only worthwhile design.




Michelle TaylorMichelle Taylor, City of New Westminster, Museum & Archives

Michelle has a Bachelor’s degree in history from Simon Fraser University and holds a Masters of Museum Studies from the University of Toronto where her research focused on Issues in Canadian identity, community engagement and cultural memory. She is responsible for the research, development, implementation, promotional copy and evaluation of a variety of heritage programs at New Westminster Museum & Archives (NWMA). Previous to NWMA, Michelle worked at Britannia Mine Museum, Place Des Arts, Museum of Vancouver and Langley Centennial Museum. Michelle is enthusiastic about the unique ability museums have to facilitate meaning-making for visitors of all ages and abilities.


photo_upload_3_walsh_a_100554Andrea N Walsh, University of Victoria

Andrea N. Walsh, PhD is a visual anthropologist at the University of Victoria, specializing in 20th century and contemporary Indigenous visual and material culture and curating. She directs UVIC’s Salish Visiting Artist Program and a SSHRC research program about residential school art collections Canada. Walsh was inducted as an Honorary Witness to the Truth and Reconciliation Commission in 2012. She has recently curated exhibits at the Legacy Art Gallery (2013), the Alberni Valley Museum (2014/15), and the Campbell River Art Gallery (2015).



martinwMartin Warkentin, University of the Fraser Valley

Martin Warkentin has been the copyright librarian at the University of the Fraser Valley (UFV) since 2014, and has worked in various other capacities at UFV including electronic resources management, liaison to a number of academic departments, and in public services. He holds a Bachelor of Arts in history from UFV, and a Master of Library and Information Studies from the University of British Columbia (UBC). Martin has worked as a reference services and instruction librarian at UBC, Simon Fraser University, Vancouver Public Library, and Douglas College. He has a keen interest in local Fraser Valley history, and is currently involved in a newspaper digitisation project at the UFV Library.



Cathi Charles WherryCathi Charles Wherry, First Peoples’ Cultural Council

Cathi Charles Wherry, (BFA) is Anishnaabekwe, and a member of Rama Mnjikaning First Nation. She is a visual artist and curator, with projects including: invincible spirit (1995), earthy gestures (2001), and Transporters: Contemporary Salish Art (2007). She served on the Kakaekwewin Aboriginal Advisory for Canada Council for the Arts from 2010-13. Since 1996 Cathi has worked as Art Programs Manager for First Peoples’ Cultural Council, a First Nations directed agency mandated to support First Nations languages, arts and cultures in B.C. In 2013 Cathi was awarded a Queen’s Diamond Jubilee Medal in recognition of her work with Aboriginal artists and communities.


Jordan Wilson, University of British Columbia, Museum of Anthropology

Jordan Wilson is a graduate student and co-curator of the exhibit c̓əsnaʔəm, the city before the city, at the Museum of Anthropology. He’s of European and Indigenous ancestry, and a member of the Musqueam First Nation. He is currently in the Masters of Arts program in the Department of Anthropology, University of British Columbia. His research interests include community collaboration and Indigenous-museum relationships, issues of representation, material culture studies, Indigenous art history, community/oral history, and Indigenous/community-based research. Jordan has spent time researching and receiving training at the Smithsonian Institution in Washington DC, the University of Tromsø in Norway, and at the Indian Arts Research Center at the School for Advanced Research in Santa Fe, NM.


Jason Woolman, Musqueam, Treaty, Lands and Resources

Jason Woolman is the Senior Archivist for the Musqueam First Nation. He is also a PhD student in the Department of Anthropolgy at UBC. His research interests include the study of language and the relationship of language to places, and place names. His thesis will explore knowing who you are and where you come from as a core concept in the understanding of Musqueam identity and situating oneself socially and regionally. He was a member of the exhibit team for c̓əsnaʔəm, the city before the city and co-curator for the exhibit at the Museum of Vancouver.


photo_upload_ziegler_b_100629Ben Ziegler

Ben Ziegler is a conflict management and collaboration specialist. He works as an independent mediator and consultant. He has extensive experience as virtual facilitator; as online mediator, leading global virtual teams, and designing online collaborative processes for the BC government and non-profit sectors. Previously he spent 14 years as a consultant in the high-tech sector. He has authored multiple e-books on collaboration, maintains a blog on collaboration-related topics,, and offers a self-paced e-learning course on virtual collaboration. A fan of vibrant neighbourhoods, Ben is active in a number of local nonprofit organizations.