Launching our Executive Leadership Program

July 7, 2020

Announcing the Launch of the Business / Arts Executive Leadership Program

A one-year program to elevate Canada’s current arts leaders 

Toronto, ON (July 7, 2020) – Business / Arts is thrilled to launch our inaugural Executive Leadership program, which pairs 10 participants with 10 key arts leaders for one-on-one, group and peer to peer mentorship sessions, over a one-year period. 

Canadian Heritage, through the Strategic Initiatives component of the Canada Cultural Investment Fund, is investing $75,000 to support this launch. RBC Foundation has provided matched funding to further support the year one roll-out. 

The Business / Arts Executive Leadership program was developed specifically in response to the need to nurture a talent pool of Canadian arts leaders to prepare them to take on leadership roles within some of Canada’s largest arts institutions. It provides current arts leaders with valuable mentorship, knowledge, practical advice and counsel to support their professional development and help them build social capital. 

“The Government of Canada is pleased to support the launch of the Business / Arts Executive Leadership Program,” said the Honourable Steven Guilbeault, Minister of Canadian Heritage. “This $75,000 in funding, as part of our investment in artsvest, is even more important during these uncertain and unprecedented times. It ensures that 10 leaders of arts organizations will access valuable mentorship and knowledge to prepare them to take on leadership roles in the future. By thinking proactively about succession planning, arts and culture organizations are ensuring they have the capacity to keep making a positive impact in the communities they serve.”

“At RBC, we recognize that the arts play an important role in building vibrant communities and strong economies,” said Valerie Chort, Vice-President, Corporate Citizenship, RBC. “Because of the significant impacts of COVID-19, strong leadership in the arts is now more important than ever to help our emerging artists, culture and country recover from the pandemic. We’re proud to partner with Business / Arts to elevate the next generation of Canadian arts leaders at this critical time, and we look forward to watching their careers continue to advance for many years to come.”  

Applications for the Business / Arts Executive Leadership program were vetted through a competitive application process and chosen by a jury of the mentors themselves. Both the participants and mentors in this year’s program represent a wide range of diverse backgrounds, regions and artistic disciplines from across Canada. 

“We are thrilled to launch this Executive Leadership program,” said Candace Elder, National Program Director for Business / Arts’ artsvest program. “When our national call for applications went out, we were overwhelmed by the response, which is a true testament not only to the need and desire for mentorship at the executive level but also to the level of expertise and experience that already exists in our arts sector. Our goal for this program is to strengthen and amplify our arts leadership across Canada.”  

About Business / Arts 

Business / Arts is a national charitable organization that shows the power of partnership between business and arts. Our national mentorship training program artsvest has created nearly 5,000 partnerships between business and arts organizations, raising over $21M in new private sector investment. Combined with matching funds, this has led to an overall impact of $29.25M to Canada’s cultural sector. Through initiatives like the Canadian Arts Summit, we work in partnership with arts leaders, government and the business community to ensure a thriving arts and culture sector. We lead research and advocacy projects to help make the case for the arts. Our arts & business exchange initiative is focused on cultivating and inspiring the next generation of business leaders to partner with the arts. To learn more, visit: www.businessforthearts.org

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