Meet some of Guelph Dance’s Board Members!

In this blog we learn about our Board Members! This committed team are always willing to answer questions about their vested interest in Guelph Dance. With a range of experience and backgrounds, each shared a bit of their story and their involvement with Guelph Dance. 

Heather Finn

“I’ve been a Board Member for just over a year. I fell in love with site specific performance and with Goldie Mill Park when I danced in the Festival with Hamilton Dance Company in 2002 and 2003.  Little did I know that ten years later I’d be living in the neighbourhood and on the Board of Guelph Dance!”

Heather’s Background:

“I took my first dance class in a church basement in my hometown of Elmira, and haven’t stopped dancing since. I studied ballet at Academy of Dance Waterloo, modern and break dance at McMaster University Centre for Dance, and danced professionally in Hamilton and Ottawa. I am currently a physiotherapist at Speed River Physiotherapy with a special interest in dancer’s health and in improving communication between dancers, dance educators, and health care professionals.”

Why are donations important for an organization like us?
To use dance terminology, our donors keep us “grounded”. They build the foundation of our organization, both with their time and with monetary donations.  Our donors also fuel us to ‘share [our] vision, push creative boundaries and engage community audiences.'”

Heather contributes her time, money, ideas, and enthusiasm to Guelph Dance. “Contributing to Guelph Dance fuels my passion for dance and allows me to share this passion not only with the dancers I dance with, but with my entire community here in Guelph.”

Lynda Walters

Lynda has been with Guelph Dance for 4 years. Lynda says Guelph Dance “provides an avenue for my interests, talents, and energies to help present and preserve (video) my passion for performance art.”

Lynda’s background: 
“I have a Fine Art Degree from University of Guelph. This expanded to include art performance and multimedia. I also taught dance at University of Guelph.”

Donations to Guelph Dance:
“Donors are the lifeblood of charities such as Guelph Dance. Regular funding can be unreliable so community support is essential for both creative expression and education.”

Lynda’s Contribution:
“Through my volunteer position as a videographer I get to preserve this ‘time space art form’ of dance in Guelph. Dance only exists in the moment, then it’s gone. I preserve that moment through video record keeping.”

Neal Kennard

Neal is our newest Board Member, being with us for a few short months. Neal is a “professional fundraiser and has worked in the non-profit sector for a number of large national charities.

“I attended last year’s festival and immediately appreciated what the festival brought to the community and knew I needed to get involved at some capacity.”

When Neal was asked what keeps him on the board, he answered “My appreciation for dance and knowing what I can bring to the organization to help them grow and continue to promote dance in the community.”

Importance of Donations:
Donations are important to keep the good work of Guelph Dance going, not only for keeping the festival which is an important part of our community going, but also the year round activities and community outreach that Guelph Dance is involved in. 

What does Guelph Dance mean to you?
“Guelph Dance is important to me because I think it is important to bring awareness, appreciation and support of dance through education, accessibility and exposure. All things that Guelph Dance does in order to contribute to our community.”
What do you contribute to the organization? 
“I bring a fresh perspective on fundraising and reaching out and marketing to new audiences as well as past supporters.”

Michelle Miller

What Guelph Dance means to Michelle:
I have been a board member for 4 years. I have been a huge supporter since the festival’s inception! Guelph Dance is energetic, embracing new artistic visions and ideas. Willing to take risks and explore new boundaries. Supporting excellence in dance.

“I was drawn to Guelph Dance because of love for Contemporary Dance.
I stay because I share their vision of supporting excellence in dance, challenging the norm and pushing the boundaries.”

Michelle’s Background and Contribution to Guelph Dance: 
“I did my BA in Theater and have worked in craft and design my whole life.
I offer my skills for helping with their merchandising. I usually help when there is need for new marketing, I add my eye for design.
I also like to think that I add enthusiasm and passion to the event itself by helping host artists and get people excited about the event. Kind of like a team cheerleader.”
Importance of Donations:
“I believe donations to our organization are important because it helps to create a very supportive community. I believe in the concept that it takes a community to build a nation. We are all responsible for what our community are and can become.”

Lynda Murray

Lynda has been with Guelph Dance for 2 years – one as a consultant and one as a board member. Lynda has a background in Marketing, Branding, and Strategic Planning. To Lynda, Guelph Dance means “A passion for active creativity and community engagement.”

Lynda was drawn to Guelph Dance by:
 “The commitment of the leadership to evolve and change  constantly pushing the boundaries.”
Importance of Donations:
 “As a non-profit organization donors are essential to enhancing the quality of work we do and the impact we have on our community.”

Thank you!

In the spirit of Giving Tuesday we would like to thank our Board Members for their ongoing time and support! 

A big thank you to all our supporters in the community! 

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