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Premier Furey Officially Launches Come Home Year 2022

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by pmnationtalk on November 15, 2021239 Views

November 15, 2021

The Honourable Andrew Furey, Premier of Newfoundland and Labrador, officially launched Come Home Year 2022 today. Held at The Rooms in St. John’s, performances by Eastern Owl and Shallaway Youth Choir were highlights of the celebratory event, which was attended by key stakeholders from the tourism and hospitality industry and the arts and culture sector.

As part of the event, Rick Mercer and Heidi Bonnell were introduced as the Co-Hosts of Come Home Year 2022. In addition to the Co-Hosts, a Host Committee of distinguished Newfoundland and Labrador ambassadors has been formed to provide direct insight into special events and initiatives held throughout the year.

Members of the Host Committee are:

  • Dwight Ball
  • Petrina Bromley
  • Jeremy Charles
  • Mark Dobbin
  • Alan Doyle
  • Deantha Edmunds
  • Brad Gushue
  • Allan Hawco
  • Liam Hickey
  • Jillian Keiley
  • Colleen Kennedy
  • Paul Pope
  • Charlene Rumbolt
  • Kellie Walsh

Biographies of the Host Committee members can be found in the backgrounder below. Also included in the backgrounder are the mandate of the Host Committee, their objectives, and committee support information.

Announced at the 71st Annual Municipalities Newfoundland and Labrador Conference and Trade Show in Corner Brook at the beginning of November, over $4 million is available through the Special Assistance Fund and the Cultural Economic Development Program in support of Come Home Year 2022. With this funding, Come Home Year will boost the province’s tourism and arts and culture sectors, support community partners and municipalities, bring friends and family home, and welcome newcomers to Newfoundland and Labrador.

Come Home Year will encourage former residents of Newfoundland and Labrador now living away to come home, remind residents of the province of the wonders here in their own ‘backyard,’ and compliment ongoing work to attract and expand ongoing marketing efforts with non-resident visitors. The official launch of Come Home Year fulfils a commitment in the Mandate Letter of the Minister of Tourism, Culture, Arts and Recreation.

Newfoundlanders and Labradorians everywhere can visit and sign up for the Come Home e-newsletter which will share event announcements and information throughout the year. They can also follow ComeHome2022 on Facebook to get up-to-date celebration information.

“There is nothing that quite compares to coming home to Newfoundland and Labrador, and after what we have all been through these last two years of the COVID-19 pandemic, we have earned a proper celebration. Our tourism and hospitality and cultural industries have certainly earned it, and we look forward to continuing to support them as we welcome newcomers and Newfoundlanders and Labradorians around the world for Come Home Year 2022.”
Honourable Andrew Furey
Premier of Newfoundland and Labrador

“When the Premier explained his vision to host a Come Home Year in 2022, I could not have been more excited. This is an opportunity for Newfoundlanders and Labradorians to rally around and support our tourism and hospitality industry and our arts and culture sector. Whether you are coming home, coming here, or exploring your own backyards and communities, we’re looking forward to a banner tourism year.”
Honourable Steve Crocker
Minister of Tourism, Culture, Arts and Recreation

“In all my years of travelling across Canada, I have yet to meet anyone from Newfoundland and Labrador who doesn’t want to come home, either to visit or to live. It’s an easy sell. All we need now is everyone in the province to pick up the phone, send the email, or start the tweets delivering a personal invitation to friends and family to get home out of it. 2022 is the year we are going to make it happen.”
Rick Mercer
Come Home Year 2022 Co-Host

“Our notorious hospitality is our secret weapon. We know Newfoundland and Labrador’s best promoters are Newfoundlanders and Labradorians. Through this initiative, we’re tapping into that resource, encouraging all to share the wonders of our home. As part of Come Home Year 2022, the team assembled will work to curate world class cultural and event experiences.”
Heidi Bonnell
Come Home Year 2022 Co-Host


Learn more

Come Home 2022

Premier Furey Announces Funding in Support of Come Home Year

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Media contacts
Meghan McCabe
Office of the Premier

Adrienne Luther
Tourism, Culture, Arts and Recreation
709-729-4819, 730-2953


Come Home Year 2022 Host Committee Mandate

The Minister of Tourism, Culture, Arts, and Recreation’s Mandate Letter charges the Minister with leading the Provincial Government’s efforts in promoting our creative and cultural industries as a priority growth area in our evolving economy. It also contains direction to launch a Come Home Year 2022 campaign that targets expats and their families. This campaign will also invite others to explore our province and consider making it their home.

A strong cultural identity lies at the foundation of a society’s ability to prosper, grow, and adapt to global change. It is a measure of the quality of life, vitality, and health of a society. The inherent value of culture is the basis for the various ways we create, preserve, promote, and celebrate cultural expression. Participation in cultural activities enriches individual and community life, and promotes social inclusion.

Prior to the global pandemic, the cultural sector supported 2,700 businesses, nearly 5,000 jobs, and contributed $451 million to the province’s GDP (an 18 per cent increase since 2010). The sector plays an important role in economic diversification and providing employment opportunities, especially in rural areas.

In 2020, Newfoundland and Labrador saw 10.8 per cent of active tourism businesses depart the market according to a March 8, 2021 report from Destination Canada, second only to Ontario. The industry employed 6,300 fewer people.

Newfoundlanders and Labradorians are a proud people – no matter where they reside. Come Home Year 2022 will be a re-awakening of the tourism, artistic, cultural, and recreation and sport sectors as we emerge from the COVID-19 pandemic. It will reinvigorate our pride at a critical time in our history. It will also provide an opportunity to increase visitation to our province by visiting friends and relatives and non-residents when coupled with a strengthened non-resident tourism campaign.

To ensure that Come Home Year 2022 is a success, the Premier has convened a volunteer Come Home Year Host Committee to provide strategic and creative advice to the Department of Tourism, Culture, Arts and Recreation on the development, implementation and/or attraction of regional, provincial, and national/international events and initiatives. This team of committed Newfoundlanders and Labradorians will lend their unique knowledge, talent and networks and act as ambassadors in the promotion of the province.

Come Home Year 2022 Host Committee Objectives

  • Provide strategic and creative advice for the upcoming Come Home Year 2022.
  • Identify and provide advice on the attraction of national and international artistic, musical, and sporting events to Newfoundland and Labrador commencing in 2022.
  • Provide advice on a longer-term strategy for special celebrations and event attraction.

Come Home Year 2022 Host Committee Support

Secretariat services to the committee will be provided by staff of the Department of Tourism, Culture, Arts and Recreation. Committee meetings will also be attended by the Deputy Minister and other senior staff as required.

The majority of meetings will be at the call of the Department of Tourism, Culture, Arts and Recreation or the Co-Chairs.  It is expected that meetings will be more frequent upon the initial establishment of the committee, but in general the expectation would be 4-6 meetings a year. Additional meetings that do not require all members may be organized on specific events or initiatives.

Come Home Year 2022 Co-Hosts and Host Committee Members’ Biographies

Rick Mercer (Co-Chair)

Rick Mercer is a Canadian comedian, television personality, political satirist and author. He is a recipient of the Governor General’s Performing Arts Award for lifetime achievement and in 2014 was appointed an Officer of the Order of Canada.

He is best known for his work on the CBC Television comedy shows, This Hour Has 22 Minutes, Made In Canada, and Rick Mercer Report. Mercer has received nearly 30 Gemini Awards and Canadian Screen awards for his work on television. His CBC television special Talking to Americans remains the highest rated Canadian comedy special ever with 2.7 million viewers.

He is the author of five books, all of which have been national best sellers.

He is a native of Middle Cove, Newfoundland and Labrador.

Heidi Bonnell (Co-Chair)

Heidi Bonnell is a Senior Executive at Rogers Communications, Canada’s leading telecommunication and broadcasting corporation.

Prior to joining the company, Heidi spent over a decade with both the Government of Canada and the Government of Newfoundland and Labrador, notably including leadership roles within the Office of the Premier during the planning and delivery of the province’s Cabot, Soiree and Viking 1000 Years celebrations.

Heidi currently serves on the Board of Directors of The Rooms Corporation. She is a past President of the Canadian Club of Ottawa and has served on the Board of Directors of the Canadian Association of Broadcasters, the Rideau Club, Fertile Future and as a Global Advisor for G(irls) 20. She is the founder of Hope Live, a Canadian musical celebration supporting young cancer patients, and a proud member of the National Arts Centre Gala Committee.

Recognized for her service to Canada, she is the recipient of the Queen Elizabeth II Diamond Jubilee Medal.

Heidi is a native of Corner Brook, Newfoundland and Labrador.

Dwight Ball

Dwight Ball served as the 13th Premier of Newfoundland and Labrador from December 2015 to August 2020, and represented the electoral district of Humber – Gros Morne in the House of Assembly.

He has more than 30 years of business ownership experience in health care, real estate development, venture capital and senior home development, and is still actively involved in a number of business partnerships in Newfoundland and Labrador.

He has been recognized by many professional and community groups for his involvement with supportive employment of individuals with disabilities, pharmacist of the year, business leadership, and community and volunteer building.

He was raised in Deer Lake, Newfoundland and Labrador.

Petrina Bromley

Petrina Bromley is an actor, singer, director, writer and composer from St. John’s, Newfoundland and Labrador. She originated the role of Bonnie Harris in the Tony nominated musical COME FROM AWAY, and continues with the show on Broadway.

She made her Stratford Festival debut in 2016 in As You Like It, and was a member of The National Arts Centre, English Theatre Ensemble, 2013-2014.

During the pandemic shutdown, Petrina wrote and performed What Hangs In The Balance, a one-person ghost story inspired by the true story of the last woman hanged in Newfoundland and the contemporary retrial of her case. Filmed for Persistence Theatre in St. John’s, Newfoundland and Labrador, it streamed internationally on in February 2021.

Petrina’s own musical, A Call to Arms, with music by Ged Blackmore, made its debut to sold out houses in St. John’s in 2017. Produced by Atlantic Light Theatre, the musical tells the heart-wrenching, true story of the Norris family from Three Arms Island, Norte Dame Bay, and the enduring sacrifice the country of Newfoundland made in World War I. It has subsequently been filmed for distribution within the Newfoundland and Labrador school system as an educational aid.

Ms. Bromley has an affinity for traditional Newfoundland music and folktales, and has devised two separate theatre pieces to showcase that culture. For several years in the remote community of Cow Head, Newfoundland and Labrador, she curated and directed Neddy Norris Night an evening of traditional folk songs and stories for the Gros Morne Theatre Festival. And in Trinity, Newfoundland and Labrador, for Rising Tide Theatre’s Summer In The Bight Festival, she combined the award-winning photography of Yva Momatiuk and John Eastcott with traditional songs and storytelling techniques to bring the photographers’ book about Newfoundland and Labrador, This Marvellous Terrible Place, to life. It continues to play annually in Trinity.

In January 2022, she will appear in the new CBC/Lionsgate television series Son of A Critch, starring Benjamin Evans Ainsworth (The Haunting Of Bly Manor, Disney’s Pinocchio) and Malcolm MacDowell (Mozart In The Jungle, A Clockwork Orange).

Jeremy Charles

Born in St. John’s, Jeremy moved to Montreal at the age of 19 to pursue culinary arts at St. Pius X Culinary Institute, eventually landing a job at Mediterraneo under Claude Pelletier and Michel Ross. Jeremy’s passion for fly tying and fishing for Atlantic salmon led him to his dream job, working as a chef at a prestigious fishing camp in northern Quebec. He later found himself a regular at the Fulton fish market in Chicago where he worked as a personal chef and honed his skills at many of Chi-Town’s top tables.

Jeremy’s connection to his roots brought him back to his hometown and at the helm of Atlantica in Portugal Cove. In 2010, he went on to open Raymonds with partner Jeremy Bonia. Raymonds consistently ranks among the top restaurants in the country according to Canada’s 100 Best Restaurants list. Jeremy travels regularly participating in culinary events like Cook it Raw, Terroir Symposium, Northern Chefs Alliance and Gold Medal Plates, where Raymonds was the national silver medalist. In 2017, the New York Times called Jeremy a visionary chef and in 2018, he was featured on Anthony Bourdain’s Parts Unknown television series

Jeremy was named the Northern Alberta Institute of Technology’s (NAIT) 2020 Hokanson Chef in Residence. The program provides students with a rare opportunity to learn firsthand from the best chefs in North America. The program was made possible by a generous donation from John and Susan Hokanson. Past chefs in residence have included Rob Feenie in 2009, David Adjey in 2010, Susur Lee in 2011, Massimo Capra in 2012, Chris Cosentino in 2013, Lynn Crawford in 2014, Michael Stadtländer in 2015, Vikram Vij in 2016, Amanda Cohen in 2017, Rod Butters in 2018 and David Hawksworth in 2019.

Mark Dobbin

Mark Dobbin is the Founder and President of Killick Capital Inc., a Newfoundland based family office. He has a Bachelor of Commerce (Co-op) from Memorial University of Newfoundland and a Masters of Business Administration from Dalhousie University.

Previous positions held by Mr. Dobbin include Chairman of CHC Helicopter Corporation, one of the largest helicopter operating companies in the world; Chairman and CEO of Vector Aerospace Corporation, a globally recognized aviation repair and overhaul company; and, Senior Vice-President of CHC Helicopter Corporation.

Mr. Dobbin is the Chair of the Innovation and Business Investment Corporation and Fellow with Creative Destruction Lab Atlantic. He is the Honorary Consul of Ireland for Newfoundland & Labrador, Co-Chair of the Ireland Canada University Foundation and Co-Chair of Business & Arts Newfoundland and Labrador. He is also the Chair of Memorial University of Newfoundland President’s Advisory Council and a member of the Dalhousie Advisory Council, as well as a member of the Board for Propel Ict.

Other notable achievements include Junior Achievement Newfoundland and Labrador Business Hall of Fame Inductee (2018), Alumnus of the Year for Memorial University of Newfoundland (2016), Canada’s Top 40 Under 40 (2000) and Alumnus of the Year for Memorial University’s Faculty of Business Administration (2000).

Alan Doyle

Alan Doyle is a Canadian singer, songwriter, and actor who rose to fame as the enigmatic frontman for acclaimed Newfoundland folk-rock band Great Big Sea. During their commercial peak from the late ’90s to the mid-2000s, the band’s energetic fusion of traditional Celtic fare and sea shanties earned them international success far beyond the shores of their island home. Alan launched a solo career in 2012 and released a trio of well-received albums over the next five years, and published two books. In addition to his musical work, he has appeared in numerous films and television shows.

Born and raised in the small town of Petty Harbour, he learned piano and drums as a child, soon moving on to guitar (and eventually mandolin, bouzouki, and pretty much anything with strings). He joined his uncle’s rockabilly-meets-traditional-Newfoundland band the New Standells at the age of 15, and while attending St. John’s University, was one-half of a duo (with John Benton) called Staggering Home. Following a series of informal jam sessions with members of the Celtic rock band Rankin Street, he joined forces with them and Great Big Sea was born. Mixing traditional Newfoundland music with a fresh pop sensibility, and with Alan handling lead vocals, the band released a self-titled album independently in 1992, and then signed with Warner Canada, which promptly reissued their debut. Some ten studio albums followed as they grew into one of Canada’s biggest and most respected bands.

Alan issued a solo album, Boy on Bridge, in 2012 which peaked at number 11 on the Canadian album charts and number 37 in the U.S. The album title refers to his lone cinema credit as the boy on bridge in the film A Whale for the Killing, when he was a child. Alan and Great Big Sea guested on the song, It’s Friday, by Canadian country artist Dean Brody on his 2012 album Dirt.

Alan is also an author, publishing a book-length account of his youth in Newfoundland and Labrador in 2014 entitled, Where I Belong. His second solo album, So Let’s Go, followed in January 2015. It peaked at number 13 in Canada. Two years later, he not only guest starred in the Murdoch Mysteries episode, A Murdog Mystery, but was awarded the title of Member of the Order of Canada cited for his contributions to the musical traditions of his home province and for his commitment to numerous local charitable initiatives. He issued his third solo offering, A Week at the Warehouse, in October of that year. It charted at number 26 on the Canadian album charts. His second book, A Newfoundlander in Canada: Always Going Somewhere, Always Coming Home, was published to coincide with the album’s release.

He kicked off the next decade with Rough Side Out, his first solo EP, which featured guest spots from country singers Jess Moskaluke and former collaborator Dean Brody.

The boy from Petty Harbour, Newfoundland, is a born explorer who carries home with him wherever he goes. Anyone who’s been observing keenly or casually over the last three decades will know Alan Doyle shifts his musical emphasis with natural ease while remaining true to the traditions of the place and people which form his artistic foundations. These truths hold on his latest release, Back to the Harbour. Back to the Harbour is a folk record. Its arrangements only lightly adorned, the lyrics direct. Absent are drums and bass, as Doyle was performing select shows as a trio when circumstances aligned serendipitously. “I had a few free days while touring around the Atlantic Bubble in November,” explains Doyle breezily. “Nipped into Joel Plaskett’s amazing New Scotland Yard studio with Cory (Tetford) and Kendel (Carson). We recorded six songs in three days right off the floor directly into an old tape machine.”

The recording has an immediate, intimate feeling; poignant in its clarity with themes identifiably characteristic of the Atlantic, but simultaneously universal in sentiment. Back to the Harbour sounds as though it were performed in the listener’s living room. Sometimes we are parting by circumstance or leaving by choice, or perhaps coming together by fate or reuniting by design. If one knows the canon of Great Big Sea and Alan Doyle’s solo records, there can be no mistaking his distinctive voice and steady themes. With Back to the Harbour, Doyle seamlessly introduces new elements to his range while remaining close to his cherished traditions. Always pushing the boat out a little further, ever returning to shore.

Deantha Edmunds

Deantha Edmunds is Canada’s first and only Inuk classical singer. She is a Dora Mavor Moore Award-winning performer and is much in demand as a singer, actor, and collaborator in both Indigenous and non-Indigenous projects. She is also a member of the Canadian Opera Company’s Circle of Artists.

Ms. Edmunds represented the province of Newfoundland and Labrador in Against the Grain Theatre’s streamed video-performance Messiah/Complex, accompanied by the Toronto Symphony Orchestra. The project received international acclaim.

Most recently, Deantha sang at the opening ceremony of the Frankfurt Book Fair, the world’s largest and oldest book fair, at which Canada was the guest of honour, and Her Excellency Mary May Simon, the Governor General of Canada was in attendance.

Upcoming projects include recording Edmunds’ collection of original songs, “Connections” with string quartet. She is currently writing the libretto for her opera Ingutak, which will be the first opera sung in English and Inuktitut.

Brad Gushue

An Order of Newfoundland and Labrador recipient, Brad Gushue is an accomplished Canadian curler, who along with teammates Mark Nichols, Russ Howard, Jamie Korab and Mike Adam, won Gold for Canada at the 2006 Winter Olympics.

He is also the 2017, 2018 and 2020 Tim Horton’s Brier champion with teammates Mark Nichols, Brett Gallant and Geoff Walker. Their win in 2017 was Newfoundland and Labrador’s first Brier title in 41 years.

In 2017 and 2018, Team Gushue represented Canada at the World Curling Championships, winning gold in 2017 and silver in 2018.

In 2021, Brad and teammate Kerri Einarson won the Canadian Mixed Doubles Championship and represented Canada at the 2021 World Mixed Doubles Championship.

Brad is a six-time (1995, 1996, 1998, 1999, 2000, 2001) provincial junior curling champion, Canadian junior curling champion and a two-time world junior curling title champion. He has played in 18 Briers, all for his native Newfoundland and Labrador, except in 2018, 2019 and 2021 where, as defending champion, his rink was designated Team Canada.

Brad is currently a business owner in St. John’s and co-authored a book with Alex J. Walling titled Golden Gushue: a Curling Story, which offers a behind the scenes look at the rise of his team to Olympic gold.

Brad, along with team members Mark Nichols, Brett Gallant, Geoff Walker and Jeff Thomas have qualified for the 2021 Canadian Olympic Curling trials November 20-28, 2021 in Saskatoon, Saskatchewan.

Allan Hawco

Acclaimed actor, writer, and executive producer, is one of the country’s most recognizable stars, whose wide range of talents appeal to audiences of all ages. He has the unique ability to connect to the viewer as an actor and from behind the scenes, as a writer and producer. He was born on Bell Island, and raised in The Goulds in Newfoundland.

Allan is recognized for his role in the hit CBC television drama/comedy Republic of Doyle (2010-2014), under his own production company, Take The Shot Productions. Allan played the lead, Jake Doyle, the roguish and irreverent private investigator and served as the show’s head-writer, executive producer and showrunner for the six season run. Republic of Doyle was sold to markets around the world, including syndication across the U.S. The show is now a leading show on streaming networks such as Amazon Prime, and Netflix Worldwide.

Allan’s other works include Frontier Season 1-3 (Bell/Netflix), Caught (CBC), Tom Clancy’s Jack Ryan (Amazon Prime), Moonshine Season 1,2 (CBC), The Book of Negroes (BET/CBC), Frontier (Netflix/Discovery Canada) Murdoch Mysteries (CBC), ZOS: Zone of Separation (The Movie Network), political thrillers H20 (CBC, 2004) and Trojan Horse (CBC), as well as the World War II drama, Above & Beyond (CBC).

Allan’s feature film credits include major roles in Director Bruce McDonald’s award winning film Weirdos (2017); and, Director/Actor Paul Gross’ Hyena Road (2016). Prior credits include a starring role in Love & Savagery (2009), directed by John Smith, and Sir Richard Attenborough’s Closing the Ring (2007) with Christopher Plummer and Shirley MacLaine. In 2018, Allan starred as Liam, the lead in Michael Melski’s, The Child Remains (2018).

Allan’s major accolades include awards such as the Gascon Thomas Award from the National Theatre School, an Outstanding Achievement Award from the Canadian Television Hall of Fame, a Gemini nomination for Best Actor in a Dramatic Series (Republic of Doyle), and an ACTRA nomination for Best Male Actor (Love & Savagery).

Beyond film and television, Allan has maintained his roots in theatre as the co-founder of the Toronto based Company Theatre. There, he garnered rave reviews as the star in its inaugural production of Tom Murphy’s Whistle in the Dark, as well as for both his roles in Festenand Belleville. The Company Theatre has gone on to stage numerous productions, such as John, Domesticated; The Seagull; Speaking in Tongues; The Test; Marion Bridge; and, the Dora Award winning Through the Leaves. Allan is a graduate of the National Theatre School of Canada.

Liam Hickey

Liam Hickey was born in St. John’s, Newfoundland and is one of few dual-sport paralympians to play for Canada.

Playing in both the 2016 Summer Paralympic Games in Rio De Janeiro in the sport of wheelchair basketball and the 2018 Winter Paralympic Games in Pyeongchang, South Korea in the sport of para ice hockey helping Team Canada to a silver medal.

Liam is also a World Champion, winning gold at the 2017 Para Ice Hockey Championships in Incheon, South Korea.

Liam is a Lululemon Global Ambassador, RBC Olympian, Assistant Captain of Canada’s National Para Ice Hockey Team and a full-time university student.

Jillian Keiley

Jillian Keiley is an award-winning director from St. John’s, Newfoundland and Labrador and founder of Artistic Fraud of Newfoundland.

Jillian has directed and taught across Canada and internationally. She received her BFA in Theatre from York University and was awarded Honorary Doctorates of Letters from both Memorial University and York University.

She was the winner of the Siminovitch Prize for Directing in 2004 and the Canada Council’s John Hirsch Prize in 1997.

Jillian assumed her role as The National Arts Centre English Theatre Artistic Director in August 2012, and her productions at the NAC have included Between Breaths, The Colony of Unrequited Dreams, A Christmas Carol, Twelfth Night, Metamorphoses: Based on the Myths of Ovid, Tartuffe, and Oil and Water.

She also directed Bakkhai, The Diary of Anne Frank and As You Like It for the Stratford Festival, as well as The Neverending Story and Alice Through the Looking-Glass, both produced as collaborations between the Stratford Festival and the NAC.

Tempting Providence, her collaboration with Robert Chafe for Theatre Newfoundland Labrador, toured internationally for 12 years and was the inaugural production at the launch of the Nurse Myra Bennett Theatre in Cow Head, Newfoundland.

Colleen Kennedy

An Order of Newfoundland and Labrador recipient, Colleen has been involved in the tourism industry of Newfoundland and Labrador for 28 years. She is passionate about tourism development and continues to strive for excellence in the industry.

Recognizing Gros Morne as an icon for tourism in Newfoundland and Labrador, it is her vision to position the region as a leader in sustainable tourism and as a premiere destination for travelers who value cultural, economic and environmental sustainability. She works tirelessly to achieve these goals provincially, nationally and internationally.

Notable achievements include Air Transat International Sustainable Tourism Program Global Recipient 2011, Baxter Travel Media: Responsible Travel & Tourism Forum Leadership Award 2012, TIAC VIA Rail Canada Community Service Award 2012, Hospitality Newfoundland & Labrador Doug Wheeler Award 2014, and Hospitality Newfoundland & Labrador John Atkins & Co. Tourism Champion of the Year 2015.

Current Board positions held include a member of the Newfoundland & Labrador Film Development Corporation, CBDC – Corner Brook region, and the Community Sector Council Provincial Working Group.

Paul Pope

St. John’s producer Paul Pope is a dynamic force in the Canadian film industry, having produced or worked on hundreds of films.

A founding member of the Newfoundland Filmmakers Cooperative, where he served as president for over twenty years, he has been instrumental in the development of a vibrant production industry.

A generous mentor, he is a passionate voice for independent production at a national level with a long-standing tradition of supporting Canadian artists and ensuring that Canadian stories are brought to the screen.

Paul serves as a board member on the Resource Centre for the Arts, Newfoundland Filmmakers Cooperative and was Vice-Chair (2009-2010) of the Canadian Media Fund.

In addition to his awards and nominations for his projects with Pope Productions, he has also received the St. John’s City Council 2020 Tourism Award, Arts Achievement Award from ArtsNL, the Douglas James Dales Industry Builder Award, and an honorary Doctorate from Memorial University.

Paul has a BAA in Film and Photography from Ryerson.

Charlene Rumbolt

While Charlene Rumbolt was born and raised in Ontario, she has been visiting her ancestral homeland since a young age. In 2010, she moved to her ancestral home in Mary’s Harbour, Labrador.

She started sewing at a young age and taught herself embroidery and beading techniques over the years. As a teenager, she was introduced into the world of art and began to foster her love of being creative. While in her twenties, Charlene became fascinated with natural dye techniques. Art school in the 1990’s further developed her drawing and painting skills.

While living in Labrador, she starting experimenting with local flora and fauna to create uniquely dyed pieces in silk and cotton. Today, she enjoys working in oils, but also creates pieces in acrylic, watercolour and through printmaking. While connecting to her Aboriginal heritage, she fell in love with the natural materials used by the Inuit for hundreds of years and incorporates these materials into many of fibre art pieces.

In 2018, Charlene started Great Caribou Studio in Mary’s Harbour. In 2020, the studio received designation as an Economuse for Indigenous Crafts. Although this is her main studio, she welcomes others to create with her. She also facilitates workshop experiences throughout Labrador.

Kellie Walsh

Kellie Walsh is the founder and Artistic Director of the award-winning Lady Cove Women’s Choir, the Artistic Director of the internationally celebrated Shallaway Youth Choir, the co-founder and Artistic Director Emeritus of Newman Sound Men’s Choir. She has most recently co-founded the Inuit Youth Choir Ullûgiagatsuk from Nunatsiavut, Labrador, and is the immediate Past President of Canada’s national choral organization, Choral Canada.

From deep and proud roots in Newfoundland and Labrador, she’s gained renown internationally for embracing the medium of choral singing as an opportunity to explore empathy building, sociocultural identity, and civic engagement.

Walsh has worked across Canada, the United States, South America, Europe and Asia advocating choral music as a medium to unite people and cultures, transcend geography and societal, political and economic circumstances. Walsh believes the arts can play a transformative role in shaping communities’ futures.

She obtained her Bachelor of Music and Bachelor of Music Education from Memorial University in 1994, and was awarded a Master of Music (Conducting) from Memorial University in 2004. Walsh is currently researching a PhD on the effects of COVID-19 on choral singing.

She is an active guest speaker, member, collaborator and innovator in Choral Canada, Chorus America, The Association of American Choral directors, and the International Federation of Choral Music.


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