The Sector Equity for Anti-Racism in the Arts (SEARA) is fortunate to have the leadership of its Steering Committee members. Individuals who sit on this committee represent cross-provincial, interdisciplinary interests, and make core decisions with regards to the overall direction of SEARA and POWER SHARE: a COVID-19 Relief Fundraiser for Black, Indigenous and Racialized Artists.
Art Gallery of Greater Victoria
Michelle Jacques is currently the Chief Curator at the Art Gallery of Greater Victoria (AGGV), where she is responsible for guiding a curatorial and education program that links contemporary practices, ideas and issues to the Gallery’s historical collections and legacies. Since joining the AGGV, she has curated exhibitions with contemporary artists Carol Sawyer, Rodney Sayers and Emily Luce, Gwen MacGregor, and Hiraki Sawa; co-curated major retrospectives of the work of the Canadian artists Anna Banana and Jock Macdonald; and developed a series of installations that use the Gallery’s collection to evoke cross-cultural conversations. She has previously held various roles in the Contemporary and Canadian departments of the Art Gallery of Ontario, Toronto; was the Director of Programming at the Centre for Art Tapes in Halifax; and has taught courses in writing, art history and curatorial studies at NSCAD University, University of Toronto Mississauga, and OCAD University.
Cecily Nicholson has worked on Musqueam, Squamish, and Tsleil-Waututh land in the downtown eastside neighbourhood of Vancouver for two decades, most recently as administrator of the artist-run centre, Gallery Gachet. She is a part of the Joint Effort prison abolitionist group and coordinates education and public programs at the Surrey Art Gallery. Cecily is the author of Triage (Talonbooks, 2011), From the Poplars (Talonbooks, 2014), winner of the 2015 Dorothy Livesay Prize for Poetry, and Wayside Sang (Talonbooks, 2018), for which she was awarded the Governor General’s award for poetry. She presently lives in Burnaby. In 2017 she was SFU’s Ellen and Warren Tallman Writer in Residence.
Sierra Tasi Baker
Designer, Consultant, Performer
Sierra is an award winning Squamish Nation public artist, consultant, storyteller and designer. She is also of Musqueam, Kwakwaka’wakw, Tlingit and Hungarian descent. Sierra has her Masters in Sustainable Urbanism from the Bartlett School of Planning from University College London in London, England, as well as her Bachelor in Environmental Design from the School of Architecture and Landscape Architecture from UBC.
Sierra grew up in her family’s public art business, Sky Spirit Studio, learning from her father, Wade Baker (master carver, oral historian and storyteller) and mother Mary Tasi. Sierra has been creating murals and public artworks with her family since 2008. Sierra often incorporates the concept of “Two-Eyed seeing” into her work. Having one foot strongly rooted in her ancestral heritage and one foot in the Western world.
Sierra was the Creative Director of the City of North Vancouver’s “Studio in the City” program, teaching youth public art from 2016-2017. She now teaches “Decolonizing Design” through her company Sky Spirit Consulting whilst also advising on developing a uniquely Coast Salish approach to design, urban planning and community engagement.
Executive Director, 221A
Brian McBay (pronouns he/him/his) is Executive Director of 221A, a non-profit organization that works with Artists and Designers to research and develop social, cultural and ecological infrastructure based on the unceded territories of the Musqueam, Squamish and Tsleil-Waututh first nations in the city known as Vancouver. As a student Co-founder of 221A during the height of the 2007-08 global economic crisis, he is part of a new generation of leaders in the cultural sector aiming to reverse deepening inequality, xenophobia and colonialism in Canada.
In addition to his role at 221A, he was named a 2018 Fellow at the Salzburg Global Forum, and is currently the President of the Pacific Association of Artist Run Centres, a member of the City of Vancouver Arts and Culture Advisory Committee, a member of the National Gallery of Canada Board of Trustees and a member of the newly founded Chinese-Canadian Museum Board of Directors.
Canadian Alliance of Dance Artists/West Chapter
Jessica Wadsworth has been engaged in cultural management for the last 15 years.
Based in Vancouver, she has organized and overseen events, tours and exhibitions all over the world—including Germany, Greece, Croatia and North America. She has an overview of culture in a few different regions in the world, particularly an understanding of how culture is managed. She has worked in visual arts, theatre and dance, as well as in labour and the green industry.
Ta7talíya Michelle Nahanee
CEO, Decolonizing Practices / Nahanee Creative Inc.
Ta7talíya Michelle Nahanee, Sḵwx̱wú7mesh, is a decolonial facilitator & strategist catalyzing social change to transform colonial narratives & impacts through centred Indigeneity. She works within the intersection of class, culture and creativity focusing on social change through communications and deep engagement. She is the designer of a life-size board game and workshop called Sínulhkay and Ladders which aims to answer the question “what now” in this era of truth & reconciliation. Her approach has earned her the 2019 City of Vancouver Award of Excellence in Diversity and Inclusion. Michelle is also a 2020 Dialogue Associate with the Simon Fraser University Morris J. Wosk Centre for Dialogue.
Greater Vancouver Professional Theatre Alliance
Kenji Maeda is the Executive Director of the Greater Vancouver Professional Theatre Alliance. In addition to his role at GVPTA, Kenji is the artsvest B.C. Program Manager at Business for the Arts, a sponsorship training program for arts and culture organizations across the province. He has had the opportunity to lead workshops and work with more than 150 arts and culture organizations to strategize private sector partnerships within the arts. Kenji is also a cultural and organizational development consultant who has worked with arts organizations, government, and educational institutions. He was previously the Executive Director of DOXA Documentary Film Festival, has worked in film, TV, and theatre and is a Jessie Award recipient.
Curator, Producer & Manager
Joyce is a curator, producer and facilitator based in Vancouver BC. She is currently a freelancer with The Cultch on various projects in their fall 2020 season, as well as part-time project manager with Canada Dance Festival. She is in the first cohort of the Critical Response Process Certification program led by Liz Lerman and John Borstel. She was with the PuSh International Performing Arts Festival from 2013-2020 in various curatorial and senior leadership positions and served as Associate Artistic Director following a period of post-founder organizational transition. Previously, Joyce spent 10 years in the Canadian dance milieu, including as Executive Director of New Works, as well as Made in BC – Dance on Tour. Her training is in Theatre Production/Design from the University of British Columbia and in her early career was once nominated for a Jessie Richardson award for Costume Design. Her first foray in performance was as a teenage participant in ‘Turning Point’, a new genre public art project by Suzanne Lacy. Joyce is a first-generation Canadian of Filipina descent. She is privileged to live on the unceded territories of the Musqueam, Squamish, and Tsleil-Waututh Nations.
Board Member, CARFAC BC
Sarah Wang is a first-generation immigrant woman of colour currently residing on the unceded Coast Salish territories of Vancouver. She received her Bachelor of Arts Honours with high distinction in International Relations and History of Art from the University of Toronto, and her Graduate Certificate in Museum Studies from Harvard University.
With a focus on Visual Arts and museum institutions, Sarah currently manages the Public Tour program at the Vancouver Art Gallery, and occupies board positions on Roedde House Museum and CARFAC BC. Her ongoing research on demographics and decolonizing institutional practices in museum education, interpretation, and collections spans from North to South America, from the Harvard Art Museums, to the national museums of Argentina, Brazil, and Chile. From her professional practice centered on advocacy for equity-seeking communities– particularly those arts and cultural workers who identify as BIPOC and/or Deaf/disabled– she is very humbled to work with SEARA to advocate for artists and demand accountability from institutions.
Producer, Scholar, and Artist
Jarrett Martineau is a leading voice in Indigenous media and cultural production. He works extensively at the intersections of music, art, media, technology, and social movements and holds an M.A. and a Ph.D. in Indigenous Governance from the University of Victoria. He has been a Fulbright Visiting Scholar at Columbia University and CUNY’s Center for Place, Culture and Politics in New York and his academic research explores the role of art and creativity in advancing Indigenous resurgence and decolonization.
Jarrett has worked with CBC Radio, Music, Digital, and Television, VICE Media, MTV World, NowPublic, Make Believe Media, Elastic Entertainment, and other media, to produce award-winning content for a global audience across all media (digital, TV, and radio).
He is nêhiyaw (Plains Cree) and Dene Suline from Frog Lake First Nation in Alberta and is currently based in Vancouver on the traditional, unceded territories of the Musqueam, Squamish, and Tsleil-Waututh Nations.