Directions of the Columbia Kootenay Cultural Alliance

Valemount Djembe Drumming Workshop – Granville

Working with community arts councils, individual artists, performers, heritage workers and cultural organizations, the goal of the CKCA is to build long-term sustainability for artists and to strengthen and support arts, cultural and heritage organizations.

The Columbia Kootenay Cultural Alliance has set the following future directions as an organization:

1) Build long-term sustainability for artists, thereby increasing the number of artists who can create an economic living through their art.

2) Create a positive image for artists, the arts, culture and heritage organizations as community assets.

3) Support art, culture and heritage that increases public and community awareness of social, ecological and economic issues, seeing art, culture and heritage as part of the connection between and within communities.

4) Create increased opportunities for all segments of local communities including seniors, youth, ethnic groups, first nations to participate in arts, culture and heritage.

5) Create an increased audience and market for artists and performers, both within and beyond the Basin.

6) Assist the on-going viability and availability of community facilities for use by artists, arts, cultural and heritage organizations and residents.

7) Support development of skills, and structures for marketing, artists, arts and heritage organizations and the arts, culture and heritage.

8) Encourage and support mentoring relationships.

9) Strengthen arts, cultural and heritage organizations, both locally and Basin wide.

10) Build a common voice within and for the arts, cultural and heritage community.

Definition of Heritage

Heritage is what we value from the past. Heritage is those places, objects, records, indigenous languages, and other things that have aesthetic, historic, scientific, social significance, or other special value for future generations as well as for the community today.

Heritage includes the intangible records of our past such as memories, stories and songs, ways of life, customs, attitudes, and interactions between individuals and communities. Heritage is the record of culture as it was.

Goals of the Heritage Community

Artifact Restoration – Doukhobor Discovery Centre – Before And After Farm Wagon

• Promoting the collection, preservation, and protection of, and public access to, cultural heritage resources;

• Promoting respect for the historical diversity of communities;

• Cooperating with, and sharing information and knowledge with others to promote heritage;

• Raising awareness of heritage, heritage issues, and their importance;

• Identifying and securing funding for the support of heritage;

• Promoting opportunities for heritage research; and education.

About the CKCA

The Columbia Kootenay Cultural Alliance (CKCA) manages and administers an arts, culture and heritage funding program for Columbia Basin Trust. The CKCA was created in 1998 by members of the community, developed its partnership with the West Kootenay Regional Arts Council and the Columbia Basin Trust and began delivering arts, culture and heritage funding that same year.

The CKCA has a Steering Committee (SC) of 14 members from around the Basin elected for two year terms.

Nominations to the SC are put forward by the 18 local arts councils in the Basin as well as the Heritage Federation of South Eastern BC. Nominees can be any member of a community with a strong background in arts, culture or heritage, are involved in the cultural work of their region and have a background in working on committees and program development. SC members must understand the needs of these sectors in order to adjudicate funding proposals and develop programs in partnership with the Trust.

Stephanie Kellet – Minimart Mural

Steering Committee members represent the broader needs of arts, culture and heritage in the Columbia Basin rather than individual arts councils or the communities in which they live. The Columbia Basin includes all communities within the area roughly bounded by Valemount, Revelstoke, Rossland, Creston, Sparwood, and Golden.

Funding from the CKCA is for all arts disciplines (visual art, theatre, music, dance, media, literary and inter-arts), and includes grants to individuals as well as to arts, culture and heritage organizations.

Funding applications are adjudicated once a year by the CKCA Steering Committee, in partnership with community arts councils in the Basin.

CKCA Steering Committee Members

2017 CKCA Steering Committee

Following is a list of our current steering committee members. Click on a name or scroll to read their bio below.

Tom Jamin, Valemount Dorothy Blunden, Invermere
Thelma Brown, Golden Laurie Charlton, Trail
Stephanie Fischer, Vice Chair, Nelson Jacquie Hamilton, Castlegar
Anne Jardine, Edgewater Stephanie Judy, Kaslo
Denise Baughan, Fernie Margaret Pacaud, Revelstoke
Laura White, Chair, Crescent Valley
Allan Sayegh, Kimberley


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Allan Sayegh has been a resident of Kimberley for the past 3 years. He has a Bachelor of Arts Degree from Concordia University with a major in Communications. Prior to his recent retirement, Allan worked for Shaw Communications for the last 25 years. Although he was primarily Program Manager for several community channels in Manitoba, Saskatchewan, and Alberta, Allan also served as part of the Corporate Communications team, producing some of Shaw’s television commercials, internal videos and training videos. Allan also served on the board of Shaw’s SCPI (Shaw’s Children’s Programming Initiative) Fund, which selected and funded a number of Children’s programs that are presently still airing. He also served on several National Cable Television Committees.

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Tom Jamin is a self-employed carpenter living in Valemount B.C. In his own shop he produces custom kitchens, furniture and stairs. The first 25 years of adult life were spent as a monk at Westminster Abbey, Mission, B.C. During this time he was a voting member of the monastic chapter. Tom was involved in planning and overseeing several large construction projects. In 2006 Tom moved to Valemount and soon after became involved with Valemount Arts & Cultural Society and has been part of the Theatre Committee from the beginning. Tom’s volunteer work involves planning and setup of the shows the Society present aswell as the lighting. For several years Tom has also been involved with the Yellowhead Outdoor Recreation Association.

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Dorothy Blunden has been a resident of the Windermere Valley for nearly twenty years. A member of the Windermere District Historical Society, she served as curator of the Windermere Valley Museum for over fifteen years. In her past life, after leaving teaching, she wrote a monthly column for a senior’s magazine, was the CEO of the Golden Age Club in Calgary, and served on the board of directors of Fort Calgary Preservation Society. Today she is on the Board of Directors of the Heritage Federation of Southeastern B.C., continues her interest in genealogy through instructing courses, leading the local genealogy group and searching out her own ‘roots’.

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Born and raised in Golden, BC. Thelma Brown has lived in the Columbia Valley for most of her life. She received a business diploma in 1970 and has worked in a wide variety of office manager situations and done bookkeeping for many years. She was employed by Golden District Arts Council from 2006 – 2012. Board experiences include Canadian Cancer Society, Golden Family Centre and Parent Advisory council. Her art mediums are silversmithing, raku and watercolour. Other personal interests include cross-country skiing, kayaking, yoga and travel.

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Laurie Charlton has lived in the Kootenays most of his life.  He has a PhD in Chemistry and was Research Chemist and Quality Assurance Manager for Cominco Electronic Materials.  He is currently retired. Laurie served for 17 years as a Councillor for the City of Rossland.  He is actively involved in several community organizations and is a former Director of the Rossland Museum.  As a consequence of his involvement with the Rossland Museum, he organized and is President of the Heritage Federation of Southeastern BC which includes 44 museums and other heritage organizations from throughout the Columbia Basin in its membership.

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Stephanie Fischer is an architect and artist. She received her Diploma-Ingenieur (FH), Architektur (B.Arch.) at the Advanced Technical College Berlin, Brandenburg. She worked as project manager in Germany developing a Cultural Centre which won the Alfred-Toepfer Foundation Award for most innovative cultural achievement. She was involved in the creation of the Media-Initiative of Saxony-Anhalt before moving to Canada in 1995. Stephanie has built her own art practice and ceramic studio. Recently, Stephanie managed the development of Touchstones Nelson: Museum of Art and History. She served on the Steering Committee for the Economic Impact Study of the Arts, the Cultural Development Initiative and Touchstones Board. As part of her community involvement, she currently volunteers on the Nelson Cultural Development Committee, the Nelson Heritage Working Group and the City of Nelson Railtown and Downtown Development Advisory Committee. Presently, Stephanie is the Executive Director of the Capitol Theatre Restoration Society.

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Jacquie Hamilton retired from a ten and a half year stint as the Director of Financial Services for the City of Castlegar. Prior to that she worked for Selkirk College, running the College Bookshop for over twenty years. She is a Certified Management Accountant, and also has a BA from UBC. She is a member of the Castlegar Arts Council and the Selkirk Weavers’ and Spinners’ Guild, serving an administrative role in both organizations. She was treasurer of the Board of the Kootenay Gallery of Art History and Science for over a decade, and continues to support cultural organizations in the community in a variety of ways.

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Anne Jardine is retired secondary school teacher from Edgewater who has been an arts advocate for all of her adult life. Her involvement in Columbia Valley Arts Council helped bring about the establishment of Pynelogs Cultural Centre in Invermere. She sings alto in Valley Voices and plays viola in a community orchestra in Golden. She is a calligrapher, curator, journalist, playwright, producer, and director. She believes visual and performing arts are essential to education and human development.

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Stephanie Judy has been active in BC arts, education and community organizing for 35 years, and is currently treasurer of the North Kootenay Lake Arts & Heritage Council. Stephanie is a musician, music teacher, a founding member of the Symphony of the Kootenays, and president of the West Kootenay Suzuki Association.

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Denise Baughan is an actress, director and educator who resides in Fernie, BC. Originally from Ontario, she holds a BFA in Acting from the University of Windsor, and BEd from Vancouver Island University. Denise has had many opportunities to work as a performer, director and educator all across Canada. She has been involved in numerous “art happenings” in Fernie and is the founder of “Freckles Children’s Theatre Company.”  Working as an educator, she consistently has the chance to share her passion and love of theatre with her students. She looks forward to continuing to create theatre in the Fernie area, and hopes to extend her passion into different areas of the Kootenays.

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Margaret Pacaud has worked as an administrative assistant with Community Futures Development Corporation and the Economic Development Commission of Revelstoke for the past 15 years. She works with many volunteer boards and committees and has worked on many planning strategies (cultural, economic development, environmental, retail etc) and volunteers administrative skills to various organizations. Margaret has been involved with several organizations over the past 10 years, including Chair of the Revelstoke Arts Council, Revelstoke Mountain Arts Festival and is presently a director on the Revelstoke Visual Arts Centre Board and Revelstoke Arts Council. Her interests include gardening, quilting, reading, and visual arts.

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Laura White is a graduate of the Nova Scotia College of Art and Design University, receiving her BFA (with a Jewellery major) in 1993. Returning to BC, Laura moved to the West Kootenays, where she has been a part-time instructor in the Jewellery and Small Object Design studio at Kootenay School of the Arts at Selkirk College since 1995. For several of those years, Laura was also teaching part-time in a Jewellery program at Nunavut Arctic College, flying into remote Arctic communities. From 2004 to 2012, Laura was the administrator at KSA at Selkirk College while continuing to teach part-time in the Jewellery studio. Laura has been an executive Board member of the Assembly of BC Arts Councils, and sits on the Board of the West Kootenay Regional Arts Council.