The year 2016 will go into the annals as the year of policy consultation. ELAN invested an exceptional amount of time and energy consulting with our members and community and writing briefs.

Our efforts began with the Quebec Ministry of Culture’s first review of its cultural policy in 25 years. We submitted a brief in April and met with Quebec Minister of Culture and Communication, Luc Fortin in August.

Then came the Department of Canadian Heritage’s quinquennial review of Official Language programs, which are of vital importance to ELAN and our members. We submitted our brief in November. Next week ELAN will accompany the Quebec Community Groups Network (QCGN) to Ottawa for a consultation with senior officials from Canadian Heritage and Mr. Randy Boissonnault, Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Canadian Heritage.

Our third brief was written for the Canadian Content in a Digital World consultation launched in April by the Minister of Canadian Heritage. The goal of Minister Joly’s ambitious and far-reaching public consultation is to bring Canada’s cultural properties – laws, institutions, policies and programs – into the digital age. Thank you to ELAN members who provided valuable insights and suggestions for our brief, submitted November 25.

Congratulations are in order to ELAN’s board member Fortner Anderson who was elected to a two-year term on Culture Montréal’s board of directors to represent ELAN and Montreal’s English-speaking artists. I had the pleasure of serving on Culture Montréal’s board for four years and am pleased that Fortner will continue this valuable collaboration. I also want to congratulate the NFB, particularly Annette Clark (Executive Producer Quebec/Atlantic Studio), Kat Baula (Producer Quebec/Atlantic Studio), and Michelle Van Beusekom (Executive Director, Programming and Production) for hosting an open-house information session on November 17. This was the first of many future opportunities for directors, screenwriters, composers, editors, and designers to connect with the NFB.

ELAN’s final public event of 2016 is tonight’s schmoozer at McGill in collaboration with the Schulich School of Music Booking & Ensemble Offices and McGill’s Career Planning Service. We hope to see many of you there.

The musical connection could not be more appropriate as we pay tribute to Leonard Cohen, an outstanding artist, Montrealer, and human being. Over the years I have spoken to many people who knew him as a friend or colleague. He is always membered as a thoughtful, considerate, and compassionate soul, forever striving for the highest expressions of artistry and humanity. Leonard Cohen was a great inspiration to all.

Guy Rodgers

Executive Director