Letter from the Interim Executive Director, January 2022

We have much to be thankful for, although that can be hard to believe on a frigid, bleak, isolated day in deep, dark January.  Vaccines are reducing the impact of COVID and the newest variant, while highly infectious, appears less dangerous than earlier versions.  We can soon begin to think of the pandemic in the past tense and learn to live with an endemic virus that requires prudence but need not stop us from getting on with our lives … and work.

The arts sector, particularly the performing arts and every art form that works best with a live audience, has suffered through two years of disruption that have been devastating box offices and mental health.  Venues will reopen this year. Audiences will begin to return. It will be a year of renewal and reinvention.  None of this will be easy, but the work will be far more stimulating than waiting for the storm to pass.

ELAN begins the year with a sense of optimism and renewal. We have three new staff members joining the team and are happy to introduce them to you today.

Vanessa Herrick will be joining ELAN as our new Executive Director on February 1st. I have had the pleasure to work with Vanessa in her position as Executive Director of Seniors Action Quebec for the past couple of years. Vanessa is a dynamic team-player who cares deeply about our community.  She will fit perfectly with ELAN’s staff, board and members.

I also want to welcome Iso and Julio to the team. They will be bringing their ideas, energy, and support to Membership Services.

During my last few weeks as Interim ED, I want to help the team prepare to work with ELAN’s members on the challenges that 2022 will bring.

Guy Rex Rodgers

Interim Executive Director