TORONTO, ONTARIO - The Toronto International Film Festival Group (TIFFG) today announced that Vice-Chair and Chair Elect Paul Atkinson has officially assumed the duties of Chair of the Board of the Toronto International Film Festival Group. Former Chair Allen Karp will remain a member of the Board. In addition, the Board has elected four new members: William J. Fox, Deepa Mehta, Warren Spitz and Constance Sugiyama.
“We thank Allen Karp for the eight years he served as Chair, for the tremendous leadership he has brought to our organization, and welcome Paul Atkinson’s continuing commitment in his new capacity as Chair,” said Piers Handling, Director and CEO of the Toronto International Film Festival Group.“
“It’s with great anticipation that I assume the Chair of our Board,” said Paul Atkinson, Chair of the Toronto International Film Festival Group’s Board of Directors. “I look forward to working with my fellow board members, campaign volunteers and all of TIFFG’s staff, continuing to build momentum towards the opening of Bell Festival Centre.”
Paul Atkinson is the CEO of Casero Inc., a leading provider of solutions for digital media and user-generated content. Mr. Atkinson serves on the Boards of Directors of the Institute for Enterprise Education and Variety - The Children's Charity, and is also a member of the Advisory Board of the Richard Ivey School of Business. Mr. Atkinson joined the Toronto International Film Festival Group board in 2004, and also serves as the Campaign Co-Chair for TIFFG.
William J. Fox is Executive Vice-President, Office of the CEO at BCE Inc.. Prior to this, he was Senior Vice President, Public Affairs at Bombardier Inc., and previously Senior Vice President, Public Affairs, CN. Mr. Fox is founding partner of the Earnscliffe Strategy Group, an Ottawa-based public affairs company. Mr. Fox has a master’s degree in journalism from Carleton University and has also studied at l’Universitie de Paris (Sorbonne).
Deepa Mehta is an internationally acclaimed director who has earned global attention with her films. Mehta’s first feature film, SAM & ME, received the first Honourable Mention by the Critics in the Camera D’ Or category at the 1991 Cannes Film Festival. Mehta’s distinguished filmography includes CAMILLA, FIRE, EARTH, BOLLYWOOD /HOLLYWOOD, REPUBLIC OF LOVE, and WATER, the third film in the “elements” trilogy, which opened the 2005 Toronto International Film Festival and was later nominated for an Academy Award. In the spring of 2006, Mehta was recognized by the University of Western Ontario for her achievements, receiving an honourary doctorate.
Warren Spitz is President & CEO, UCS Forest Group. Mr. Sptiz is an active participant in the community, and has been involved throughout his career with organizations such as the United Way, The Hospital for Sick Children Foundation, Habitat for Humanity, and many others. He is also active in the business community, and is the incoming Chair of the Young President’s Association (YPO) Upper Canada Chapter, as well as serving on the Executive of the YPO Canadian Council and the 2007 Global Leadership Conference in Toronto.
Constance Sugiyama is Senior Partner, Gowling Lafleur Henderson LLP, Founding Director, WCM and Founding Chair, Heather L. Main Memorial Scholarship Fund, Toronto. Ms. Sugiyama advises on a diverse range of domestic and international businesses on issues ranging from corporate finance and corporate governance to complex cross-border mergers and acquisitions. Ms. Sugiyama currently serves as board member of The Hospital for Sick Children, LuminaTO, and also serves on the Business Advisory Council to the DeGroote School of Business, McMaster University, the Advisory Council of Women in Capital Markets and as a Senior Advisor to the Japanese Canadian Cultural Centre.
With these new appointments comes the departure of four board members. Retiring from the board are Niv Fichman, Rhombus Media, Mary Schectman, Beverly Topping, President & CEO, Institute of Corporate Directors and Robb Chase, former President of Papa John’s International in Louisville Kentucky.
“We’re very grateful to our departing Board members for the excellent service they’ve provided to the Toronto International Film Festival Group,” said Mr. Atkinson. “Their insights and contributions have aided the Group’s continued growth.”
Toronto International Film Festival Inc. as at June 20, 2007
2007/2008 Board of Directors
Chair Emeritus: William Marshall (Producer, Xybermedia)
Chair: Paul Atkinson (CEO & Chairman, Casero Inc.)
Barry Avrich (President & CEO, Endeavour Marketing.)
Ian Bandeen (CEO, Canadian Trading & Quotation System Inc.)
David R. Bloom (President, DGRB Consultants Inc.)
Brendan Calder (Professor, Joseph L. Rotman School of Management, University of Toronto & Corporate Director)
Irene Chu (President & Producer, Goldspin Productions Inc.)
William (Bill) J. Fox (Executive Vice President, Communications & Corporate Development)
Jan Innes (Vice President Communications, Rogers Communication Inc.)
Ellis Jacob (President & CEO, Cineplex Galaxy LP)
B. Denham Jolly (President & CEO, Milestone Radio Inc.)
Allen Karp (Chairman Emeritus, Cineplex Odeon Corporation)
David J. Kassie (Chairman & CEO, Genuity Capital Markets)
Bill Kurtin (CEO, The Plan Group)
Kenneth W. Lalonde (President & CEO, The CUMIS Group Limited)
Ralph Lean, Q.C. (Senior Partner, Cassels Brock & Blackwell)
James Little (Chief Brand & Communications Officer, RBC Financial Group)
Michael MacMillan (Executive Chairman, Alliance Atlantis Communications Inc.)
Deepa Mehta (Filmmaker) Ron Moore (Chairman & CEO, Sonar Communications Group Inc.)
Leslie Noble (Principal, Strategy Corp Inc.)
Warren Spitz (President & CEO, Upper Canada Forest Products)
Rajesh Subramaniam (Senior Vice President, International Marketing, Federal Express Services)
Constance Sugiyama (Senior Partner, Gowlings Lafleur Henderson LLP)
Lisa de Wilde (CEO, TVOntario)
Ex-Officio: Slawko Klymkiw (Executive Director, Canadian Film Centre)
Designed by world-renowned architectural firm KPMB, Bell Festival Centre (placeholder name) is a dynamic, open and inviting facility located on the northwest corner of King and John Streets. The five-storey podium building houses the Group’s operations, a gallery, five cinemas, educational suites and a film reference library. Construction of TIFFG’s Bell Festival Centre marked the launch of the Group’s landmark destination facility dedicated to the moving image.
The project is a co-development between TIFFG and the King and John Festival Corporation (KJFC), comprised of The Daniels Corporation, filmmaker Ivan Reitman and the Reitman Family. Atop Bell Festival Centre sits Festival Tower, a 37-story residential condominium which will be built and operated by KJFC.
TIFFG thanks its founding sponsor Bell, who through an innovative marketing alliance, will have naming rights to Bell Festival Centre and retain exclusive telecom sponsorship of the Group. TIFFG also thanks its philanthropic donors as well as the Government of Canada and the Government of Ontario, who have each contributed $25 million towards the capital costs of Bell Festival Centre.
The Toronto International Film Festival Group is a charitable, not-for-profit, cultural organization whose mission is to transform the way people see the world. Its vision is to lead the world in creative and cultural discovery through the moving image. For more information, please contact the Communications Department at 416-934-3200.