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Wanda Koop, Founder & Honourary Chair


The American poet Charles Olson wrote that space is the whale that threatens to swallow up North Americans. Wanda Koop, one of Canada’s most accomplished painters, has turned that whale inside out; she has been consuming space for over four decades. In large-scale paintings and mixed-media events that incorporate video, music and dance, she has fashioned bodies of work that are beautiful, monumental and mesmerizing. An exhibition of her paintings is as much an environment as aninstallation.

Shirley Martens, Chair & Treasurer


Shirley has served on the board of Art City since 2004, and is currently chair of the Art City board.

Shirley created The Lab Works Inc., a premium photofinishing lab, with her husband in 1988 and sold the company in 2011. She owns and manages a commercial real estate property in Winnipeg and runs Blend Imports, a company that sources and imports South African wines to Manitoba.

Shirley also serves on the board of iDE Canada. iDE creates income and livelihood opportunities for poor, rural households in countries around the world. iDE’s model for development work—listen to people experiencing the problem and give them the tools they need to prosper. She has been a volunteer since 2012 and serves as chair of the fundraising and gala committees.

Elizabeth Schwersensky, Vice-Chair


Elizabeth joined the Art City board in 2015 and has enjoyed being a part of the Art City community ever since...the parade is a favourite every year! Outside of Art City, Elizabeth is a senior Human Resources professional. She has been working in HR since 2006, has attained her CPHR designation, and has primarily worked at non-profit organizations. Non-profits and community organizations are just a fit and are so important in our city. Work aside, Elizabeth loves spending time with her husband, kids, pets and friends. She enjoys a good puzzle, time outdoors, and especially dives into gardening whenever there isn't snow on the ground.

Diane Lafournaise, Secretary


Hello! I’ve been a part of Art City since the early 21st century. Back then I was a workshop facilitator and continued in this role for several years after that. I have a BFA, a BEd, and have served on the AC board for half a decade. Art City rocks!

Jacqueline Boily


Jacqueline s'est impliquée pour la première fois auprès d'Art City en tant qu'artiste invitée en 2009 et a eu l'honneur de rejoindre le conseil d'administration en 2019, où elle siège au comité de politique interne. Elle est avocate des droits de la personne et fière franco-manitobaine de Saint-Boniface. Son expérience personnelle et ses études lui ont appris que le système de justice pénale a un impact disproportionné sur les personnes marginalisées, en particulier les jeunes, et elle sait que la programmation d'Art City transforme la vie des participants pour le mieux.

Jacqueline first became involved with Art City as a guest artist in 2009 and was honoured to join the Board in 2019, where she serves on the Policy Committee. She is a human rights lawyer and proud franco-manitoban from Saint-Boniface. Her personal experience and studies have taught her that the criminal justice system disproportionately impacts marginalized people, particularly youth, and she knows Art City's programming transforms participants' lives for the better.



Jen Kirkwood


Jen is a retired Art Educator, with over 30 years in the classroom; from Norway House to Manitou, and other stops in between, she spent most of those years teaching High School Art in the Winnipeg School Division.  Her biggest passion was running after-school programming with youth of all ages, whether that was painting murals in Rossville and beyond, or building sets for musicals, Jen has always worked to make Art inclusive to all.  Joining the Art City Board in 2010 has kept that passion alive!

Silantoi Kisoso


I am a mum to a perspicacious growing artist. I was born in the Rift Valley and have come to call the Winnipeg prairies home. I love art and its boundless forms. Art City has always given me a space to be me... in all my forms! I work in international food security.

Monique Lysak


Mother, wife, sister, late daughter, friend and community member. Educator, mentor, artist and collaborator. Passion for and dedication to the transformative power of artistic engagement in building human capacity and communities. Long-time member of the Art City community. First, as a mural facilitator in 1998 when Art City opened; then supervisor; 1st outreach instructor; photography instructor; Board Member.

I have had the privilege of witnessing Art City grow, expand, adjust, adapt, change peoples' lives and so much more while maintaining its inclusive grassroots feel and mission. More than words, thank you for this life-giving journey.

Sonia Prevost-Derbecker


Before joining Movember as the Global Director of Indigenous programs; Mental Health and Suicide Prevention, Sonia Prevost-Derbecker served as the National Vice President of Education with Indspire, the largest non-profit Indigenous education organization in Canada.

She has held Director and CEO positions for organizations across the country including the first CEO of the newly created Indigenous Child Welfare System, All Nations Coordinated Responses Child and Family Services and Ndinawemaaganag Endaawaad the largest Indigenous youth serving agency in Manitoba.

Sonia was the third elected Indigenous school trustee in the history of the Winnipeg School Division and has taken lead in the development of an Indigenous high school and a provincial integrated service delivery model insuring best outcomes for her community.

Sonia has be the author of several articles and research studies most recently The State of Equity in Education Report and has been the key note at several conferences and events.

Anna Robertson


I joined the board in 2014. I have been teaching Grade 2 and 3 at Strathcona School since moving to Winnipeg in 2005. Making art with kids is a big part of my work. I have a M. Ed specializing in the use of visual art in other subject areas. My initial education program focused on Urban Diversity. I have 3 lovely kids, two cats and one dog.