ED, July-Aug 2006

From the Executive Director

On may 31, 2006, LIFT held its annual general meeting to report on the past year and major events since our last AGM. For LIFT, 2005 was extremely busy as we recorded our best year ever in self-generated revenue. Significant increases in educational services, equipment rentals and store sales reflected the overall growth in activity. Once again, self-generated revenue exceeded public funding from the arts councils. It takes a lot of energy to achieve this significant financial accomplishment and I would like to thank the staff for all their hard work.

I would like to thank al the outgoing board members for their volunteer contributions. There are a number of new, energetic board members that have joined the board this year. We look forward to their commitment and vision as we continue to expand our services and membership.

Over the past few years, there have been many changes at LIFT, mostly for the better as we have grown into a healthy, vibrant media art centre. Fortunately, for LIFT, one thing that hasn’t changed is the core staff. For the last three or four years, the core staff of Shenz Baksh, Michael Barker, Greg Boa, Vanessa Lam and Renata Mohamed have been the anchor for the organization. Nothing that has been accomplished would have been possible without the commitment and expertise of the LIFT staff. So it is with regret that I have to announce that our Technical Coordinator Greg Boa will be leaving after four years of outstanding service to LIFT.

Greg has been a dedicated employee since 2002, joining LIFT initially to replace me as Technical Coordinator when I took a leave of absence. Greg has done a remarkable job over the years overseeing equipment rentals, helping members in the editing suites and managing tech at LIFT events. Greg has always maintained a calm and professional attitude whenever confronted by the daily stress of handling technical duties. Greg will be sorely missed as our resident technical guru, but more importantly as a friend. Greg will be moving on to new adventures and challenges in India. We wish him well in his travels.

I would also like to thank Matthew Toffolo for all his hard work organizing the monthly LIFT Out Loud script readings. For three, years, Matthew volunteered tirelessly to ensure that LIFT Out Loud was the best that it could be. Matthew will be relinquishing his role as LIFT Out Loud organizer to focus on other projects. We wish him well in his endeavours.

On a happier note, LIFT is excited to announce Yuri Cho has been hired as our new Fundraising and Development Coordinator. Yuri will contribute to LIFT’s current slate of fundraising and special events including the silent auction, garage sale, Salon des Refuses, Tom Berner Award, Ward’s Island Screening, while investigating new sources of funding.

There exists a huge potential to expand our programming and fund-raising efforts through partnerships with other organizations as well as additional financial support through charitable foundations, special project grants from arts councils ad donations from private donors and corporations. We look forward to taking advantage of Yuri’s expertise.

Roberto Ariganello

July/August 2006  Volume 26, Issue 4