Main Phone Line – 905.277.4313
Annis Karpenko, MFA, MEd
Annis Karpenko joined VAM in 2014. She has an MFA in Interdisciplinary Art from Goddard College and a MEd in holistic education from OISE/University of Toronto. She began her administrative journey as a stage manager and she brings along an eclectic mix of experience gleaned from her work as General Manager for the Bishop’s University Students’ Representative Council in Sherbrooke, Quebec, Executive Director of Townshippers’ Foundation and Coordinator for the York University Centre for Feminist Research. Annis is a life-long learner, a community builder, and a strategic thinker. She has sat on the Boards of Directors for The Piggery Theatre and The Lennoxville & District Women’s Centre as well as the Restorative Justice committee at Community Centre 55 in Toronto. Annis is a founding member of the Third Monday Collective – an independent group of Mississauga Culture Organizations that meet monthly.
Program Development Manager
Prior to joining VAM, Leslie was the Creative Programs Advisor at the Art Gallery Burlington and the Education Coordinator at the Burlington Arts Centre. As an arts programming specialist, Leslie brings a broad range of experience in creative program development, event coordination, communications and volunteer management to her role at VAM. Leslie holds a B.A. in English and a minor in Art History from McMaster University (earning the Dean’s Honour list). Leslie is passionate about lifelong learning, wellness and creating meaningful connections within the community. She writes, “I believe art is fundamentally a language of communication and is transformative in both practice and appreciation.”
Prabha Sethia-Patel graduated from Metropolitan University, London, UK with Bachelor of Accounting (Honours) and Diploma in Business Studies. Prabha has worked for international IT companies in both finance and marketing roles, including PR Manager at Acer UK. Prabha also holds Payroll Compliance Practitioner (PCP) certification with Canadian Payroll Association and continues to refresh her knowledge base by regularly attending industry seminars. Prabha manages Finance, Payroll and Customer Service functions as well as many other duties. A self-proclaimed perfectionist, she is detail orientated and applies a problem solving approach to everything she does.
Heather Zadkovich is delighted to belong to the creative team at Visual Arts Mississauga where her passion for sharing the arts with the local community will reach greater heights. A graduate of George Brown College, Heather has had a colourful career working extensively in the arts in a variety of roles including Communications and Youth Program Coordinator with the Mississauga Arts Council, Promotions Manager with Windmill Theatre and more recently as the Supervisor of Theatre Program Development at the Meadowvale Theatre with the City of Mississauga’s Culture Division. While working with the theatre, she significantly increased both sponsorship for programs, audience base and revenue for the theatre’s professional season. Zadkovich is also a songwriter and professional vocalist specializing in Jazz, World Music, Pop and Folk music.
Anna McCusker graduated from Carleton University in 2012 with highest honors, a major in Greek and Roman Studies, and a minor in English. She has been involved in the administration of non-profit art enterprises since high school, when she was employed by Neilson Park Creative, making the transition from weekends and evenings as a customer service representative to working as office assistance and database administration.
Anna joined VAM at Riverwood first as a temporary receptionist to assist in a transitional period, then as a full-time receptionist and administrator, overseeing memberships and course registrations, and answering customer queries. Born into a family of artists, Anna has always been involved in the arts, and aside from her own personal endeavors, has designed and created six pieces for auction at fundraising events since 2008.
Exhibitions & Events Coordinator
Eldiana completed a degree in Art History and English at the University of Toronto before going to Humber College to complete a postgraduate certificate in Arts Administration and Cultural Management. She started at VAM as a volunteer in 2014, then our weekend Customer Service administrator. While working on her degree at Humber she was VAM’s Events and Exhibitions Intern and in September 2015, she was hired as VAM’s Events, Exhibitions and Volunteer Coordinator. She is proud of the great things VAM brings to the cultural community of Mississauga and is excited for the great creative possibilities ahead! She loves to travel and spends most of her vacation time looking at art.
Elham is an illustrator and graphic designer currently double majoring in Art/Art History and English at the University of Toronto Mississauga and Sheridan College. She spent the last couple of years working and volunteering at various art institutions and galleries within the GTA including the Art Gallery of Ontario, the Harbourfront Centre, and the Blackwood Gallery. She was most recently the Creative Director of The Varsity, the University of Toronto’s student newspaper of record. She volunteered at VAM’s own Art in the Park years before joining as the administrative assistant.
Laura is a painter and sculptor currently double majoring in Italian, Art and Art History at the University of Toronto Mississauga and Sheridan College. She has work experience in communications, office administration, and teaching English to adults and youth. Laura continues to volunteer at art galleries and cultural associations such as the Art Gallery of Mississauga, the Italian Contemporary Film Festival, and L’Altra Italia. As a former VAM student, and now administrative assistant, Laura is enthusiastic to join such a wonderful team and organization that brings together our passion for arts in the community.