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.
Prabha Sethia-Patel holds a Bachelor of Accounting Honours with a major in Marketing and a Diploma in Business Studies (distinction) from Metropolitan University, London, UK. Prabha has worked for international IT companies in both finance and marketing roles, including PR Manager at Acer UK. Prabha combined her marketing know-how with her love of home decor and interior design as the owner of a Colour Your World franchise in Mississauga for 15 years. She also successfully operated a shop-at-home window coverings service from her store. Prabha has updated her Accounting skills by successfully completing Taxation I and II credits at Sheridan College. A life-long learner, Prabha is currently working towards certification as Payroll Compliance Practitioner (PCP) with Canadian Payroll Association. 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.
Arts Program Manager
A graduate of the Ontario College of Art and Design, artist-educator Lisa Robinson studied illustration and fine art. Lisa’s art can be described as playful and bold and reflects her interest in nature, colour relationships and form.
As an art educator since 1998, Lisa has created and taught visual arts programs to children, teens, adults and seniors in Peel and surrounding communities. It is Lisa’s belief that a positive and encouraging atmosphere along with an inspiring setting such as that of Riverwood helps all students to see and achieve their own artistic potential; to find their inner artist. Lisa was VAM’s Child/Youth Programs and ArtReach Coordinator from 2007 – 2015 and she is now Program Manager, responsible for ArtReach and Adult, Teen, and Children’s Programs.
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.
Barb graduated from Western University with a BA in Visual Arts. She worked in advertising and children’s book publishing, writing and illustrating four children’s books. She studied fundraising and resource development at Georgian College and has experience in the philanthropic community. Recently Barb obtained a Small Business Management certificate from MBMC. Barb worked at VAM as an ArtReach Instructor and the Camp Volunteer Coordinator. She is excited and proud to be a part an organization that brings art into our schools and community. In her spare time, Barb loves spending time with her rescue dogs and boating on beautiful Georgian Bay.
Daniel holds a BA in Drama and Theatre from McGill University and is working towards his graduate certificate in Arts Administration and Culture Management at Humber College. After spending 5 years in a corporate setting, Daniel wanted to expand his experience into the not-for-profit sector. VAM’s advocacy for the arts and community aligned with Daniel’s belief in the transformative nature of arts and culture. Daniel is a theatre artist and has worked with Buddies in Bad Times Theatre, DopoLavaro Teatrale, Luminato Festival, SummerWorks, and Fringe Festival. Daniel was a playwright in Factory Theatre’s The Foundry, and House + Body’s Playwright Initiative.
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.