Lakeshore Arts is excited to announce the appointment of Ashley Watson as its new Executive Director.
An accomplished arts leader, and well respected within the arts community, Ashley is uniquely qualified to lead the team that delivers Lakeshore Arts inclusive community focused arts programs.
“On behalf of the LSA Board, I am excited to welcome Ashley Watson as our new Executive Director. Ashley has a wealth of experience in championing the arts and in advocating for the needs of the South Etobicoke community,” Marijana Cuvalo, Lakeshore Arts President said. “We are thrilled to have her bring this valuable knowledge to LSA as we enter a new chapter, one still extremely committed to driving cultural, social and artistic growth and building inclusive, healthy communities.”
This will mark a bit of a homecoming for Ashley as she previously served in multiple roles with Lakeshore Arts as the Development and Partnerships Manager and prior to that as Operations Manager. During that time, she was instrumental in unlocking new funding sources to allow Lakeshore Arts to grow from a local Mimico focused organization to one working to deliver unique arts programming to underserved communities across the entire Etobicoke area.
“It’s great to be coming back to Lakeshore Arts and build on the amazing work done by Susan Nagy (previous Executive Director)” Ashley said. “I look forward to collaborating with our talented staff, board members and the Etobicoke community in continuing to grow Lakeshore Art’s inclusive arts programming.”
In addition to her previous roles at Lakeshore Arts, Ashley served as the founding curator of Humber Galleries where she established multiple gallery spaces and a collection of contemporary Canadian artwork. Having received her Master of Arts degree specializing in Art, Museum and Gallery Studies from University of Leicester in the UK, Ashley has previously taught at University of Toronto, Humber College and University of Guelph.
“Community arts are special since the development and presentation of art is done in collaboration with the community – artist and community members work together to express their unique identities” Ashley said. “Art is a powerful tool for expression, learning and connecting with each other.”
Ashley begins her journey as Executive Director on July 30, 2020.