The “Greater Vancouver Society to Bridge Arts and Community” is a charitable society that has a mandate “to promote awareness of, and education about arts and culture, in Greater Vancouver, by establishing bridges between the general public, the private sector and arts organizations and individual artists through activities such as, but not limited to, educational workshops, outreach programs, awards ceremonies, and the maintenance of an arts resource centre”. The Bridge Society has a service agreement with the Alliance for Arts and Culture, whose staff act to fulfill its mandate.
The Bridge Society has fundraised to contribute to the Arts Legacy Fund (of which it is the named recipient for grants), has produced the Vancouver Arts Awards, and continues to facilitate the annual Arts Board Member of the Year award; it also contributes to the ongoing public resource function of the Alliance, recently supporting the ongoing development of the Alliance website. Projects like Culture Days and the Arts Summit also fall within the mandate of this Society’s work. In partnership with the Alliance, the Bridge Society will co-present Arts Summit 2013 on June 21 and 22 at the Roundhouse Community Arts and Recreation Centre. This year's Summit will focus on the need for a comprehensive cultural policy framework for our province.
This year, the Greater Vancouver Society to Bridge Arts and Community is proud to name Catherine Van Alstine the recipient of the sixth annual Arts Board Member of the Year Award, presented at the 2012 Mayor's Arts Awards. Catherine is a senior partner with Odgers Berndtson in Vancouver and brings 30 years of experience in a wide range of industries to her clients. She is past chair of the board of Arts Umbrella, on the National Advisory Board of the Learning Partnership, and a United Way of the Lower Mainland Campaign Cabinet Member. She is also chair of Women United in Philanthropy, Membership Committee, BC Business Council, and chair of the BC Advisory Board, Breakfast Clubs of Canada.
Past recipients include: Dr. Stanley Hamilton (2007), past chair of the Arts Club Theatre Company and current Chair of the BC Arts Council; Jane Heyman (2008), co-founder and past president of the Vancouver Performing Arts Lodge (PAL), PAL Studio Theatre board member, and acting president of PAL Canada; Camilla Tibbs (2009), general manager of the Vancouver International Writers Fest, president of the Jessie Richardson Theatre Awards Society and a member of the Touchstone Theatre board; Martina Lee (2010), a lawyer with ICBC, who has served on the Public Dreams Society board since 2005 and is also a member of the Big Sisters of BC Lower Mainland board, and Marlie Oden (2011), managing partner for Bridge Communications, who spearheads marketing and public relations services for many organizations and arts groups, including the City of Vancouver and the Firehall Arts Centre.