a young girl painting a picture on a table
CAPRAC member Manon Doran

Alliance of Arts Councils of Ontario

Our organization includes more than 30 municipal and regional arts councils, community arts councils and artists’ networks from across Ontario, who collectively represent tens of thousands of artists, hundreds of local arts organizations of every size and discipline delivering arts and culture programming and services in their communities, cultural workers and arts groups in every discipline, their volunteers and audiences. 

Our Team

Board of Directors

Shruti Ganapathy– Co-Chair

Shruti Ganapathy is the Executive Director of the Markham Arts Council. She is a marketing and social media aficionado, passionate author and digital storyteller who loves to explore and share stories about her community in Canada. Shruti comes with great experience in Event Management, Public and Media Relations. She holds a Bachelors degree in Journalism and Contemporary History from Queen Mary, University of London and has completed her Executive MBA from Harvard University. As the Co-Chair for the Alliance of Arts Councils of Ontario (AACO) Shruti contributes her time to growing the Arts Sector as a whole within the Province of Ontario.

Janet Jarrell– Co-Chair

Janet Jarrell (she/her) is the Executive Director of the Quinte Arts Council (QAC) since 2018, bringing a diverse background in strategic planning, not-for-profit finance and marketing. A published author and experienced editor-in-chief, Janet spearheads the success of QAC’s notable Umbrella, a cornerstone program for the organization. With over fifteen years dedicated to profiling local artists, she has cultivated a strong network, facilitating partnerships and sponsorships.

As the Co-Chair of the Alliance of Arts Councils of Ontario, she actively cultivates a platform for resource sharing, partnerships, and collaborative efforts with Arts Service Organizations across the province. Actively engaged in her community, she serves on the City of Belleville Economic Development Committee, part-time professor at Loyalist College, and previously chaired Options for Social Growth for five years.

Janet is committed to advancing the strategic vision of arts and culture and ensuring they remain a vital and thriving presence in the community.

Mike Douglas– Director

Mike Douglas has enjoyed bringing the Mississauga Arts Council (MAC) into sharp focus as a valuable arts service agency, initiating new opportunities for creative expression, employment and recognition. MAC supports the professional development of artists, providing educational webinars, online coaching and seminars that grow ‘artpreneurial’ capacity and enhanced skills.
Turning the Mississauga Arts Awards into a gala dinner celebration has made The MARTYS the most comprehensive city arts awards program in Canada. The artists’ showcase that is MAC’s Masquerade Ball has evolved into a successful fundraiser, helping MAC operate its micro-granting programs that saw 50 grants awarded for $150,000 in 2023.
Previously, Mike was founding Editor and Co-Publisher of the popular city magazine Mississauga Life – Spirit of the City. For 30 years he was a freelance television director for network documentaries and dramas, this TV work included significant assignments for leading companies in Canada. Mike’s many years of community volunteering earned him the Queen’s Diamond Jubilee Award in 2012.

Cassandra Olsthoorn– Director

Nicole Milne– Director

As Executive Director of the Ottawa Arts Council, Nicole is known for her strong track record of achieving results and working collaboratively to advocate in support of the local arts community. 

With 30 years of experience as an arts administrator, she has held leadership positions both locally and nationally. Her expertise in non-profit arts management includes extensive experience in administration, fundraising, marketing, communications, strategic planning, project management, programming and, more recently, authentic community engagement. Since taking on the role at the Council, Nicole has introduced a heightened focus on relationship and trust-building with the arts community, while making space for historically marginalized artists.

Nicole also plays an active role in Ottawa’s thriving theatre community, serving as a mentor, artistic producer, actor, director and multidisciplinary performer. Her performing career spans four decades and includes leading roles in more than 50 stage productions inside and outside Ontario.

Staff

Gia Nahmens– Administrator

Ontarians Value the Arts, and the Arts are Valuable for Ontario