meet our STAFF
ZEPHYRA VUN | EXECUTIVE DIRECTOR
Zephyra Vun is the Founder + Owner of anARCHI design, a multi-disciplinary design and art studio in Winnipeg’s Exchange District, participating in architecturally inspired art projects, and curating various interactive, public art events and exhibitions. She received her Environmental Design Degree (2009) and Masters of Architecture Degree (2011) from the University of Manitoba. Vun is an ambassador for accessible art and design and strives to advocate inclusive public engagement with these creative disciplines. She maintains a strong presence in the fine arts field, exhibiting her work internationally as a member of the International Contemporary Curator Artist Directory, while also acting from a more curatorial role promoting local artists and organizing major events for the Winnipeg Design Festival, Nuit Blanche, First Fridays in the Exchange, and the Winnipeg Symphony Orchestra.
MEET OUR BOARD OF DIRECTORS
JOHANNA HURME | CHAIR
Johanna Hurme is an architect and a founding partner of Winnipeg based 5468796 Architecture. In the past ten years the firm has achieved national and international recognition. The Houston based Rice Design Alliance recently stated that they ‘truly believe 5468796 to be one of the most talented young design firms worldwide.’ In addition to her architectural practice Johanna is an activist and an advocate. She is passionate about making the creative sector an integral part of broader culture by spearheading ventures like Table for 12 + 1200, Chair Your Idea and Design Quarter Winnipeg. Johanna is also the Chair of Winnipeg Chamber of Commerce Board of Directors, serves on the Council of Manitoba Association of Architects, and is a Chair of the WCC’s Creative Council.
CARMYN ALESHKA | BOARD MEMBER
Carmyn is president of Paradigm Insurance. She has focused in the life insurance industry for over 15 years. Her current practice focuses on delivering an elite life insurance strategy for ultra high net worth individuals across Canada. In 2014 she established her own charitable foundation called The Upside Down Tree. It was created with the vision of helping turn small charities upside down. The foundation identifies charities that are small, passionate and hard working and helps them through mentorship, connections, and business expertise to get them off the ground. The Upside Down Tree has raised over $1,000,000 for Canadian charities helping change countless lives both within the Winnipeg community and worldwide. Her latest initiative is being a leader in driving change in children’s mental health building a national kids mental health centre in Winnipeg.
CODY CHOMIAK | SECRETARY
Cody is the Director of Marketing for Economic Development Winnipeg & Tourism Winnipeg, Winnipeg’s official destination marketing organization. Cody is responsible for leading and executing strategic marketing plans to increase business attraction, investment, and visitation to Winnipeg in all markets. He has an extensive background in graphic design, marketing and advertising. In 2014, Cody received his CDME (Certified Destination Management Executive) accreditation through Destination Marketing Association International. A born Winnipegger, Cody has a passion for both design and his community.
chelsea thomson| BOARD MEMBER
Chelsea Thomson is the Manager of Marketing and Communications for The Forks North Portage Partnership, and has a hand in some of the city’s biggest celebrations at The Forks. She is responsible for the planning, development, and implementation of all marketing plans for each of the Partnership’s core business units including The Forks, The Forks Market, Railside and Go to the Waterfront. She is a graduate of the Creative Communications program at Red River College and holds a diploma from the College of the Rockies, Adventure Tourism Program. Chelsea serves on the board for Downtown Winnipeg BIZ and previously the Manitoba Brain Injury Society.
KRISTIN NELSON | BOARD MEMBER
Born in Ajax Ontario, Kristin Nelson is a visual artist who received her BFA in Visual Arts at Emily Carr Institute of Art and Design (2003) and MFA at Concordia University (2014). She has completed residencies through the Canada Council International Residency program (2015) and at the Banff Centre for the Arts (2008). She has exhibited work across Canada as well as in México and has served on the board of directors of the Manitoba Craft Council and the Manitoba Printmakers Association. She currently serves on the board of the Winnipeg Arts Council and is the Director of Martha Street Studio. Her work is represented by Lisa Kehler Art + Projects and is in the collections of the Winnipeg Art Gallery, the Province of Manitoba, BMO, Boralex and private collections.