Folk Music Ontario’s Board of Directors is a dedicated and enthusiastic group of thirteen volunteers, elected democratically by the membership via advanced balloting during the fall and at the annual conference in October. Directors serve a three-year term. The Executive Committee is elected by the directors, and each position on the Executive Committee is held for one year.
2019/20 Executive Committee
Preetam Sengupta, term ends 2020
Preetam runs a company called Letting Artists Make Art (LAMA), dedicated to helping (predominantly folk-roots) musicians make a living through their music. LAMA fills in gaps on the business side so artists can focus on creativity. Preetam is a singer/songwriter, balancing the business and the stage. He writes and sings solo and in a band called Crash Bamboo, and works closely with Northstarr Entertainment, a leader in Canadian Urban music.
Amie Therrien, term ends 2019
Amie has been involved with FMO from the beginning of her career. She joined to get a discount on courses at the Harris Institute but soon saw it was something she wanted to be part of. Currently the Operations Director at Music Managers Forum Canada after years of managing folk, roots, and Americana artists through her company Balsam Pier Music, Amie has also worked in marketing and management at Coalition Music, as the Programming Coordinator at Folk Alliance International and is an alumna of the Artist Manager Program with Canada’s Music Incubator.
Max Merrifield, term ends 2021
By day (and sometimes nights) Max Merrifield is the Executive Director of Northern Lights Festival Boréal, one of Canada’s original music and arts festivals. The 3 day festival presents an eclectic blend of roots, indie, world and modern music, as well as other art forms. By night, Merrifield is a hip-hop and spoken word artist by the name of Silvertongue, as well as a show promoter with Cage Call Underground Hip-Hop. Merrifield is also the current chair of Myths & Mirrors Community Arts and a board member of Folk Music Canada. He is a lover of diversity and innovation as well as tradition in music and art.
Richard Henderson, term ends 2021
Richard has been practicing law for over 35 years. He recently retired from HSBC Financial, having served as Vice-President, Law and Compliance, Secretary and General Counsel for 27 years. Richard also served on its board and as Chair of its Executive Committee. His roles included overseeing the legal function and managing the company’s regulatory and government affairs, compliance and governance functions. In addition, Richard has served as a Director, and as Secretary and Vice-President, of the Scugog Council for the Arts, a not-for-profit visual and performing arts presenting organization that supports the arts and fosters creativity in Durham Region. Richard has been a musician since his public school days and regularly performs as a singer/songwriter and as a founding member of The Wanted (thewanted.ca), an acoustic roots band.
Paul Fortune, term ends 2019
Paul’s early passion for Folk music has inspired years of support and promotion. A long time attendee and volunteer of the Summerfolk Music & Crafts Festival, Board member of the Eaglewood Folk Festival, and more. With 24 years experience in Sales, Marketing and Strategic Planning, Paul now operates Forch’s Record Store in Cambridge, offering Canadian and international Folk/Americana artists and promoting live music.
Rosalyn Dennett, term ends 2020
Rosalyn is a leader and organizer in the national and international folk community. As a long-standing member, Rosalyn has worked with Folk Music Ontario in many capacities, including official and unofficial showcase artist, official and private showcase presenter, panelist and panel moderator, emcee, exhibitor, reception host and more. Her experience working in the non-profit sector for MusicOntario, CIMA, Music Canada Live, Ontario Live Music, and the Canadian Federation of Musicians would be an asset to any organization, and her dedication to music can be seen through her successful career as an artist, performing and recording with Oh My Darling, Ken Whiteley, Fred Penner, Donovan Woods, Kaia Kater, and many more fine folks.
Tim Des Islets, term ends 2021
Tim Des Islets is the founder of the Canadian artist management company Noisemaker Management. With achievements in cultivating Canadian talent that has reached audiences both at home and abroad, Noisemaker manages an award-winning roster of artists that includes The Once, Megan Bonnell, Tim Chaisson, and JUNO Award-winners The East Pointers. Tim formerly worked at Bumstead Productions where he managed current clients The East Pointers and Tim Chaisson as well as Poor Young Things, Two Hours Traffic, The Lazys, and The Trews. Tim has helped develop artists and establish these artists into Canadian music canon. Tim’s expertise in artist management has created incredible talent that helps solidify Canada as a major player in the music scene.
Emma Jane Julien, term ends 2021
Emma Jane Julien is a friendly face on the FMO scene as, at 29, she is already over a decade into a career in the Canadian Music Industry. Conference-goers may have seen a set or two in the Campsite-themed, cedar-scented private showcase room she co-presents at FMO, or bumped into her in the First-Timers showcase room she has co-hosted at FAI in the last two years. She has been a publicist, a manager, an administrator, a hat-passer and ticket-taker, a promoter, a brainstormer, a web designer, a grantwriter and a lady of all trades for hundreds of artists over the years. She is currently an Account Representative at Re:Sound, the Canadian organization that advocates for music creators, educates music users, licenses broadcasters/businesses and distributes royalties to creators. Emma Jane has a BA in Commercial Music from the University of the West of Scotland’s School of Creative Industries and studied Recording Arts Management at Harris Institute.
Paul McInnis, term ends 2022
Paul McInnis has been a supporter of folk and Americana music since the mid 90’s and has been a part of many small community festivals as a promoter and performer. He has released 1 full-length album and 2 EPs as a songwriter and has been fortunate to play shows all over Ontario and down the I75 to Nashville as a featured performer at the Commodore. As a musician Paul has played as a side man to countless artists but most notable was as Craig Cardiff’s drummer for 3 years. Paul also holds an MBA and has 15 years of high level operations experience.
Syma Shah, term ends 2021
As the Director of Programming and Special Events, Syma has been part of the revitalization of Union Station project since 2013. She has been working to connect with all major and grassroots arts and cultural organizations within the City and internationally, to create continuous contemporary programming in one of Canada’s most iconic buildings! Syma has been a passionate arts and cultural producer for more than 10 years. She has had many years’ experience with multidisciplinary arts festivals, with a focus and passion for diversity and inclusivity.
Folk Music Ontario’s Board members serve on a variety of committees, some of which also include FMO members, staff members and consultants. Click here to see a list of the various FMO committees and working groups, and the people who sit on them.