Board of Directors

Call for Nominations: Folk Music Ontario Board of Directors
Deadline: 11:59PM ET, August 19th, 2022
Online Nomination Form
What to Expect if You’re Elected

Folk Music Ontario (FMO) is now seeking individuals to stand as candidates in the 2022 election of its Board of Directors. Directors will be elected by electronic ballot (or acclaimed) ahead of this year’s Annual General Meeting (September 27, 2022) with terms concluding with the 2025 AGM. For 2022, FMO is looking to fill three board positions through this process. Click here for more information and to apply.

Folk Music Ontario’s Board of Directors is a dedicated and enthusiastic group of ten 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.

2022/2023 Executive Committee


Amie Therrien, term ends 2022

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 Executive 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.


Cassidy Houston, Secretary
Cassidy Houston, term ends 2023

Since her first FMO Conference with the Developing Artists Program in 2018, Cassidy has known that the FMO community was a place she could call home. An emerging singer-songwriter from Northern Ontario with a University background in Health Promotion, Cassidy is empowered to be a voice for youth and help shape the future for a thriving folk music community.


James Keelaghan, term ends 2024

Current Artistic Director of the Summerfolk Music and Crafts Festival and the Stewart Park Festival as well as a touring and recording singer-songwriter. I have JUNO Awards and Nominations and ditto for the CFMA’s. I have made my living in the music industry as my sole source of support for 35 years regularly touring Canada, The United States, Australia, Nw Zealand and Europe. I served on the board of FMO for a number of years, but had to resign 3 years ago for personal reasons. I am more steady now in my personal life and would like to get get involved with FMO again, especially at this time. I believe my perspectives as a presenter, a performer, a fan and a journalist allow me to see the industry from a unique vantage point.


Mark Watson, Treasurer
Mark Watson, term ends 2023

Mark Watson runs a Toronto based artist management company – Watson Entertainment. The current roster includes 3-time JUNO award winner David Francey, JUNO nominated Madison Violet, Dave McEathron, and Amy Bishop. Mark is also a partner at Place My Booth which specializes in vendor management and sponsorship for major events and festivals.

2022/23 Directors

Cécile Doo-Kingué, term ends 2024

Award-winning artist Cécile Doo-Kingué is considered one of Canada’s finest guitarists and singer-songwriters. First generation from Cameroon, the NYC-born Montrealer has released four albums to critical acclaim, received 8 Maple Blues Awards nominations and has extensively toured domestically and internationally, including most major folk, blues and jazz festivals in Canada, earning a reputation for blistering live sets, strong social commentary and guitar prowess. She has opened for, shared a stage and/or recorded with Montreal Jubilation Choir, Canned Heat, Angelique Kidjo, Ruthie Foster to name but a few.

In 2008, Cecile and Gern Vlchek co-created Chick Pickin’ Mondays, offering a safespace and equitable gig for women and genderqueer artists. Cécile has since expanded the concept to curate and present private showcases at music conferences including FMO and FAI.

Richard Henderson, Director
Richard Henderson, term ends 2023

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 (, an acoustic roots band.

Umair Jaffar, term ends 2024

Umair Jaffar is the Executive Director of Small World Music, one of Toronto’s pioneering and most significant presenters of culturally-diverse music. Since arriving in Toronto in 2014, he has worked in curatorial and management roles at cultural institutions including the Aga Khan Museum and Harbourfront Centre. Prior to immigrating, he was the CEO & Artistic Director for IPAC (Institute for Preservation of Art and Culture), a Pakistan-based non-profit social enterprise that focused on developing sustainable solutions for preserving and promoting indigenous, folk and traditional performing arts. Umair also serves as a board member for several non-profit art organizations including CAPACOA, North York Arts and MusiConnect Asia. He has an MBA from University of Adelaide, Australia and a MSc Cultural Anthropology from University of Oxford, UK.

Yasmina Proveyer, term ends 2024

I immigrated to Canada in 2008 seeking a way to further develop my artistic career, after having a solid background in performing arts. Since 2011 I have been actively working not only as an artist manager for several musicians in the region but as an arts administrator and cultural connector. I have served as a jury for the City of Ottawa, the OAC, and FACTOR. Since 2015 I have participated regularly in WOMEX and Mundial Montreal. After 2 years co-chairing the Juno Awards Advisory Committee for the world music category I am currently the chair of the committee transitioning into the Global music category. Early in 2019, I co-founded along with Claudia Balladelli, the Axé Worldfest, an initiative that hosts concert series to promote and present world music artists in Ottawa, the National Capital Region of Canada. Early in 2021 we produced the first edition of Empowering Women in the Music Industry, a two-day online program that included webinars, talks and female artists spotlights.

Candace Shaw, term ends 2024

Candace Shaw is a Feminist, Cultural Producer, and Activist who has been a fixture on the Canadian music scene for almost thirty years. She was the long-time Artistic Director for the Peterborough Folk Festival, Chair of the Shelter Valley Folk Festival, and Booker for the Music City Summer Series in The Distillery District, Toronto, amongst other roles. She is a thoughtful, engaging, and provocative commentator and advocate for women, the arts, and arts workers’ rights, and in 2019 was a candidate in the Federal election. Candace is the founder of Secret, a not-for-profit advocacy and education organization working with under-represented people in the Canadian music industry.

Tara Williamson, term ends 2024

Tara Williamson is a member of the Opaskwayak Cree Nation and was raised in Gaabishkigamaag (Swan Lake, Manitoba). She is a singer/songwriter with 2 EPs and 1 full length album under her belt that have garnered acclaim across Turtle Island, including an Indigenous Music Award nomination for Best Pop Album in 2017. Her newest album, Enough, was released in June of 2021. Tara also holds degrees in social work, law, and Indigenous governance, is a Senior Researcher at the Indigenous Law Research Unit at the University of Victoria and a Research Fellow with the Yellowhead Institute.

FMO Committees

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.