Wellness, Culture and Sport

Four new members appointed to the New Brunswick Arts Board (10/06/30)

NB 1121

June 30, 2010

FREDERICTON (CNB) - Four new members have been appointed to the board of directors of the New Brunswick Arts Board. Wellness, Culture and Sport Minister Hédard Albert made the announcement today.

They are Kyle Cunjak, Laura Ritchie, Chet Wesley, and Gwyneth Wilbur.

"It is always interesting to appoint new members to a board of directors because they bring fresh ideas," Albert said. "Thanks to their varied experience, I am sure that each of these new members will carve out a place within the board and that they will all be important to the arts community."

Kyle Cunjak is a young artist who grew up and studied in New Brunswick. He has been a freelance photographer for the last five years and is developing his skill at photographing art. His works are on exhibit at Gallery 78 and have been shown throughout the Maritimes. Cunjak is also passionate about music and has made a cross-Canada tour with his company, Forward Music Group.

Laura Ritchie was born in Fredericton. She has a Bachelor's degree in art history from Mount Allison University and a professional specialization certificate in collections management from the University of Victoria. From 2005 to 2009, Ritchie worked at the Beaverbrook Art Gallery as registrar, collections assistant and research assistant. She is the executive director of the New Brunswick Crafts Council.

Chet Wesley has worked as an actor, educator, television presenter, producer, journalist and designer. His diverse educational background gives him the experience to advise young artists on how they can manage their business. Wesley holds several degrees. He is director of communications with the New Brunswick Innovation Foundation in Fredericton.

Gwyneth Wilbur, a Charlotte County resident, has lived in several regions of New Brunswick and Canada. In Montreal, she discovered her passion for music and for making musical instruments. Wilbur began her career in Salt Lake City, Utah, studying how violins are constructed. She pursued her studies and then returned to New Brunswick, where she opened a violin-making business. She is still a luthier, working with a number of the province's musicians.

"I am certain that each of the new members has a wealth of experience that will be very useful to the New Brunswick Arts Board, and I wish them the best of luck," said Albert.

The arts board is a para-governmental agency with a mandate to support professional artists financially. This funding enables them to participate in professional development sessions, create works involving the community, take part in shows and promote their works and their talent. The arts board receives most of its operating budget from the Department of Wellness, Culture and Sport.

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MEDIA CONTACTS: Elizabeth Joubert, communications, Department of Wellness, Culture and Sport, 506-457-6445; Vanessa Moeller, deputy managing director, New Brunswick Arts Board, 506-444-4696.

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