FOUNDING DIRECTORS AND CURRENT DIRECTORS
The directors have accumulated many decades of experience as artists, writers, musicians, craftspeople, researchers, educators, and administrators. They have worked in university settings, for public institutions, in the broadcast industry, for private educational institutions, and in public schools throughout Canada, the United States, Europe, Africa, and Australia.
Rena Upitis (Founding President)
Dr. Rena Upitis (Ed.D., Harvard) is Professor of Education at Queen’s University and recently completed a six-year term as National Research Co-director of Learning Through the Arts, a multi-year project that brings artists to the classrooms of over 160,000 students. She is a former Dean of Education at Queen’s University (1995-2000). Rena’s research and curriculum projects have explored teacher, artist, and student transformation through the arts. Rena is a timber-frame carpenter, and has a small design practice specializing in ecologically sensitive designs and materials for residents and retreats. Her current research explores ways that students can develop ecological habits of mind through arts explorations and web-based portfolio tools.
Serena Manson (Founding Vice-President; current Director)
Serena Manson (B.Ed., Queen’s University) is a teacher with Mulberry School, a developing Waldorf school in Kingston. She strives to develop curriculum for her students that is of service to each child and to humanity, integrating the arts, environmental education and appreciation, and a kinesthetic approach to learning. Serena is an avid gardener and conservationist. She lives within the Frontenac Arch Biosphere Reserve, where Wintergreen is also located, in a heritage home that has provided her with opportunities to engage in renovation, building, and design.
Helen Turnbull (Founding Secretary; currently Secretary-Treasurer)
Helen Turnbull (B.Ed., Queen’s) is a Principal with Kawartha Pine Ridge District School Board. She brings over a decade of administrative experience to the position. She has been involved with curriculum development for over two decades, including the co-creation, with Rena Upitis, of a high-school cooperative placement program at the Wintergreen site for students in French Immersion. This award-winning program ran for three years in the mid-1990s at Wintergreen before being located at the Ganaraska Forest Centre. Helen lives in a heritage home near Gores Landing, Ontario, and has also been involved in extensive building, renovation, and design projects.
Ann Patteson (Founding Treasurer; term ended September 2010)
Dr. Ann Patteson (Ph.D., Queen’s) is the International/National Director of Research for Learning Through the Arts (LTTA) at The Royal Conservatory of Music (Toronto) and is currently developing the new Research Division of The Institute of Creativity, Health and Social Change at The Conservatory. Ann brings twenty-five years of experience as an educator of adults to her work at Wintergreen. In her research, Ann explores the impact of arts-infused education, as well as how the arts may foster understanding of human responsibility to all of earth’s inhabitants and the environment.
Katharine Smithrim (Founding Director; currently Vice-President)
Dr. Katharine Smithrim (Ph.D., Eastman) teaches courses in music and the arts at Queen’s University. Over the last thirty years she has taught music programs privately, and in schools, community colleges and universities. In the 1980s Katharine pioneered music programs for parents with babies and toddlers in Toronto. Along with Bob McGrath of Sesame Street, she has made two commercial recordings: The Baby Record and Songs and Games for Toddlers, the latter a Juno nominee and now a Golden Book Video. Her recent research has focuses on spiritual dimensions in teaching and learning.
Lawrence Scanlan (Current Director)
A writer and editor and a veteran journalist, Lawrence Scanlan’s most recent book, A Year of Living Generously, is about philanthropy and generosity of spirit. It was published by Douglas &McIntyre in the spring of 2010. The eldest of eight siblings, Lawrence Scanlan grew up in a three-bedroom, bunk bed-filled bungalow in a Toronto suburb. His father ran the church hockey and baseball leagues and his sons would all become coaches and his daughters all volunteered in the community. His mother, a geriatric nurse, set an example of understated compassion. When she died several years ago, Lawrence began to ponder her legacy, the mark we humans make in this world and the role of generosity in our daily lives. His most recent book is the outcome of that pondering. Lawrence has been a journalist for almost four decades, working with daily newspapers (editor of The Nelson Daily News in B.C., literary editor of The Whig-Standard in Ontario), magazines (managing editor of Harrowsmith), and in radio with two national CBC programs (producer on Morningside and Writers & Company). He has won numerous prizes for his writing, including three National Magazine Awards. Lawrence is the author or co-author of fifteen books, on subjects ranging from horses to hockey to home. He has a home in Kingston, Ontario, and a cabin in Prince Edward County.
Lorna Crozier has published 14 books of poetry which have garnered Canada’s top awards, including the Governor-General’s Award, two Pat Lowther Awards and the National Magazine Award’s Gold Medal for Poetry. She is a Distinguished Professor at the University of Victoria and a fellow of the Royal Society of Canada. In 2005 she read at a command performance for Queen Elizabeth II. Her most recent work, The Book of Marvels, defies categorization — it is poetry, essay, fact, and fiction. Her publisher describes it as “a series of playful and startling prose meditations, celebrated writer Lorna Crozier brings her rapt attention to the small matter of household objects: everything from doorknobs, washing machines, rakes, and zippers to the kitchen sink.” Two universities have awarded Lorna honorary doctorates for her contribution to Canadian literature, and in 2011 she was invested as an Officer of the Order of Canada. She is a frequent guest on CBC radio and has read her poetry on every continent except Antarctica. A bilingual Spanish edition of her poems called La Perspectiva Del Gato was published in Mexico in 2009. Her most recent publication is Small Beneath the Sky, A Prairie Memoir. Her poems have been set to music, made into a film and used as themes in paintings and pottery. She conducted writing retreats at Wintergreen in the summers of 2010 and 2011 to much acclaim. Called “a poet to be grateful for” by Margaret Laurence, she has been an ambassador for poetry wherever she goes.
Lawrence Hill is the son of American immigrants — a black father and a white mother — who came to Canada the day after they married in 1953 in Washington, D.C. On his father’s side, Hill’s grandfather and great grandfather were university-educated, ordained ministers of the African Methodist Episcopal Church. His mother came from a Republican family in Oak Park, Illinois, graduated from Oberlin College and went on to become a civil rights activist in D.C. The story of how they met, married, left the United States and raised a family in Toronto is described in Hill’s bestselling memoir Black Berry, Sweet Juice: On Being Black and White in Canada (HarperCollins Canada, 2001). Much of Hill’s writing touches on issues of identity and belonging. Lawrence Hill’s third novel was published as The Book of Negroes in Canada and the UK, and as Someone Knows My Name in the USA, Australia and New Zealand. It won the overall Commonwealth Writers’ Prize for Best Book, the Rogers Writers’ Trust Fiction Prize, and the Ontario Library Association’s Evergreen Award. Hill is also the author of the novels Any Known Blood and Some Great Thing. His most recent non-fiction book, The Deserter’s Tale: the Story of an Ordinary Soldier Who Walked Away from the War in Iraq (written with Joshua Key), was published around the world. He is currently finishing a new novel, adapting The Book of Negroes for a six-part TV miniseries, and writing and preparing to deliver the 2013 Massey Lectures. Formerly a reporter with The Globe and Mail and The Winnipeg Free Press, Hill has lived and worked across Canada, in Baltimore, and in Spain and France. He is an honorary patron of Crossroads International, for which he travelled as a volunteer to the West African countries Niger, Cameroon and Mali. Hill is also a member of the Council of Patrons of the Black Loyalist Heritage Society, and of the Advisory Council of Book Clubs for Inmates. He has a B.A. in economics from Laval University and an M.A. in writing from Johns Hopkins University. Hill lives in Hamilton, Ontario. For more information, visit: www.lawrencehill.com.
CONSULTANTS AND EMPLOYEES
Karen Smereka is the Operations Manager at Wintergreen. She joined the staff in December, 2010 and brings years of relevant experience to the position. In her “non-Wintergreen life”, she is a biologist, teacher, yoga instructor, and outdoor and environmental enthusiast. Karen can be reached at email@example.com.
Claire Grady-Smith is the Marketing and Communications Director for Wintergreen Studios and Wintergreen Studios Press. She has a Master’s degree in Cultural Studies from Queen’s University, and over ten years of experience in not-for-profit cultural organizations as a visual artist, independent curator, grant writer, and marketing director.
Louise Cooper joined Wintergreen as a casual kitchen employee in the spring of 2012 and is now the Facilities Manager. Louise brings a varied background to her work, ranging from organic gardening, to restaurant cooking, to off-grid engineering! We are delighted to have her join our staff and savour her culinary creations.
Dawson Hamilton joined us in January, 2010, as Director of Marketing and Communications, remaining until January, 2011. The position was funded in part by the Frontenac Community Futures Development Corporation for the 2010 calendar year. If you’d like to reach Dawson, please email him at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Linda G. Ross is the Strategic Marketing Advisor for Wintergreen. Linda’s unique approach to marketing and communications connects Wintergreen to new ideas, strategies, and people. She is helping Wintergreen build an online community to demonstrate our off-grid perspective on mindful living and creative work. Click here to reach Linda directly.