Our Board of Directors are volunteers from the community, with diverse backgrounds in arts, business, and community development.

Representatives are appointed to the Board and all other Directors are voted in at our Annual General Meeting each year. All Art Gallery of Burlington Members are invited to attend the AGM to exercise their voting rights, including voting for Board of Directors candidates.

Thanks to AGB’s Board of Directors’ talents, experience, and efforts, we have a focused vision and mission and we are actively developing approaches to meet our strategic goals for serving the community.

Jane Depraitere, Board Chair

Jane is an entrepreneurial business professional with over 25 years of diverse business experience in the fields of Finance, Investment Management, Law, and Wine Importation & Distribution including development & launch of three successful businesses. Jane received her LLB and was called to the Bar of Ontario in 1984. She completed her CGA designation in 1998 followed by an MBA in 2005. Most recently, in 2015, she completed the Level 3 Sommelier designation from the Wine and Spirits Education Trust. Jane has held various directorship and membership positions on the boards of several not-for-profit and for-profit companies from 1995 to the present.

Gokcin Nalsok, Vice Chair

Gokcin is a Partner at SimpsonWigle LAW LLP and is engaged in a general corporate and commercial law practice that includes commercial and residential real estate law. Her services include incorporating and organizing companies both provincially and federally, preparing partnership and shareholder agreements; advising clients on business transactions relating to corporate share options plans, option agreements and optinee shareholder agreements and corporate re-structuring, including amalgamations, reorganization and acquisitions; preparing security documents relating to convertible debentures, general security agreements, share pledge agreements, guarantees, and promissory notes; preparation of share purchase agreements and asset purchase agreements with ancillary closing documents; preparing and reviewing general contracts and agreements for businesses including manufacturing agreements, franchise agreements, franchise disclosure documentation, license agreements, purchase order agreements, web, and design services agreements, commercial leases and consulting agreements and preparing and closing purchase, sale and refinancing closing documents for businesses and residential real estate.

Susan Busby, Secretary

Susan Busby is a retired Educator who worked as a teacher and Elementary School Principal for the Halton District School Board for 30 years. She has an undergraduate degree in History and a Masters of Education. In her retirement, she has volunteered extensively within the community. She was Chair of the Board at Nelson Youth Centres, Chair of the Board at the Halton Learning Foundation, Chair of the Board of Governors at Joseph Brant Hospital, and Chair of the Joseph Brant Hospital Foundation Board. She has worked on fundraising event committees for all of these organizations as well as Big Brothers, Big Sisters of Halton, the Art Gallery of Burlington, Burlington Flood Relief and in support of Breast Cancer services and equipment. She was a member of the Our New Era Campaign Cabinet in support of the Redevelopment of Joseph Brant Hospital. She was honoured in 2014 to receive the Outstanding Volunteer Fundraiser Award from the Association of Fundraising Professionals, Golden Horseshoe Chapter. In 2017, Susan received sesquicentennial recognition for her community service from both the Provincial and Federal Governments. Susan has lived in Burlington since 1975 with her husband Bob. They have two adult children and three grandchildren. In her leisure time, Susan likes to travel, read, knit and remain physically active.

Tom Sawchuk, Treasurer

Tom Sawchuk is a Partner with DJB Chartered Professional Accountants.  Tom is the Partner-in-Charge in the Burlington office and is a member of the Construction and Real Estate niche group at DJB.  His core practice involves providing audit and assurance services to owner-managed businesses; he also has experience in providing business, financial, and tax consulting services to both individuals and corporations throughout the Hamilton, Halton and Niagara regions. Tom joined DJB upon graduation from Brock University in 2002 with an Honours Bachelor of Accounting degree. Tom qualified as a Chartered Professional Accountant in 2005, was appointed to Manager in January 2007 and admitted to Partnership in January 2017. Tom has served as the Treasurer for the Niagara West Tourism Association and Twenty Valley Golf & Country Club. He has also served as Vice President and President of the Lincoln Chamber of Commerce and as a member of the Community Investment Panel for the United Way of St. Catharines & District. Tom is currently a director of the Hamilton Health Sciences Volunteer Association, Treasurer for the Art Gallery of Burlington and he also donates his time to several not for profit and charity organizations.

Angelo Bentivenga

Angelo is a Burlington City Councillor for Ward 6. Angelo has been a self-employed executive and consultant in the hospitality industry with strengths in optimizing budgets, productivity, operations and ultimately the bottom lines of corporations. He has worked with many restaurants and retail businesses over the last 40 years. Educated in Montreal at Loyola University in the arts program, and later at McGill University in the Faculty of Education. Prior to becoming a Councillor, Angelo created a 100% cost-free event called “Beauty and the Bistro.” With the help of friends and local businesses, the event raised $450,000 to purchase a state-of-the-art digital mammography machine with a biopsy attachment for Joseph Brant Hospital. Angelo is also one of three founding members of the “Gift of Giving Back,” another 100% volunteer initiative in Burlington which has become Canada’s largest food drive.

Dan Lawrie

Dan is the founder and Chairman of Lawrie Insurance Group Inc., a multi-disciplined insurance and risk management firm, that ranks in the top 5% of insurance brokerages in Canada. He previously served on the Art Gallery of Burlington Foundation Board and is the recipient of many community awards, including recognition as Hamilton’s Citizen of the Year, Burlington Chamber of Commerce – Distinguished Entrepreneur of the Year, Edward C. Bovey Business for the Arts nominee and recipient of The Incite Award for the Arts. He is the founder and creator of the Dan Lawrie International Sculpture Collection at the Royal Botanical Gardens and has been involved with many public art projects with organizations like the Joseph Brant Museum and the Burlington Performing Arts Centre. As an active community volunteer, Dan has served on many committees and boards, including the Hamilton Chamber of Commerce, Better Business Bureau of South Central Ontario, The Burlington Economic Development Committee, Burlington Flood Relief, United Way, The Hamilton Club, Canadian Brokers Network Group, and Angel One Investors Network. Dan is a long time Burlington resident and continues to be involved in many businesses and not for profit organizations.

Julia Yousie

Julia Yousie has been a member of the Art Gallery of Burlington since 2013. Julia is a Senior Partner at Crosswater Partners, a strategy consulting firm, where she works with Boards of Directors to deliver value to stakeholders through stakeholder research, customized strategy facilitation, and stress-testing processes. Julia has served as Chair of the Board of the United Way of Oakville, and Chair of the Board of Tele-Touch Seniors (Acclaim Health). She has worked with not-for-profit boards to enhance organizational capacity, particularly in the areas of strategic planning and board governance.