2020 Annual General Meeting

Ontario Museum Association 2020 Annual General Meeting

The Ontario Museum Association will hold its 2020 Annual General Meeting in October. 

To download the Nominations Form, click HERE. Please send all completed Nominations forms to mlalonde@museumsontario.ca.

Please contact the OMA for more information about voting privileges or the Annual General Meeting.

Proxy form and agenda will be available in the fall.


Ontario Museum Association Council Nominations 2020/2021

The Nominations Committee for 2020 is composed of Committee Chair and OMA Past President, Petal Furness, OMA Councilor, Nathan Etherington (Brant Historical Society), and three members elected by the membership at the 2019 Annual General Meeting in Brantford, Ontario: Ron Gostlin (Muskoka Heritage Place), Rebecca Hicks (City of Hamilton), and Lois Fenton (Atikokan Centennial Museum & Heritage Park).

The responsibility to select candidates best suited to lead the Association requires thoughtful planning and attention to skills / areas of expertise currently required by the Council for its Strategic Plan implementation; therefore, the OMA adheres to the practice of not accepting nominations from the floor at the Annual General Meeting.   





Second Year of a First Two-Year Term

Petal Furness is the Manager of Grey Roots Museum & Archives. Prior to managing, she led the Heritage Interpretation team for ten years developing in-house exhibits, events and programs. Born in Vancouver and raised in foster care, she chose to pursue Native Studies. Petal’s love for history and storytelling became her career; she worked summers as an Aboriginal student at Fort Langley N.H.S, and relocated to Parks Canada’s regional office in Calgary to take the position of Heritage Interpretation Specialist and later, Aboriginal Liaison. Petal traveled across Canada working with Indigenous groups, helping them tell their stories – primarily liaising with the Haida and the Siksika (Blackfoot) First Nations. In 1999 she relocated her family to Owen Sound, to lead the Ontario Native Literacy Coalition and then Ningwakwe Learning Press. Petal is a professional photographer taking lots of pictures of her three sons, one daughter, and almost 4 grandchildren. Petal offers cross-cultural presentations on Indigenous history by sharing her story descending from the Secwepemc people (pronounced suh-Wep-muhc) or Shuswap people. Petal explores her matrilineal timeline going back to the first newcomer arriving in the 1840s, and leads participants in an empathic exercise, allowing participants to put themselves in Indigenous shoes.

“I have truly enjoyed the past two years serving as President of the OMA board. I have the utmost respect and admiration for the other members of the board and for the amazing staff of the OMA and the work that we accomplish.”



Second Year of a First Two-Year Term

Paul Robertson became the City of Kingston’s first City Curator in 2011. He holds degrees in journalism and Canadian history. A material history specialist and social historian for 30 years, Paul learned his trade working in federal institutions in Ottawa, including the Canadian Museum of Civilization (now the Canadian Museum of History) and community museums in Kingston. Paul’s currently leads the curatorial team interpreting community history at Kingston’s two municipal museums and historic City Hall. Paul seeks to build stronger working connections between museums and governments that help all institutions to meet their mandates and the needs of our communities more effectively.

“Ontario has a rich tapestry of museums and historic sites – without them, we would be significantly diminished. Museums today face a growing opportunity to reflect and respond to the changing face of Ontario in a way that is diverse and inclusive of all residents. I am excited to have an opportunity to play a role in fulfilling the vision in Ontario’s Museums 2025 plan as it becomes a reality. As a member of OMA Council, I hope my experience working in the cultural heritage sector at the national, provincial and local levels can continue to benefit the Ontario museum community as we work together to build a sustainable and responsive museum sector.”



Second Year of a First Two-Year Term

Cathy Molloy is the Director of Markham Museum.  Working in the most demographically diverse city in Canada, Markham Museum has developed a program direction where the entire community feels welcome. Through the examination of basic human technologies that we have in common, Markham Museum creates a shared understanding of our past and present day. Cathy’s educational background is a mix of archaeology and accounting, with work experience in both the corporate and museum world.

“Although we have come a very long way, Museums still struggle to validate their relevance to their community. Many government and business leaders recognize the benefits that Museums bring to quality of life and economic development. However, we need to continue to work with our stakeholders to ensure we stay connected to our communities. The OMA is a venue to help all Ontario museums learn and develop, and help us continue the good work that we all do. I look forward to working with the OMA and the larger Museum community.”



Second Year of a First Two-Year Term

Sonia is responsible for the management of cultural heritage resources for the City of Hamilton.  Her most recent work includes the Downtown Built Heritage Inventory Project, a cross departmental initiative between the Heritage Resource Management section and Cultural Heritage Planning.  This project was a departure from traditional built heritage inventories through its inclusion of the community in developing an understanding of the value placed on heritage resources.  Sonia believes that the inclusion of community is critical in developing a better understanding of the role Museums plays in our society.  Prior to her current position, Sonia held Curatorial positions at both Whitehern Historic House and Garden and Dundurn National Historic Site.  Sonia has a Bachelor of Arts, History with post graduate work in Museum Studies, Cultural Management and Leadership.

“Increasingly, communities are recognising heritage as having both social and cultural capital.  Our Museums enhance communities by providing a tangible connection to the past and emphasizing a community’s identity and sense of self while encouraging community cohesion.  By better understanding the role which museums play in society and the value derived from a “visit”, we can better position our institutions for the future.  The OMA is a venue which encourages these ideas of sustainability and encourages development in our field through shared learning.  I look forward to connecting with colleagues across the Province through the OMA Council.”



Second Year of a First Two-Year Term

Born and raised in Chatham Ontario, Michael has been Executive Director/Curator of the Mississippi Valley Textile Museum since July 1, 2007. He studied Fine Arts at Fanshawe College in London Ontario, before receiving a diploma in Applied Museum Studies from Algonquin College in Ottawa. He was employed as Assistant Curator at the Diefenbunker, Canada's Cold War Museum, and then Program Coordinator for Young Canada Works in Heritage Organizations with the Canadian Museums Association. He has served on the Council of Heritage Organizations Ottawa, as well as the Lanark County Tourism Association board of directors and the Municipality of Mississippi Mills Downtown Almonte Heritage District Study Committee and the Community Heritage Ontario Board of Directors. He currently sits on the Heritage Advisory Committee, and the River Walk Working Group for the Municipality of Mississippi Mills and is part of the Lanark County Museum Network. Michael also, sits on the Ontario Historical Societies, Museums Advisory Committee. Michael is the 2014 Cultural Achievement Award winner for the Young Award within the Municipality of Mississippi Mills.

“From my experience of being on the OMA’s “Looking Ahead” Steering Committee and the 2017 Conference Planning Committee, I have gained insight into the way forward for Ontario museums. With 20 years of experience working in the field, mostly in a small-town museum setting, I would like to give insight into the challenges of small museums. A primary interest is to work on a committee to assess operational funding for small museums in Ontario, specifically to reassess (increase) CMOG funding for museums that meet CMOG standards, and to explore a renewed definition of museums.”