Mayor's Arts Award for Philanthropy

Portrait photo of Donald Shumka

2017 recipient

Donald Shumka

A native British Columbian, Donald Shumka was born and raised in the Okanagan Valley, graduated from UBC and received an MBA from Harvard University. A firm believer in the role of arts and culture in creating better communities as well as being a catalyst for the new economy, he has been contributing to community organizations for more than 40 years.

Shumka has served as Chair of the Board of Emily Carr University of Art + Design (1986-1993), Ballet BC (1992-2002), and BC Arts Council (2002-2009). In 2003, he co-founded Friends of Carnegie to bring the arts to the Downtown Eastside. He remains heavily involved with fundraising efforts at Emily Carr, and sits on the Chair’s Advisory Committee at Science World.In 2010, he established the Balindwana Education Fund to provide high school education for 100 girls annually in rural Malawi, the first 15 have now entered university.

Past recipients

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Hassan Khosrowshahi


	Hassan Khosrowshahi (left) and Nezhat Khosrowshahi (right), Mayors Arts Award for PhilanthropyHassan Khosrowshahi is chairman of Persis Group of Companies. He has been appointed to the Order of Canada and the Order of British Columbia, and was inducted into the Business Laureates of BC Hall of Fame. His memberships, directorships and chairs (former and present) include: the Bank of Canada (board of directors), the Fraser Institute (former chairman), Canadian Business Council, Business Council of British Columbia (board of governors), the Smithsonian’s Freer Gallery of Art and Arthur M. Sackler Gallery, and the Leading Edge Endowment Fund. He is an honorary fellow of the Sauder School of Business. The Khosrowshahi family have supported Museum of Anthropology, National Gallery of Canada, Vancouver Opera, Vancouver Symphony Society, and Audain Art Museum Foundation.

Nezhat Khosrowshahi


Nezhat Khosrowshahi has devoted time to her charitable and community interests since 1983. Her memberships, directorships and chairs (present and former) include: the Vancouver Symphony Foundation, CBC Radio-Canada, the National Gallery of Canada, YVR Art Foundation, and Vancouver Symphony Society. She continues to be a sustaining supporter of the Vancouver Symphony, and in 2010, through Vancouver Symphony Foundation, she endowed the Principal Cello Chair. From 2010 to 2013, she volunteered for the Museum of Anthropology, UBC. In 1999, she was the recipient of “Outside Lines” B.C. Arts & Culture Award and in 2013 was a recipient of Queen’s Diamond Jubilee award.

Leonard Schein


Leonard Schein is the founder of the Vancouver International Film Festival and Festival Cinemas, which operated the Fifth Avenue Cinemas, and the Park and Ridge Theatres. He is also a retired registered psychologist.

He is currently on the board of directors of these organizations:

  • Canadian Cancer Prevention Centre Foundation
  • Coast Mental Health Foundation
  • Ecojustice
  • InspireHealth
  • Schein Foundation

Leonard has served on many boards, including:

  • Canadian Cancer Society
  • Vancouver Economic Development Commission
  • BC Film
  • BC CHILD Foundation
  • Vancouver Fringe Festival
  • Cambie Village Business Association
  • Karen Jamieson Dance Company
  • Vancouver Jewish Film Festival Society
  • British Columbia Psychological Association

He has been awarded the:

  • Queen Elizabeth II Diamond Jubilee Medal
  • British Columbia Community Achievement Award
  • British Columbia Entertainment Hall of Fame Walk Star
  • University of Regina Lifetime Achievement Award
  • Westside Business Person of the Year Award
  • Achievement Award for Contribution to the British Columbia Film Industry
  • Canadian Picture Pioneers Ancillary Award

Marnie Carter


Marnie Carter, 2014 Mayor's Arts Award for Philanthropy honoureeMarnie Carter is a musician and philanthropist who is passionate about the arts and takes a personal interest in all the projects she supports. Born in Winnipeg, Marnie studied piano in Winnipeg, Toronto, Montreal, and London, England. She was married to the late Howard Carter, founder of the Carter Auto Group, and raised her family while maintaining an active piano and accompanying career.

After moving to Vancouver in 1963, Marnie became a volunteer and patron for many artistic and charitable organizations. Currently, she is on the board of the Vancouver Symphony Orchestra Foundation and the New Car Dealers’ Foundation, among others.

In 2000, she established her own charitable foundation. In 2005, the Marnie Carter Music Scholarship at the University of BC was created.

Still active as a pianist, she encourages all styles of music and regularly opens her home for fundraising where she loves to personally cater from her famous kitchen.

Anndraya Luui


2013 Philanthropy Honouree Anndraya LuuiAnndraya Luui was born and raised in Vancouver and has spent much of her later years developing an appreciation for the arts. In addition to maintaining a full schedule of subscriptions to several organizations, Luui serves as a director on the boards of Centre A, the Vancouver International Centre for Contemporary Asian Art, the Dance Foundation, the Dance Centre Society, DanceHouse, and Wen Wei Dance.

She is interested in public and youth outreach, audience building, arts business and marketing, and fundraising development. She also supports other diverse organizations including the Simon Fraser University Woodward’s School for the Contemporary Arts, the Downtown Eastside Women’s Centre, and various animal welfare groups. Luui is appreciative of the opportunities she’s had to collaborate with Centre A, the Dance Centre, the Cultch, and DanceHouse and in outreach work with DanceHouse, Ballet BC and others for Kids Up Front.

Michael Audain


2012 Honouree Michael AudainMichael Audain is chairman of Polygon Homes Ltd., one of British Columbia’s leading home builders. He is a fifth generation British Columbian, educated at the University of British Columbia.

An active supporter of the arts, Audain is chair of the Vancouver Art Gallery Foundation and the Audain Foundation for the Visual Arts, and vice chair of the National Gallery of Canada Foundation.

Audain has been appointed to the Order of Canada and the Order of British Columbia. He has also been honoured with the Queen’s Diamond and Golden Jubilee Medals, the Business for the Arts Edmund C. Bovey Award, honorary doctoral degrees from three universities, and the British Columbia Museums Association Distinguished Service Award.

Married to Yoshiko Karasawa, Audain has two children and four grandchildren, all of whom reside in British Columbia.

Fei and Milton Wong


2011 Philanthropy Honourees Fei and Milton WongFei and Milton Wong were both born and raised in Vancouver and understand the importance of the arts in further developing the culture of the city.

Fei has always been generous with her time as the former president of the Goh Ballet Vancouver Society, a non-profit group supporting young dancers. As a board member of the Canadiana Fund, she finds other art enthusiasts to donate their treasures to the State Collection of Canada to house in the seven official residences.

Milton played a pivotal role in establishing several high-profile institutions and events around Vancouver, resulting in his receipt of the Freedom of the City of Vancouver award this year.

The couple have supported many art initiatives, ranging from national art exhibitions to community-based art galleries, such as the Centre A, Vancouver's International Centre for Contemporary Asian Art. Most notable are their generous donation to the Simon Fraser University Downtown campus School for the Contemporary Arts and lending their names to the Fei & Milton Wong Experimental Theatre.

The 2011 peer jury was Victoria Auston, Marla Norrad, and Ann McDonell.

Dr Yosef Wosk


2010 Honouree Yosef WoskDr Yosef Wosk was described by Vancouver Magazine as one of the city’s “Rebel Brains and Public Intellectuals”, and the Vancouver Sun identified him as one of the “Top Ten BC Thinkers”.

To support literature and literacy, he endowed Vancouver’s Poet Laureate, revitalized Libraries Across Borders, and has donated to the Vancouver Public Library, the Vancouver Foundation, and the Vancouver International Writers and Readers Festival.

Yosef has also sponsored the Alcuin Society Awards for Excellence in Book Design in Canada, The Robert R. Reid Award for Lifetime Achievement in Canadian Book Arts, and the Vancouver Antiquarian Book Fair.

A Distinguished Patron of the Vancouver Academy of Music and a founder of the Dena Wosk School of Performing Arts, he is also a Principal Founding Benefactor of The Dance Centre, a Founding Pillar of the Vancouver Heritage Foundation, and has been a major supporter of Presentation House Gallery and the Carter Wosk BC Creative Achievement Awards for Applied Art and Design.

Among his numerous accolades are The Vancouver Board of Trade “Spirit of Vancouver Award,” an Award for Outstanding Achievement from the Canadian Museums Association, and induction into the Order of British Columbia.

The 2010 peer jury was Victoria Auston, Marla Norrad, and Ann McDonell.

Michael O'Brian


2009 Honouree Michael O'BrianMichael O'Brian is a successful BC-based investor/businessman and dedicated arts philanthropist. He is president of Nairbo Investments Inc, and has been involved with the securities industry for over 40 years. He is a director of several publicly traded companies, an advisor to a number of investment funds, and with his wife, Dr. Inna Vlassev O’Brian, is an avid art collector and is actively involved in community affairs.

Mr O’Brian is a generous and long-standing supporter of visual arts organizations such as the Vancouver Art Gallery, the Contemporary Art Gallery, the A-Centre, Arts Umbrella, and the Western Front. He gives his time to mentor, guide, and network with young Vancouver artists.

His commitment to the visual arts is reflected by his volunteer work for the boards of institutions such as the Museum of Anthropology and the Vancouver Art Gallery. He is a long-standing supporter of the Vancouver Symphony, Vancouver Opera, Health Arts Society, and Vancouver Voices. Mr O’Brian is also an active member of the Dean’s Advisory Board for the Faculty of Arts at the University of British Columbia.

The 2009 peer jury was Victoria Auston and Yulanda Faris.

Yulanda Faris


Ms Faris, Chair of Vancouver Opera Foundation and Founder of the Judith Forst Fund for Young Artist Training, was born in Jamaica where she developed her passion for the arts. After graduating from McGill University, she moved to Vancouver in 1974.

She has served as president of the Judith Marcuse Dance Company, as a board member of the Vancouver International Writers’ Festival and Family Services of the North Shore, and as a volunteer at the Vancouver Art Gallery, for UNICEF and at St-Paul’s Hospital.

She continues to support the Downtown Women’s Eastside Centre, Covenant House, Music in the Morning, the Vancouver Symphony, the Vancouver Children’s Festival, Bard on the Beach, and the Vancouver Opera Guild. She is also on the Advisory Board for the Dean of UBC’s Faculty of Arts and Channel M. She was honoured in 2007 by the Minerva Foundation for BC Women with its Women in Music Award.

The 2008 peer jury was Sue Cormier, Erik Dierks, Dr. Stephen Drance, Diane Filer, Martha Lou Henley, Susan K.E. Howard, Paul Larocque, Paddy MacLeod, and Donna Spencer.