August 30, 2019
Dear MusicNL Members,
I write today as interim chair of MusicNL to bring you up to date on recent changes with the organization.
Over the winter and spring of 2019, MusicNL began to face serious organizational difficulties and dire financial challenges. By the end of March, several board resignations made it impossible for the board to provide effective oversight to MusicNL and certain funding partners and the bank had lost confidence. Assistance was sought from Business and Arts NL (BANL), an organization committed to assisting artists and arts-based organizations. BANL reached out to experienced members of the arts and business communities who were in a position to volunteer in the short-term, with the result being an interim working board established on April 30, 2019. Our objective was, and continues to be, the preservation of MusicNL as a key player in the provincial music industry.
I believe I speak for all interim board members when I say we recognize the last few months may have been frustrating and confusing to the music community. I assure you this board has worked, and continues to work, tirelessly on behalf of MusicNL members to return stability to the organization. To assist us, we have appointed three special advisors to the board with legal, finance, governance and funding expertise. Our goal is to return to normal operations within the next few weeks and get back to the critical work of this organization: to support its members and advance the music industry of Newfoundland and Labrador.
Over the summer, a staffing transition occurred at MusicNL due to a retirement and a resignation. Based on the organization’s current fiscal situation, one position—Operations and Program Manager—was created and an expression of interest was circulated. We are very excited to announce that this week, Sherri Breen officially joined the MusicNL team. Sherri comes with a wealth of administrative knowledge in the not for profit sector and a deep understanding and passion for the music community. She will continue to be supported in the office by two additional staff hired under the Job Creation Partnership Program through the Department of Advanced Education, Skills and Labour.
This communique is the first of a series that will be issued as this interim board continues working to restore MusicNL. Understandably, you may still have questions. I encourage you to submit those by email to email@example.com. Please understand that we will not be answering each individual email, but will strive to answer those questions as a collective in the next communication.
The Interim Board consists of:
Amy House, Chair
Ann Anderson, Board Member
David Smallwood, Board Member
Marlene Cahill, Treasurer
Thea Morash, Secretary
Detailed bios can be found here
Special Advisors to the Interim Board:
Tauna Staniland, Legal Advisor (Partner—Stewart McKelvey)
David Hood, Financial Advisor (Retired Partner—Grant Thornton)
Melanie Martin, Funding Advisor (Manager of Culture—The Department of Tourism, Culture, Industry and Innovation, Government of Newfoundland and Labrador)