Judy Foote

The Honourable Judy Foote

Honorary Patron Theatre Newfoundland Labrador

Dear Friends,

For almost 40 years, Theatre Newfoundland Labrador has set the stage for magical experiences. And for 25 of those years, much of the magic has been happening in the small rural community of Cow Head on Newfoundland’s Northern Peninsula in the heart of Gros Morne National Park. This is the setting for the very successful Gros Morne Theatre Festival. Attracting thousands of visitors each year, The Gros Morne Theatre Festival has been the creative nucleus of a scene that exports the best of Newfoundland and Labrador theatre throughout Canada and around the world, while bringing stories and talent from around the world to our Province.

I have seen firsthand the benefits of a vigorous and local theatre scene in building professional careers and revitalizing rural communities. We can all play a part in telling our stories. Thank you to the volunteers and staff who support Theatre Newfoundland Labrador. I offer my best wishes for continued success.

Yours Sincerely,

Hon. Judy M. Foote, P.C., O.N.
Lieutenant Governor of Newfoundland and Labrador
Honorary Patron, Theatre Newfoundland Labrador

The Honourable Brian Tobin

Campaign Chair

The Hon. Brian Tobin is currently Vice Chair with BMO Capital Markets in Toronto, ON. In 2013, Mr. Tobin was named as an Officer of the Order of Canada for his contribution to Canadian public policy as a federal and provincial politician, and for supporting economic development in Newfoundland and Labrador.

Mr. Tobin served as the Federal Minister of Industry from October 2000 to January 2002, prior to which he served as the Premier of Newfoundland and Labrador from 1996 to 2000.  Mr. Tobin served as a Member of Parliament from 1980 to 1996 and served as Minister of Fisheries and Oceans in the federal cabinet from 1993 to 1996. 

In addition to his role with BMO Capital Markets, Mr. Tobin also serves as Chairman and director of New Flyer Industries Inc., Chairman and director of Aecon Group Inc.  and is Chairman and director of Element Fleet Corp.

Mr. Tobin also served as Executive Chairman, President & CEO of Consolidated Thompson Iron Mines Ltd.  Mr. Tobin lead the negotiating team that sold CLM to Cliffs Natural Resources for 4.9 billion dollars which was one of the biggest global mining deals in 2011.

Mr. Tobin is a member of the Institute of Corporate Directors and a graduate of the Directors Education Program.  Mr. Tobin has been awarded honorary degrees by both St. Francis Xavier University and Brock University.

Gary Anstey

Gary Anstey

Cabinet Member

Anstey and Associates

Gary Anstey has an extensive consulting background in resource-based industries, primarily in the oil and gas, mining, and forestry sectors where he has advised clients on government-related and public policy issues. He has high-level marketing experience as a former Partner and Senior Executive at two award-winning advertising and public relations firms based in St. John’s.

Gary also has invaluable direct government experience as a former Chief of Staff to the Hon. Brian Tobin while he served as Minister of Fisheries and Oceans in Ottawa. Anstey also served as Communications Advisor and Senior Policy Advisor to the Hon. Bill Rompkey, a former Minister of State for Mines, Minister of State for Transport, and Minister of State for Small Business and Tourism.

Some of the world class projects and or clients Gary has consulted with include: Consolidated Thompson Ltd., Voisey’s Bay Nickel Co. Ltd. (VBN/Inco), Cliff Natural Resources, Iron Ore Company of Canada, Hibernia (Petro Canada, Exxon Mobil), White Rose (Husky Energy), Terra Nova (Petro-Canada), Albright and Wilson, and the Canadian Association of Petroleum Producers (CAAP), Newfoundland Power and Fortis Inc. Gary currently works with a number of Canadian companies as a Consultant in the areas of Government Relations and Corporate Development notably, North Atlantic Refinery (NL), Kruger Inc. (QC), Tacora Resources (USA), and Accerta (ON) and The Royal Conservatory of Music.

Paul G. Antle

Cabinet Member

Pluto Investments Inc.

An award-winning serial entrepreneur Paul Antle is founder and currently CEO of Pluto Investments Inc., a company focused on small to mid-sized private equity acquisitions.  Pluto currently holds majority interests in businesses ranging from ship repair and automotive to environmental, with minority equity positions in many technology-based firms.

He is a native of St. John’s, NL and possesses a Bachelor of Science Degree in Chemistry (MUN), a Master of Engineering Degree (Chemical, UNB) and is a graduate of the Harvard Business School where his classmates voted him co-valedictorian.

From 1997 – 2017, Paul was a director of the Newfoundland Symphony Orchestra serving as Chair for a period of eight years. His philanthropic causes today include Chair of the Rainbow Riders Raise It Up Campaign that raised $6.5 million to support children with disabilities, and as Chair of the Turning The Tide Awards Program to recognize achievements in the Marine Industry. Paul is also a founding investor in the Newfoundland and Labrador Angel Network.

Paul has received many awards for his accomplishments over the years. In 2018, he was recognized as an Alumni of Distinction from the University of New Brunswick and, in 2017, was inducted into the NL Junior Achievement Business Hall of Fame. In 2015, Paul was inducted into the Atlantic Business Magazine’s Top 50 CEO Hall of Fame and was EY Atlantic Canada’s Entrepreneur of the Year in 2014. In 2012 he received Queen Elizabeth II’s Diamond Jubilee Medal for his community involvement.

Jim Burton

Jim Burton

Cabinet Member

RE/MAX Infinity Inc.

Jim Burton has been successfully selling Real Estate in St. John’s for over 30 Years. He is the host of the weekly RE/MAX Infinity Realty “Online Real Estate Show.” Jim obtained his “FRI”, Fellow of the Real Estate Institute in 1996 from The Real Estate Institute of Canada and the “MVA” Market Value Appraiser – Residential from the Canadian Real Estate Association in 1998. Founder of “The Jim Burton Sales Team” in 1998, he is a past and current facilitator of Real Estate Education & Motivational Courses for Realtors in the St. John’s area.

Jim is President of RE/MAX Infinity Realty Inc., one of Newfoundland & Labrador’s fastest growing Real Estate companies. Team Burton has been among the Top Producing Teams within the RE/MAX organization, placing in the Top Ten in Canada & Top Twenty Worldwide.

Jim also holds an Airline Transport Pilots License with 15,000 flight hours and owns and operates a seasonal airline, North Eastern Sky Services Ltd. with his deHavilland Beaver Floatplane in Labrador. He's also the operator of Igloo Lake Lodge Ltd., one of Newfoundland and Labrador’s trophy Brook Trout Lodges.

Jim is Chairperson of the Liberal Party of Canada (PTB-NL) and Vice-Chair of the Salvation Army St. John’s Advisory Council. Jim is also a member of the Atlantic Salmon Conservation Foundation. He is past Chair of the Board of Director’s of Hope Air (2011-2018), is current Chair of the Hope Air Advisory Council for Atlantic Canada and was named Hope Air’s National Volunteer of the Year in 2013. Jim has been honoured with many awards for his community contributions, including the Real Estate Institute of Canada’s (REIC) Pursuit of Excellence Award for Community Services, the 2017 Rotary Club of St. John’s Northwest’s True Rotarian award, the CLB Governor & Commandants Medallion in recognition of achievements of excellence in support of the C.L.B. and its programs in 2016, and the 2015 Humanitarian Award from the Canadian Red Cross – Newfoundland and Labrador. 

Brian Johnson

Brian Johnson

Cabinet Member

Johnson’s Construction Ltd.

Brian Johnson is president of Johnson’s Construction Ltd.  Brian has grown the company from a small family owned, resource-oriented, construction company to its current position as one of the largest general, heavy civil contractors in Newfoundland and Labrador. Brian’s extensive experience in construction over the past thirty years, combined with his innovative approach to the various obstacles that regularly arise, make his contribution to the company and to the construction industry invaluable. This strength ensures Johnson’s Construction Ltd. is able to be both effective and competitive in a very tough market. 

Brian currently sits on the board of Directors of The Heavy Civil Association of Newfoundland and Labrador and has been an active board member in various capacities since 2000. This is an influential organization which represents NL construction company’s interest in meetings and discussions with Government Departments and Agencies, Municipal Councils, Engineering Consultants and the General Public. 

Dean MacDonald

Cabinet Member

Tuckamore Capital

Mr. MacDonald has had a long and successful career as an operating executive and entrepreneur. His operating experience includes serving as the chief operating officer of Rogers Cable and as the chief executive officer of Persona Communications, a TSX-listed cable and internet services company. Mr. MacDonald worked with a syndicate of investment partners to turn around Persona’s operations and subsequently sold the business at a significant premium to its purchase price in 2007. Mr. MacDonald has also served as chairman of the Newfoundland and Labrador Energy Corporation, which manages the province’s oil and gas assets. He has management and investment experience in a number of industries, including advertising, marketing and communications. In 2007, Mr. MacDonald was selected as CEO of the Year by Birch Hill Capital Partners.

Michelle Melendy Set The Stage Cabinet Member

Michelle Melendy

Cabinet Member

Western Group of Companies

Michelle Melendy is Chief Executive Officer of the Western Group of Companies based in Corner Brook, NL. These businesses consist primarily of automotive dealerships, and also include a power sports business, a tire shop, and a commercial glass and aluminum company. Like her father before her, Michelle sees her employees as her greatest asset and always puts people first. Her philosophy is to take care of her staff so they can take care of their customers and contribute to the community.

In addition to leading the Western Group of Companies, Michelle sits on the Board of Directors of Newfoundland Power, a subsidiary of Fortis Inc. (TSX: FTS). She is also Vice-Chair of the Western Regional Hospital Foundation.

Ms. Melendy earned a Bachelor and a Master’s in Social Work from Memorial University. She also holds the ICD.D designation from the Directors Education Program of the University of Toronto’s Rotman School of Business.

In 2017, Michelle was named one of the Top 50 CEOs in Atlantic Canada by Atlantic Business Magazine.

Barry perry

Cabinet Member

Fortis Inc.

Barry V. Perry is currently the President and Chief Executive Officer of Fortis Inc. in St. John’s, NL. Barry’s career with the Fortis spans nearly 20 years. He was previously Vice President of Finance and Chief Financial Officer of the Corporation. Barry joined the Fortis Group in 2000, as Vice President of Finance and Chief Financial Officer of Newfoundland Power. He was also Vice President and Treasurer with a global forest products company and Corporate Controller with a large crude oil refinery.

Barry earned a Bachelor of Commerce (Honours) from Memorial University of Newfoundland and is a member of the Association of Chartered Professional Accountants of Newfoundland and Labrador. He serves on the Boards of FortisBC, UNS Energy and ITC Holdings Corp., all Fortis utilities. 

Barry is Chair of the Edison Electric Institute's (EEI) International Programs Trans-Atlantic Regional Advisory Committee and Co-Chair of EEI's CEO Policy Committee on Energy Delivery. He also serves on the Advisory Board of Canada’s Top 40 Under 40.

Cabinet Member, Campaign Director

Pilot° Communications

June Perry, Owner, President and CEO of Pilot Communications, has over 25 years of leadership experience in the private, government and not-for-profit sectors.  With a Master’s Degree in Learning Resources and Communications at Memorial University of Newfoundland, June has worked on communications challenges with large and small corporations and most of the healthcare boards in the province, and has extensive experience on corporate social responsibility files. June currently sits on the Board of Nalcor: Lower Churchill Management Corp., and the Smiling Land Foundation Board. She is a past Chair of Easter Seals NL and has served on the Campaign Cabinets of both Raise it Up for Rainbow Riders and the Home from The Sea Foundation in Newfoundland and Labrador. In 2014 she received Queen Elizabeth II’s Diamond Jubilee Medal for her community involvement. June is of Labrador aboriginal descent and has taken great pride in working on many projects throughout Labrador. Always ahead of the curve, June started her company in response to unmet needs in healthcare communications and then grew it to become one of Atlantic Canada’s most respected communications and marketing firms. June also owns and operates Goose Cove Retreat, an executive retreat property in Trinity, NL.

John Risley

Cabinet Member

Clearwater Seafoods

John Risley is President of CFFI Ventures Inc., a diversified holding company operating internationally. Its primary assets are significant positions in Clearwater Seafoods, Canada's largest fishing company, and in Liberty Global, the world’s biggest international TV and Broadband Company.  The company has majority or significant stakes in a portfolio of young companies ranging from financial services, renewable energy and the tech sector.

John is very active in community affairs, sitting on the Board of a number of charitable organizations.  He is Chair of Futurpreneur Canada. He regularly engages in public policy debate, is Chairman of the Atlantic Institute of Market Studies, a member of the World President’s Organization, The Chief Executives Organization and the Business Council of Canada.  He is also a graduate of Harvard University’s President’s Program in Leadership.

In 1998, John was named an Officer of the Order of Canada.  He is a member of the New York Yacht Club and the Royal Ocean Racing Club.

He lives in Chester, N.S.

Anne Whelan

Cabinet Member

Seafair Capital

Anne Whelan was appointed to the Board of Directors of the Bank of Canada in June 2018. Originating from Placentia, Newfoundland and Labrador, Ms. Whelan is principal shareholder and Chief Executive Officer of Seafair Capital, a growth-focused company with investments in community and behavioural health, wellness and safety. Guided by the core values of integrity, entrepreneurship, community, action, and fun, the Seafair team aims to ‘do well while doing good.

In addition to leading her group of companies, Ms. Whelan chairs the board of directors of Newfoundland Power, a subsidiary of Fortis Inc. (TSX: FTS). She is also a director of CSA Group, and regional vice chair of the Atlantic Provinces Economic Council (APEC). She has previously served as a board director for the Business Development Bank of Canada (BDC) and Newfoundland & Labrador Oil & Gas Industries Association (NOIA). Ms. Whelan brings her down-to-earth style and entrepreneurial passion to every conversation, contributing her time and talent to various other regional boards and community service initiatives.

Ms. Whelan has received many accolades for entrepreneurship and leadership at the national level. In 2017, she was named Startup Canada’s Entrepreneur of the Year for an outstanding impact in Canadian entrepreneurship and was awarded the P.J. Gardiner Entrepreneurship Award from Memorial University. She was named one of Canada’s 100 Most Powerful Women by the Women’s Executive Network (WXN) in 2016, named Atlantic Business Magazine’s CEO of the Year in 2014, and inducted into Atlantic Business Magazine’s Top 50 CEO Hall of Fame in 2015.  In 2012, she was awarded the Queen’s Diamond Jubilee Medal for her contributions to home care.

Ms. Whelan holds a Bachelor of Arts and a Master’s degree in Business Administration from Memorial University. She also completed advanced studies in Alternative Dispute Resolution and holds the ICD.D designation from the Directors Education Program of the University of Toronto’s Rotman School of Business.

Graham Watton Set The Stage

Graham Watton, Q.C.

Cabinet Member

Graham is a Political Science graduate of Memorial University and The University of New Brunswick Law School and took articles with the law firm of Wells, Monahan, Seaborn, and Marshall in Corner Brook under the Honourable Clyde K. Wells, Q.C.
Graham was called to the Newfoundland Bar in December 1976 and was appointed Queen’s Counsel in 1992 In recognition of his contributions to the legal profession in Newfoundland and Labrador.
Graham has been in the private practice of law in excess of 40 years, representing the interests of a diverse client base before all levels of Court in Newfoundland Labrador and before The Supreme Court of Canada.
For the past 15 years Graham has acted as general counsel for a group of companies involved in commercial and tourism projects and developments in Western Newfoundland.
Over the last 8 years Graham has also acted as general counsel for Humber Valley Resort, home of a world-class 18-hole championship golf course, the Eagles Perch and tourism-related facilities. This experience has given him a deeper connection to and understanding of our provinces tourism and hospitality industry.
Graham is married to his wife Katie of 41 years and they have three children; Deborah, Laura & Sarah; five grandchildren; Matthew, Emma, Mackenzie, Briar and Addison; and three furry felines; Jinx, Mitts & Boots. 

Derek Young

Derek Young

Cabinet Member

Ford Motor Company National Roundtable Board

Derek was a Ford franchise dealer for thirty-one years operating at four different locations throughout Western NL and Southern Labrador. Derek sold it in 2012.

He was the chair of the Ford Motor Company National Roundtable Board consisting of Ford Motor Company and Ford Dealer representatives. Its purpose was to explore business opportunities and discuss issues of concern toward a mutual resolution. He also served two years as a Director on the Federation of Automobile Dealers Association of Canada and served two years as President of the NL Dealers Association. He received MacLean's magazine's NL Dealer of Excellence Award 1996. It was an award based on business acumen, association involvement, and community contribution. His active company Rugged Edge Limited provides outdoor power equipment and DY properties Limited deals in Commercial Rentals. He was also two terms Director at Atlantic Canada Opportunities Agency and two terms Director at BMO Business Advisory Panel. He was also two terms Director at Fortis Trust Company. Charted Accountant, Ontario, 1972 & Newfoundland and Labrador 1978. He was also an Instructor of Business Finance- at Grenfell College for two years. He was Chair of Western Memorial Regional Hospital Foundation for 6 years. He was also Chair and sponsor of the Humber Motors Ford charity golf tournament for 14 years $325,000 disbursed to various local charities. He was the President of the Humber Rotary Club. He was the Director of Corner Brook Chamber of Commerce and Corner Brook Economic Development Corporation. He was the Commissioner of Independent Appoints Commission, Newfoundland and Labrador.