TORONTO | MONTREAL, January 31, 2017 – The Academy of Canadian Cinema & Television is pleased to announce that industry powerhouse and former CEO of the Canadian Academy Helga Stephenson will receive this year’s Academy Board of Directors’ Tribute, sponsored by National Bank of Canada. Academy Board of Directors’ Tribute is presented to an individual for their outstanding and enduring contributions to Canadian film and television. The Canadian Screen Awards will be broadcast live on CBC from Toronto’s Sony Centre for the Performing Arts on Sunday, March 12, 2017 at 8 pm (9 pm AT; 9:30 pm NT).
“Helga’s passion, commitment and strong leadership have been the force behind the growth and re-invention of a number of cultural organizations. She is a tireless and dynamic supporter of the arts and artists everywhere,” said Academy Chair Martin Katz. “On behalf of the Board of Directors, I offer my warmest gratitude to Helga for her invaluable contributions to the Canadian film and television landscape.”
Ms. Stephenson has contributed decades of creative and successful work to the Canadian entertainment industry. She was a driving force behind the establishment of the Toronto International Film Festival and served as the CEO of the Academy of Canadian Cinema & Television from 2011 to 2016, spearheading the merger of the Canadian Academy’s film, television and digital media awards into the Canadian Screen Awards. Co-founder of Human Rights Watch in Canada, Ms. Stephenson also serves as Chair of the Toronto Human Rights Watch Film Festival where she was honoured in 2015, and is Chair of the Reykjavik International Film Festival.
Ms. Stephenson is a multi-award-winning film and media arts leader. She was appointed to the Order of Ontario in 2016, inducted to the Playback Hall of Fame, and has received the Havana Film Festival Award of Honour for her work with Latin American cinema and the Havana Film Festival. Her other accolades have included Toronto Women in Film & Television’s Lifetime Achievement Award; Toronto Eaton Centre’s Salute to the City Award for Outstanding Contribution; Toronto Arts Awards’ William Kilbourn Award for Lifetime Achievement; Women Who Make a Difference Award; and Human Rights Watch Tribute.
Ms. Stephenson has served on the board of the Toronto International Film Festival (TIFF) and the National Film Board of Canada
This Tribute – as well the previously announced Special Awards —will be presented during Canadian Screen Week (March 6 –12, 2017).
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About the Academy | www.academy.ca | The Academy of Canadian Cinema & Television is a national, non-profit, professional association dedicated to the promotion, recognition and celebration of exceptional achievements in Canadian film, television and digital media. Unifying industry professionals across Canada, the Academy is a vital force representing all screen-based industries.
About Canadian Screen Week and the Canadian Screen Awards
Canadian Screen Week celebrates excellence in media through a multi-platform, national program of events and celebrations culminating in the Canadian Screen Awards Broadcast Gala carried live on CBC, Sunday March 12th, 2017 at 8 pm (9 pm AT; 9:30 pm NT).