Pride Toronto’s Board of Directors held a jam-packed event at Buddies in Bad Times Theatre on January 21st to announce the appointment of Mathieu Chantelois as the new Executive Director of Pride Toronto, effective January 26, 2015. The event was hosted by Ryan G. Hinds, and attended by Pride staff, volunteers, media, and the general public who also were entertained with a performance by Dr. Draw, and the musical sounds of DJ Delicious.

Mathieu Chantelois has been a passionate advocate for Toronto’s LGBTTIQQ2SA* community for over 15 years. Having served as the Chair of the Board of Directors of The 519 Church Street Community Centre, he was involved in raising $6 million for the 519’s capital campaign. Mathieu was also Co-Chair and Spokesperson for “Spring for Life”, a fundraiser for the Canadian Foundation for AIDS Research (CANFAR), has sat on the Board of Montreal’s Divers/Cité for 10 years, and was the Honorary Chair of the Green Space Festival.

“We are thrilled to welcome Mathieu to the Pride Toronto family. We believe his skills and experience in the not-for-profit, cultural, and entertainment sectors will be key assets to the future of the organization,” said Board Co-Chair Alica Hall. “Mathieu has been an advocate for our communities for years and his achievements will help us grow as a team and organization.”

The Executive Director of Pride Toronto is responsible for leading the organization and delivering a world-class festival reflective of Toronto’s diverse LGBTTIQQ2SA* communities, as well as the implementation of a new long-term strategic plan.

“Pride Toronto has grown exponentially since its grassroots beginnings to the mega WorldPride celebrations we all experienced last summer. The new Executive Director will continue to work closely with a variety of not-for-profit, public, and private sector partners to forge new relationships and ensure we deliver a tangible legacy out of WorldPride 2014,” said Board Co-Chair Aaron GlynWilliams. “We are excited to see Mathieu taking on this role with all the passion and energy that he’s known for.”

“Together, we can create the most accessible, inclusive and innovative Pride celebration in the world,” said Chantelois. “Toronto is a city that shows the world how to be successful while celebrating diversity. It’s a true honor for me to lead a festival and political demonstration which has such a huge social impact.” He also informed his husband in the audience that he would see him in 148 days, alluding to the start date of the festival this year.

A Montreal native, Mathieu moved to Toronto in the year 2000 as a cast member on U8TV: The Lofters. Broadcasted online and on Life Network, The Lofters was the longest-running reality TV show in history. He also created, hosted, and co-produced SoGay TV, the first original series aired on PrideVision TV, and hosted ReadOut and COVERguy on OUTtv. He frequently appears on CBC’s Francophone radio broadcaster, Radio-Canada, covering a wide range of social, cultural and political affairs. Mathieu has published over a thousand stories in French and English entertainment magazines. With a Master’s Degree in Journalism from Carleton University, he has also completed two years of his PhD in Sociology of Communications from l’UQÀM in Montreal.

Previously the National Director of Marketing and Communications for the Boys and Girl Clubs of Canada, and Editor-in-Chief of Le magazine Cineplex, Mathieu has a breadth of experience and expertise that will help continue to shape a successful future for Pride Toronto.

About Pride Toronto

Pride Toronto is the not-for-profit organization that hosts Toronto’s annual Pride Week festival. Pride Toronto exists to celebrate the history, courage, diversity, and future of the LGBTTIQQ2SA* communities. Toronto’s Pride Week festival is one of the leading cultural events in the world. It is the third largest Pride celebration in the world and the largest in North America. The theme for 2015 is “Get Out and Play”, and takes place with events across the city from June 19th to 28th.

About the Author

Bryen Dunn is a freelance journalist with a focus on travel, lifestyle, entertainment and hospitality. He has an extensive portfolio of celebrity interviews with musicians, actors and other public personalities. He enjoys discovering delicious eats, tasting spirited treats, and being mesmerized by musical beats.