Akoulina Connell, Executive Director
Akoulina grew up in Sussex, N.B., did her B.A. in English literature at St.F.X., a year of the Interior Design program at Ryerson, and then an M.A. in English Literature at McGill. Prior to taking the Executive Director post at artsnb, she was Managing Editor at Goose Lane Editions, and has a background in communications for the Federal government, with career sidebars in marketing and IT. When she isn’t in the office or on the road on artsnb business, she is a dedicated arts and soccer mom. Writing and time outdoors are also high on her priority list.
Vanessa Moeller, Deputy Director
Vanessa Moeller is the Deputy Director of the New Brunswick Arts Board by day and a word choreographer by night. Her poetry and fiction have appeared in numerous periodicals and her first poetry collection, Our Extraordinary Monsters, was published by Signature Editions in 2009. She completed her BA, BEd (English and Arts Education) and MA in creative writing at the University of New Brunswick.
Joss Richer, Program Officer
Originally from Montreal, Joss and his family made Fredericton their home 20 years ago. A visual artist with a particular interest in drawing and sculpture, he has taught art to children, adults, and seniors for the University of New Brunswick and the Beaverbrook Art Gallery, and continues to teach drawing classes through the continuing education program at the NB College of Craft and Design. Joss has served on the board of Gallery Connexion as treasurer and chair of the selection committee, and has also chaired the exhibition committee at the Charlotte Street Arts Centre. Prior to joining artsnb, he worked for UNB for over 15 years, initially as webmaster, and more recently as manager of UNB Online. Joss holds a B.Sc. from the Université de Sherbrooke, and an M.Sc. and Ph.D. from the University of Guelph.
Nathalie Rayne, Marketing, Communications and Translation Specialist
Nathalie Rayne is the Marketing, Communications and Translation Specialist for artsnb. She received her B.A. at the University of New Brunswick. She then received a certificate in Television Production from Algonquin College in Ottawa, where she made a documentary produced by the NFB which aired on CBC. She is a freelance video editor and spends her free time in various editing suites in and around Fredericton. She enjoys working on short films, which tell New Brunswick Stories, with her husband Tim. In 2011 she won the excellence in editing award at the Silver Wave Film Festival for the short film Hold Fast.
Justine Koroscil, Director of Administration
Justine Koroscil is from Grand Falls, NB and has recently graduated with a Bachelor of Music-Voice from Mount Allison University. Earlier this year she was invited to be one of the leading roles in Université de Moncton’s Opera production of Cendrillon by Jules Massenet. She actively participates in numerous music festivals in both non-classical and classical genres. Before pursuing studies in classical voice, Justine was a finalist in three editions of the Tremplin music festival in Dégelis, Québec and the laureate of the Trois-Pistoles en chansons music festival in Québec (2007). She has also been the opening act to a few artists from the region including, Jean-François Breau and Danny Boudreau. Justine hopes to pursue studies in Arts Management all the while continuing to develop herself as a singer and focus on songwriting, drawing inspiration in her Acadian and Ukrainian heritage.
Katie Nicholas, Aboriginal Outreach Officer
Katie is the Aboriginal Outreach Officer for artsnb. She is from Tobique First Nation located in Northern New Brunswick. She is a graduate of the New Brunswick College of Craft and Design and holds a diploma in Aboriginal Visual Arts with a major in Traditional Aboriginal Ash Basketry. She will be returning to NBCCD in the fall to pursue a diploma in Advanced Graduate Studies. Katie is passionate about teaching and sharing the knowledge of her culture and traditional arts practice to enhance the awareness and growth of the First Nations culture and heritage. In addition to her work with ash basketry; Katie is also a photographer as well as a mixed media artist, working with acrylic and various mixed mediums. Aside from working for ArtsNB, she is a dedicated mom and is either with her family or in the studio working on her artistic practice and development.
Natalie Sappier, Aboriginal Outreach Officer
Natalie Sappier, artistically known as The Water Spirit is an Aboriginal Visual Artist from Tobique First Nation, New Brunswick. She completed her Diploma in Surface Design in 2005 and, in 2013, received her Diploma in Graduates Studies from the New Brunswick College of Craft and Design. She is known for her storytelling through symbolic stylized painting of her Wolastoq Heritage. She has public displays of work in her community and The University of New Brunswick, Fredericton.She has taken part in a group exhibition Ekpahak: Where the tides end at the Beaverbrook Art Gallery where she is also involved in ActionArt youth workshops.