Kam Teo began his tenure as Executive Director of the Saskatchewan Book Awards (SBA) October 2019. While Kam is new to the position he is not new to the world of books – Kam is a life-long bibliophile! Before arriving at the SBA he served as branch manager of the Weyburn Public Library within the Southeast Regional Library system from 2005 to 2016. From 2017 til October 2019, Kam worked as a librarian at the Learning Resource Centre (aka library) at the RCMP Depot in Regina, SK. As such, the new ED has had experience working with and promoting Saskatchewan authors and publishers. Finally, Kam attained his BA from the University of Saskatchewan and his MA (both in history) and Masters of Library and Information Science degree from Western University.
Elena Bentley has lived in Saskatchewan all her life—with the exception of a two-year gap in which she attended the University of Toronto to complete her master’s degree in English literature. After returning home to Saskatchewan last year, she has focused on writing poetry. Elena has recently been published in untethered magazine. An amateur book reviewer, and a book-hoarding bibliophile, is looking to become more involved in, and contributing to, the literary scene in Saskatchewan. Elena Bentley currently lives just outside of Saskatoon.
Rochelle Smith is pleased to join the Saskatchewan Book Awards board of directors. Rochelle was born and raised in Saskatchewan. She has degrees from the University of Regina (BA English), University of Western Ontario (Master of Library Science), Queen’s University (Master of Urban and Regional Planning), and the University of Saskatchewan, Centre for the Study of Co-operatives (PhD). A long term employee of the Government of Saskatchewan, Rochelle devoted 39 years to public service, with time off for good behaviour to pursue her education and lifelong learning goals. Most of her time with the province was spent as a Senior Policy Analyst in regional economic, co-operative and community economic policy and program development. Rochelle was instrumental in developing the policy basis for Regional Economic Development Authorities and Enterprise Regions, as well as Neighbourhood Development Corporations. She has served on the board of directors of the Saskatoon Community Clinic and currently is on the board of the Balfour Condominium Corporation. Rochelle is now enjoying retirement, renovating her condo and singing with the U of R Concert Choir.
A graduate of the University of Regina with a BA in English, Margot grew up in a family of writers and has always loved books. She is the author of two romance novels. Before she switched her focus to writing, she held senior leadership roles in Marketing, Communications and Human Resources at SaskEnergy. As a volunteer, she has helped newcomers to Canada improve their English skills. She lives in Regina with her husband and golden retriever.
Emily Dmyterko is the current representative for SaskBooks, one of the founding members of the Saskatchewan Book Awards. She is also the current Treasurer of the Saskatchewan Book Awards. Emily is the Communications Officer for SaskBooks, having started as an Intern in 2019. She graduated from the University of Regina with a degree in Linguistics, focusing on Indigenous languages, and dabbled in poetry seminars on the side. In the past, she has worked at Chapters/Indigo and the Saskatchewan Book Awards. She’s also volunteered for the Canadian Linguistics Association, tutored undergrad Linguistics students, and run creative writing workshops. Emily lives in Regina.
Donna Woloshyn is delighted to join the Saskatchewan Book Awards board of directors. This marks an exciting new challenge for Donna after having recently completed her term as president of the Friends of the Royal Saskatchewan Museum. Born and educated in the province, Donna has degrees from the University of Saskatchewan (B.A. and B. Ed.) and a Post Graduate Diploma in Vocational Technical Education from the University of Regina. Donna’s early career as a teacher and adult educator in northern Saskatchewan, the NWT and Nunavut laid the foundation for her love of the North and working together with Indigenous communities. In 1984 she moved to Regina where she has been working with the provincial government for over 30 years as a program manager and policy analyst primarily responsible for family and community literacy programming. Having worked on a variety of pan-Canadian literacy initiatives that have taken her to nearly every province and territory, Donna brings with her a wealth of knowledge and experience. Donna has also served on several national boards (e.g., Canadian Association of Adult Education, TESL Canada and the Centre for Canadian Language Benchmarks) and chaired provincial and national conferences. Donna has one daughter who is a journalist with CBC News.
Joe Couture works in communications, research and policy for the Saskatchewan School Boards Association. His experience includes working for the Saskatoon StarPhoenix, Regina Leader-Post and Vancouver Province daily newspapers. He has written about a wide variety of topics, including as the provincial Legislative Bureau reporter in Saskatchewan. Joe has also worked as a professional researcher for full-service market research firms based in Regina and Vancouver. Joe earned his undergraduate degree at the University of Regina’s School of Journalism, where he has since returned to teach courses as a sessional lecturer. He has a Master of Public Administration degree from the Johnson Shoyama Graduate School of Public Policy.
Zoé Beaulieu Prpick
Zoé is the secretary of the Saskatchewan Book Awards board. Zoé has just completed her Master's in Creative Writing English at the University of Regina, a historical novel. She also works as a book editor and translator. She lives in Regina with her family.
Board Member/Sask Writers' Guild Representative
For over five decades Jack Walton has combined his work in culture and the arts with that of being a volunteer advocate for their development and sustainability. He is a writer and performer of music and literature, consultant in Board Development and Governance in the non-profit sector, a festival designer/producer and a documentary filmmaker. Community leadership in the cultural sector includes founding Chair of Northern Saskatchewan International Children’s Festival and SaskFilm, past Chair of Heritage Saskatchewan, Saskatchewan Festivals & Events,Saskatchewan Motion Picture Association, the Saskatchewan Museum Funding Review, and Saskatchewan Regional Tourism Funding Review. He is a past Director of SaskCulture, Saskatchewan Arts Alliance and Tourism Saskatchewan with a focus on Cultural Tourism. Nationally Jack has served as a Director of the Canadian Conference of the Arts, and the Canadian Association of Festivals and Events. Jack is currently President of the Saskatchewan Writers Guild, The Saskatchewan Writers Guild Foundation, the Saskatoon Blues Society, and Hope Cancer Help Centre, a grassroots Saskatoon organization supporting individuals and families with direct financial assistance to off set the cost of cancer treatment and beyond.
Board Member/Saskatchewan Library Association Representative
Carla Flengeris is the Library Coordinator at Luther College, University of Regina and has been a member of the Saskatchewan Library Association for over ten years. She holds a Master’s degree in English from the University of Regina. Although her work in an academic library has her teaching and promoting information and media literacy skills to adults (university students), her spare time is spent as an active advocate for early literacy and she volunteers with numerous children’s organizations and early childhood education programs. She lives in Regina with her husband and two children.
Shelley joined the SBA board as a member-at-large in October of 2019. Typical of many Saskatchewan ‘folk’ her appreciation for the Saskatchewan community of authors is based on a rural upbringing that included the sharing of stories.
Shelley’s background includes an undergraduate degree from the University of Regina with bilingual mention, and a Masters degree from Gonzaga University. The focus of her thesis was to explore the relationship between narrative [storytelling] and engagement, so she is thrilled to be a part of an organization that celebrates our Saskatchewan storytellers. Shelley looks forward to contributing to the SBA board activities in the upcoming year. She lives in Regina with her husband and two sons.