SEPTEMBER 23, 2022, OTTAWA – The National Arts Centre Foundation is honoured that prominent volunteer and philanthropist Susan Glass of Winnipeg has been appointed as Chair of its Board, effective today.

“We are thrilled to welcome Susan Glass as Chair of the NAC Foundation,” said Adrian Burns, Chair of the NAC Board of Trustees. “With deep experience in fundraising and arts voluntarism, Susan is the ideal candidate to step into the role during a critical time for the performing arts in Canada.”

Ms. Glass and her husband Arni Thorsteinson are among the NAC Foundation’s most generous benefactors, having made leadership gifts to many artistic projects, including the NAC’s National Creation Fund, the Governor General’s Performing Arts Awards Gala, the Prairie Scene festival, the NAC Orchestra’s recent Truth in Our Time concert at Carnegie Hall, and many more.

"This is a time of daunting challenges but also great opportunity in Canada's performing arts milieu,” Ms. Glass said. “The NAC Foundation plays a crucial role in the facilitation of the NAC's strategic plan, and as such, it is an honour for me to play a leadership role in supporting that direction."



Susan Glass was appointed as a Member of the Order of Canada (2009) for her exemplary contribution to the life of the country. She is a recipient of the Queen’s Diamond Jubilee Medal (2012) and the co-recipient of the Outstanding Fundraiser of the Year Award (2008), as chosen by the Association of Fundraising Professionals in Manitoba. She has worked on behalf of major cultural institutions across the country, including the Banff Centre, the Shaw Festival, the Royal Winnipeg Ballet, the Winnipeg Art Gallery, and the Plug In Institute of Contemporary Art.

A graduate in Commerce from the University of Manitoba, Ms. Glass had a long and successful career with Air Canada in marketing and sales support with an emphasis on computer programming, systems design and project management.  She has served on the Boards of the National Arts Centre, the Banff Centre, the Royal Winnipeg Ballet, the University of Manitoba, the St. Boniface General Hospital, the Canadian Club of Winnipeg and the University of Manitoba Alumni.

Ms. Glass succeeds Janice O’Born, C.M. O.Ont, as the NAC Foundation Chair. During Ms. O’Born’s time as Chair, she and her husband Earle made one of the largest gifts ever to a Canadian performing arts organization, a $10M investment in artistic excellence at the NAC for years to come. Ms. O’Born led the Board during a time of crisis for the performing arts because of the pandemic, and thanks to her leadership and the generous support of thousands of donors from across Canada, the Foundation was able to make significant grants to the NAC to allow it to invest in artistic projects across the country.


The NAC Foundation raises funds to support the NAC’s strategic priorities in performance, creation and learning. Since its founding in 2000, donors to the Foundation have given more than $160 million to support artistic projects across Canada. The NAC Foundation Board represents a diverse group of arts volunteers and community leaders from across Canada.


The National Arts Centre (NAC) is Canada’s bilingual, multi-disciplinary home for the performing arts. The NAC presents, creates, produces, and co-produces performing arts programming in various streams—the NAC Orchestra, Dance, English Theatre, French Theatre, Indigenous Theatre, and Popular Music and Variety—and nurtures the next generation of audiences and artists from across Canada. The NAC is located in the National Capital Region on the unceded territory of the Algonquin Anishinabe Nation. 





Mary Gordon
Senior Advisor, Corporate Communications
National Arts Centre
(613) 601-3877