Behind the Scenes with AMA Volunteers: November 2022

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Behind the Scenes:

Showcasing Our Volunteer Community

It takes a vibrant village of volunteers to run AMA Toronto. Since I joined the organization in 2010, our ambitions and scope have expanded immensely and so has our volunteer community. Our volunteers come from many backgrounds and industries. They vary in age and experience: from students and early stage marketers to senior professionals and marketing legends. Some of our volunteers are familiar faces within our community. However, the volunteers you see and hear from regularly are just the tip of the iceberg. Many others play an essential role behind the scenes or volunteer their talents for specific purposes. Here’s an introduction to some of the volunteers who have helped turn AMA Toronto into an award-winning chapter.

Our Board of Directors 

Our Board consists of 18 hardworking volunteers who roll up their sleeves to get things done. It includes an Executive Committee currently comprised of the President (Barbara Boyd), President-Elect (Santo Ligotti), 5 past presidents (Craig Lund, Debbie Bolton, Matt Chong, Miglena Nikolova and Tina Portillo) and our VP Finance (Heather Purcell). Thirteen board VPs run 12 committees: Business Development/Partnership (Miglena Nikolova), Canada’s Marketing Hall of Legends (Jacob Kessler), Digital Marketing (Claudia Mayta), DEI (Christine Andrew), Events (Dawn Becker), International (Chris Stathousis), Leadership Excellence (Craig Lund), Marcom (Jessica Zuckier and Linda Antonacci), Membership (Oscar Rank), PR (Rob MacLean), Strategy and Insights (Darko Rakin), and Volunteers (Debbie Bolton).

Our Committee Volunteers

We also have more than 70 committee volunteers who work with our 12 teams to help run our chapter and our various programs. We could not exist without their passion and skills. Our monthly Rockstar recognition program was developed to help ensure recognition for some of these amazing team members and their contributions whether they are onstage or behind the curtain. Please read more about our Rockstars each month. 

Our Advisory Council

Our Advisory Council started over 10 years ago to help guide our then fledgling mentorship program. In 2020, we expanded our Advisory Council to provide advice and support to our Executive Team across all aspects of our organization. The Council currently includes: Co-Chair (Arthur Fleischmann) and outstanding senior marketers from various industries and backgrounds: Alan Middleton, Chantal Butler, David Pullara, Eric Tang, Fatima Israel, Gallant Law and Yasmin Pallan. We are very fortunate to have their support.

Our Mentors

October saw the launch of the 14th year of the Mentor Exchange mentoring program (now part of our Leadership Excellence programs). Approximately 30 new mentees were matched with senior volunteer mentors. In April we launched our 6th year of the Career Accelerator mentorship program for about 25 early-stage marketers who are working with accomplished mid-level marketers. This fall we’re rolling out our high value Executive Coaching program. Thanks to 10 highly respected, accredited professional coaches we are now able to help ambitious marketers achieve their specific career and personal goals. 

Our Leadership Excellence programs (mentorship and executive coaching programs) depend on many seasoned marketers who commit their time and talents to support the marketing community. Several of this amazing group deserve special thanks. David Kincaid (former Advisory Council co-chair) and Alan Middleton (Advisory Council and author) have guided many grateful mentees along their career paths but have also played critical roles in the evolution of our mentorship programs since their inception. Alumni mentors Andrea Graham and Bill Brown also inspired and helped launch our new Executive Coaching program. Our website lists some of our amazing volunteer mentors and executive coaches who pay it forward by sharing their knowledge and experience with future marketing leaders.

Our Event Speakers

Our learning events feature industry experts who volunteer to speak on various topics. For example, on November 2, Alan Middleton, moderated an excellent session on entrepreneurship. Speakers such as Bryan Pearson past CEO of Loyalty One, Ian Rosen, President and COO of Harry Rosen, Les Mandelbaum, Co-founder of Umbra, and Sharifa Khan Founder, President and CEO of Balmoral Multicultural Marketing, shared stories, insights and advice from their experiences in the trenches of entrepreneurial companies. In December, our Agency Panel will feature outstanding agency leaders providing their perspectives on their industries.

Our Author

Alan Middleton has worked with Craig Lund and Miglena Nikolova in a new AMA initiative to produce helpful books for marketers on key topics. In 2021, Alan authored Mentorship Matters Now More Than Ever! And in 2022 we have just launched Marketing Matters For Small and Medium Enterprises Now More Than Ever! Alan has a third book planned for 2024 that will address the importance of reputation management for organizations.

To Learn More

Many thanks to the more than 100 volunteers who help AMA Toronto empower the leadership potential of Canadian marketers each year. Please check our website regularly to view our upcoming events, such as our annual Agency Panel in December. You can also learn more about volunteer opportunities and our Leadership Excellence programs. We look forward to seeing you soon.  

October Rockstars

This month we’d like to highlight the achievements of three high impact volunteers: Elvina Bulatova, Jason Hui and Jermaine Wellington. Thank you for your passion and commitment!

Elvina Bulatova
Director, PR

Since joining the PR team in 2021, Elvina has continually delivered results that are helping to elevate the AMA Toronto brand and communicate its core values. From landing podcast interviews to producing impactful and eye-catching designs, Elvina is rocking it. The visuals she created for Small Business Month and for the upcoming blog series “Leadership Thinking” are top-shelf and set new standards for the chapter. She clearly “gets it,” and is a pleasure to collaborate and work with. Elvina is a Senior Communications and Design Associate with Sustainanalytics. She has a Masters in Politics and Security and a BA in International Journalism.

Jason Hui
Manager, Lifecycle Marketing

Jason has been a rockstar since he joined the Membership team as a Manager of Lifecycle Marketing a few months ago. He’s actively taken control of our flows and data within Mail Chimp, and has proposed ways to jump-start our Peer to Peer networking program. He has also kick-started conversations with our international Support Centre to procure survey data from our member base. He also volunteered to become part of AMA Toronto’s Diversity, Equity and Inclusion sub-committee. Jason is the Founder and Lead Strategist for Taken Digital. He has a MBA in Marketing and Strategy and a BSc in Electrical Engineering.

Jermaine Wellington
Director, Onboarding

Jermaine has been an important member of the Volunteer Team since 2019. He has taken on an increasingly important role in onboarding each new volunteer that joins AMA. He sets up emails and shared drive access, adds volunteers to our database and provides info on our Slack platform. He has also developed a new volunteer recruitment tracking system for the team. He provided important input to create AMA Toronto’s DEI Commitment statement. Jermaine is a Senior Digital and Marketing Strategist with Social Currency Marketing. He has a BA in Human Resources Management and a diploma in Business Marketing and Management from Humber College.

Join our volunteer team


Are you an enthusiastic marketer who’s interested in meeting great people, gaining leadership experience and raising your profile in the marketing community? We’re looking for:

  • A PR media relations pro
  • Experienced in-person and virtual event directors
  • Project and Program managers
  • An executive level research professional
  • A Nominee Research Manager
  • And more…

Please check out our job postings at  or contact me at

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