Behind the Scenes with AMA Volunteers: October 2022

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Behind the Scenes: Bringing People Together Again

AMA Toronto, like many organizations, persevered through the pandemic by providing opportunities for people to meet online. But I must admit, it’s been more fun since we started meeting regularly in person again. There’s nothing like the happy and sometimes loud buzz of conversation to energize a fun and eclectic group of marketers. I ALWAYS meet wonderful people at our in-person events! So a big shout-out to the many volunteers who roll up their sleeves to make these events happen. 

In May we took the plunge and relaunched our first in-person Canada’s Marketing Hall of Legends (CMHOL) gala in more than 4 years. It was a fabulous event at Palais Royale. Our new and past legend attendees were inspiring and our master of ceremonies (and past legend) Tony Chapman was outstanding. And once again our volunteers demonstrated their commitment and passion on a very public stage. It takes a large group of volunteers to successfully host such an event. Special thanks to Barbara Boyd (now President), Jacob Kessler (VP CMHOL), Malaika Palmer (former VP Events), Miglena Nikolova (now VP Business Development), Nancy Marcus (Jury Chair and past legend), Rob Maclean (VP PR), Tina Portillo (now Past President) and numerous members of the CMHOL, Marcom, PR and Digital teams and more who worked behind the scenes to bring us back live!

And we definitely are back in the swing of in-person activities. In June, Craig Lund and his Leadership Excellence team of Jagriti Malhotra, Lindsay Tohana, Maggie Bolt and Victoria Bomben worked with Malaika Palmer, Marcom and on-site volunteers to host 2 very great events, our annual CMO Panel and our long-awaited Mentor Exchange Graduation Gala for 3 cohorts of mentees. 

Over the summer, we did a variety of informal get-togethers. The Volunteer team hosted a casual and fun event in July for our committee volunteers in my backyard. In July, August and September we also organized a Summer Series of informal Marketing Networking Group (MNG) events at 2 different pubs. Thank you Barbara Boyd, Craig Lund, Miglena Nikolova, Santo Ligotti and Shalini Jerath and many others for your help with these events. In October Craig Lund and the Leadership Excellence team started the annual kick-off for this year’s Mentor Exchange mentors and mentees with a launch party at KPMG. There are additional upcoming events and training scheduled for both Mentor Exchange and our new Executive Coaching program. 

Developing influential and supportive relationships is an extremely important part of a building a successful marketing career. AMA Toronto’s events, volunteer teams, and our mentoring programs are an easy and fun way to meet great people from a variety of backgrounds and industries who can help you develop professionally. Check our website regularly to view our upcoming events: our book launch on November 2 and 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.

September Rockstars

Our talented September Rockstars, Akshay, Arash and Shalini have made outstanding contributions to a variety of teams, AMA Toronto and our community. Thank you for your passion and commitment!

Akshay SR
Manager, Website

Akshay joined the Marcom team in 2022 but has had immediate impact. He has shown outstanding responsiveness and agility in updating AMA Toronto’s website. He has also demonstrated initiative in creating solutions and providing innovative ideas. Akshay is a Sales and Marketing professional with a decade of experience working with Fortune 500 companies in Retail, Plastics, Energy, Renewables & Environment. He has an MBA in International Business and working towards a Masters in Analytics from GeorgiaTech.

Arash Singh
Director, International

Once again, Arash was a phenomenal help with AMA Toronto’s annual international Chapter Excellence Award submission. His passion, dedication and experience from our previous award-winning submissions was clear as he took the initiative to help collect and organize all the prerequisite content. He also went above and beyond while working with Past President Tina Portillo to compile, edit, and submit the awards application with precision. Arash is a truly valuable volunteer on the AMA.
Arash is Group Marketing Director at Venturepark and acts as marketing head for Arlene Dickinson’s start-ups. He’s a seasoned marketing with more than 14 years experience, including a decade with Coca-Cola in Asia. He has a MBA from Indian Institute of Management and a Bachelor of Mechanical Engineering.

Shalini Jerath
Director, Member Networking Group (MNG) Events

Shalini has been recently promoted to run all AMA Toronto’s MNG events. Since joining the Membership team about 2 years ago, she has excelled in her various roles with both the Membership and Events teams, demonstrating outstanding agility, energy and event planning and management skills. Shalini is an enthusiastic, committed and talented team player and leader who gets things done efficiently and well.
Shalini is a Marketing Manager at eSSENTIAL Accessibility. She has more than 15 years experience in marketing in India, Singapore and Canada. She has a Masters Marketing/Marketing Management from Middlesex University.

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
  • An executive level accounting professional (CPA preferred)
  • Experienced in-person and virtual event directors
  • Accomplished content writers
  • An executive level research professional
  • Project managers
  • And more…

Please check out our job postings at  or contact me at

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