Nova Scotia Masterworks Awards Foundation Promotional Video

Established by the Honourable Myra Freeman in 2005, the Lieutenant Governor of Nova Scotia Masterworks Arts Award recognizes excellence in all creative media and highlights works that have a strong connection to Nova Scotia in the context of national and international achievement.

The Masterworks Arts Award is the largest cultural award based in Nova Scotia, with up to $37,000 awarded annually. The Creators of up to five Finalist works receive $3,000, and the Creator(s) of one Winning work receive an additional $22,000, for a total of $25,000.

The Award is managed by the Nova Scotia Masterworks Awards Foundation.

Board of Directors


Ms. Gay Hauser, President Email Gay Hauser

Gay Hauser has worked as an actor, director, designer and general manager administrator in non-profit arts sector for 35 years. Currently a consultant for Strategic Arts Management, Gay has worked as the general manager of Live Art Dance Productions and as a founding member of Eastern Front Theatre and Mulgrave Road Theatre Co. Gay continues to perform annually in Symphony Nova Scotia’s The Nutcracker and currently serves as the managing producer of the annual event.

Gay has experience in theatre and dance presenting general management including audience development, board development, strategic planning, production budgeting, global budgeting, and multi-year budgeting, financial reporting, audit preparation, bookkeeping, grant writing, CTA contracting, payroll, including T4 and T4A preparation, charitable tax returns, sponsorship relations, special event coordination, donor relations, volunteer relations, customer relations and box office management.

Ms. Rilla Banks, Secretary Email Carolle Fernando

Rilla Banks is an associate lawyer with BOYNECLARKE LLP in Dartmouth, practicing primarily in civil litigation. Before pursuing her career in law, Rilla obtained her Bachelor of Music degree with a major in flute performance. Prior to her appointment to the Masterworks Foundation Board, Rilla participated on the board of the Halifax Music Co-op. Rilla is enthusiastic about maintaining her connection to the thriving arts community in Nova Scotia as a member of the Masterworks board.

Ms. Laura Taylor, Treasurer




Ms. Laurie Dalton

Dr. Laurie Dalton is Director/Curator of the Acadia University Art Gallery and Adjunct Professor, Dept. of History and Classics, Acadia University.  She brings over 15 years of multi-faceted museum and gallery experience, which includes a successful track record in curating, public programming, collections stewardship, and fiscal planning. This has been further supplemented by over 10 years of academic research and teaching in art history, museums and cultural studies.

She holds a Masters from Queen’s University, and a PhD from Carleton University. Her research is cross-disciplinary with a focus on museums, displays and audience within transnational frameworks.  A core interest for Laurie is the importance of cross-disciplinary initiatives and the central role that the arts can play in this process. She has led research teams and collaborated on projects that champion the transformative role of arts and the importance of interdisciplinary dialogue.

She is active in promoting the importance of the arts in Nova Scotian communities and currently serves on the Art in Public Spaces committee for the town of Wolfville and is a council member of the Creative Nova Scotia Leadership Council, which is a group that works to  provide advice and leadership to government through the Department of Communities, Culture and Heritage.

Ms. Fiona Diamond

Fiona has been a principal in Brookes Diamond Productions since its incorporation in 1977. In that capacity she has been show producer, concert promoter, project manager, and marketing director. She created and co-produced the long-running, nationally-televised Ha!ifax Comedy Festival, which she sold in 2007, and has promoted many East Coast tours such as Riverdance, Gordon Lightfoot, Measha Brueggergosman, Barra MacNeils, Bruce Cockburn and Bette MacDonald.

She has worked with the QEII Foundation bringing in such artists as Jerry Seinfeld, Paula Abdul, and Andrea Martin. She also represents comedians Bette MacDonald and Mark Critch (This Hour Has 22 Minutes). Fiona is co-producer of Nova Scotia’s spectacular musical production, DRUM! and is President of KA’NATA Productions Inc which develops 360° immersive Nova Scotia digital content and operates Sea Dome in partnership with the Maritime Museum of the Atlantic.

Volunteer roles include four years on the Executive of the Neptune Theatre Foundation Board of Directors; Board Member of the Life Network in Toronto, six years on the Creative Nova Scotia Leadership Council and Past President of Family Business Association – Atlantic.

Fiona and Brookes Diamond were named “Persons of the Year”, 2009 by the Halifax Chamber of Commerce for “their outstanding contribution to the quality of life in Halifax” and in 2012 were honoured to receive the Queen Elizabeth II Diamond Jubilee Medal in recognition for their contributions to Canada.  In 2015, Fiona and Brookes were named to the inaugural Casino Nova Scotia Music Hall of Fame.


Mr. Dustin Harvey

I am an artist who works hard to develop projects that speak both to me and others about the beauty found in a shared experience. Over the years I have invited people to slow dance with strangers in disused storefronts, to confess secrets to someone thousands of kilometres away through text message, and to immerse themselves in public locations and busy city streets from Aarhus, Denmark to Whitehorse, Yukon Territory. My writing has been published by Canadian Theatre Review (Issues 126, 134, and 158), as well as the chapter entitled ‘Make What You Need’ in the scholarly book ‘In Defence Of Theatre: Aesthetic Practices and Social Interventions’ edited by Dr. Kathleen Gallagher and Dr. Barry Freeman published by University Toronto Press in 2016. In 2016, I was part of a national cohort at the Banff Centre For Arts and Creativity in Alberta called New Fundamentals: Leadership For the Creative Ecology. I am currently a member of ArtsHalifax-an advisory committee to the City of Halifax. I am also on the national advisory board of Canadian Theatre Review. Most of the work I do is collaborative in some way, and connected to XOSECRET (Secret Theatre, Halifax), which is a project-led initiative that focuses on principles of creativity, technology and public space related to new practices emerging within the contemporary theatre milieu. I trained in Theatre at Acadia University in Wolfville, and Acting at the London Academy of Music and Dramatic Art in England.


Ms. Lena Turofsky

Lena Turofsky graduated with a Bachelor of Music in Performance from the University of Toronto. She moved to Halifax in 1978 to play with the Atlantic Symphony. A founding member of Symphony Nova Scotia, Lena is currently Assistant Principal Bass. She plays in the Anne of Green Gables orchestra at the Confederation Centre in Charlottetown during the summer months. Lena has been involved in much of the music in Nova Scotia for many years, playing in the Scotia Festival of Music, at Lunenburg Academy, with New Brunswick and PEI Symphonies, Rhapsody Quintet, and more. Lena has also been an educator with her own Bass studio and teaching Bass at the Halifax Regional School Board for 15 years. She was thrilled to organize two job swaps to the Adelaide Symphony in Australia.

Lena is interested in arts management. She was an apprentice at Debut Atlantic under Dean Brinton and is a current volunteer on the Finance committee and Board of Directors of Symphony Nova Scotia. Past board appointments include the Nova Scotia Youth Orchestra and suddenlyLISTEN music.

Honourary Board Members

Mr. Wayne Boucher, RCA, Visual Artist

Mr. Ronald Bourgeois, Acadian Performing Artist/Television Producer/Arts Advocate

Ms. Judith Campbell, Public Relations and Promotions Consultant

Mrs. Joan Craig, CM, Craig Foundation Trustee, Autism Nova Scotia Founder

The Honourable Myra A. Freeman, CM, ONS,MSM, Former Lieutenant Governor of Nova Scotia

Mr. Robert E. Geraghty

Mr. Timothy C. Matthews, QC., lawyer

Mr. Gregory Silver, B.Des.,CGD,FGDC, Design Consultant, St. Peter’s, Cape Breton

Past Board Members

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