Common Weal Community Arts Inc. is a provincial arts organization that collaboratively engages professional artists with communities to promote social change and cultural identity through creative expression.
Common Weal Community Arts, a provincial arts organization has announced the selection of Risa Payant as its new executive director.
“We are very pleased to announce this appointment,” reported Paul Wilson, Board Chair. “Risa will bring leadership and her deep sense of commitment to community arts engagement to this position. For nearly 15 years, Risa has been committed to supporting public engagement in the arts, and we are thrilled that she will be continuing this work in her role as Executive Director of Common Weal.”
“Building community is what drives me and I’m committed to the continued development of a vibrant, thriving, and diverse community for the people of Saskatchewan,” remarks Payant, “Authentic participation in the arts is a key component of strong societies and I’m eager to work with the Common Weal staff and Board of Directors on the delivery of programs designed to catalyze social change through the arts. I feel lucky to join an organization with such long- standing dedication to creating opportunities that foster understanding, inspire imagination, and support rich collaborations.”
Risa became involved in the arts through her studies at the University of British Columbia. There, she immersed herself in roles at the Vancouver Art Gallery, ArtsStarts in Schools, and the Morris and Helen Belkin Art Gallery with a keen interest in how arts organizations develop meaningful connections to the public. She has created programming for K-12 classrooms and community associations, in addition to collaborating with both Crayola and Nickelodeon through her work with Royal Caribbean Cruise Lines’ Adventure Ocean Youth Program. Since settling in Saskatchewan in 2008, she has continued to explore community based arts engagement through positions at the Regina Folk Festival, MacKenzie Art Gallery and, most recently, the Saskatchewan Arts Board. She currently sits on the Board of Directors of the Queen City Hub and Lumsden Beach Camp. Risa does important work championing the arts across sectors and connecting artists to broader community-building efforts in meaningful and mutually beneficial ways. She lives in Regina with daughters Gaia and Ever.