The Nanaimo Arts Council provides opportunities for people to participate in creative activities through our programs and partnerships. We are the only arts organization in the community with a mandate to serve all forms of creative expression.

Catalyst for Creative Community

Space for creative growth and expression Connected and engaged creative community

Financial and organizational sustainability

Inclusivity & Community Responsibility & Accountability Growth & Learning

Fun & Creativity


Melanie Godel - President

Melanie Godel is an advocate for creative community in Nanaimo, BC. She has been on the board of the Nanaimo Arts Council for three years (President for two) and was heavily involved in the Strategic Planning Process that helped determine a new and exciting direction for the organization. Melanie graduated with a Bachelor in Visual Arts and Creative Writing from Vancouver Island University, works at the breathtaking Port Theatre, and has been active throughout the community supporting and promoting the arts through various personal and volunteer initiatives.

Contact Melanie:

Dennis McMahon - Vice President 

For Dennis, photography is a journey which has taught him to see the world through different eyes.  He is passionate in his belief that a vibrant Arts and Cultural community is essential to the fabric, character and economy of this city.

Jesse Woodward - Treasurer

Jesse has been a resident of Nanaimo since 2003 when he moved to Nanaimo for University. He works as a communication designer, and volunteers his time with non-profits. In his spare time, he loves to bake bread, ride his bike, and learn more about the world. He currently volunteers with the Nanaimo Arts Council as Treasurer of the Board.

Daniel Appell - Director at Large

Bryan Faubert - Director at Large
Bryan studied at the Nova Scotia University of Art and Design to obtain his BFA, Major in Studio Fine Arts, Minor in Drawing.  He has been showing since graduating in 2002 from Halifax to Vancouver Island, quite literally coast to coast and in-between.  He follows an interdisciplinary art practice focusing on street to studio, and vice-versa, working with a dichotomy of methods, materials, art practice and process in this exchange of art forums. For Bryan, It’s all about "the ‘here’ and ‘now’…when things happen…under the aegis of the ‘now’, this is the rigour of the avant-garde."

Anna Lyman - Director at Large

Anna is a jazz musician, vocalist and teacher. From 1994 to 1995, she worked for Okanagan College as a Community Liaison Committee member and chairperson, authoring the campus vision statement. Anna has also worked as a computer database designer and manager, crafting PR mailings, and did fundraising for the Texada Jazz on the Rocks festival. After relocating to Nanaimo, she began both a ukulele circle and the Nanaimo Aloha Ukulele Festival.  She fosters two performing ukulele orchestras, arranging their music and rehearsing them weekly. Anna has two commercially available CDs, and performs on the radio and at

music festivals.

Dana S Smiley - Director at Large

Dana was born and raised in Vancouver, BC, moved to Vancouver Island in 1967 where she and her husband worked and raised their two children.  After retirement in 2000 Dana decided to try her hand at painting.  She started with watercolours and gradually included acrylics to her choice of mediums.  She has spent her life on the west coast so many of her paintings depict the coastal scene. Her paintings can be viewed at the Sandbar Cafe and Gallery in Qualicum Beach.  She has taken instructions from various artists, recently from  Patricia Banks and Dennis Brown. 


Crowd Colour by Grant Leier


Sarah Schmidt - Executive Director

Laurie MacMillan - Interim Communications Coordinator

Donna Kreisle - Administrative Assistant

Maggie Hinbest - Program Assistant (Summer Student 2016)



We acknowledge the financial assistance of the Province of British Columbia

As well as offering its own creative activities, The Nanaimo Arts Council collaborates with a number of local groups to help in their programming including:  


Nanaimo Ukulele Festival

Vancouver Island Children’s Bookfest


For almost fifty years NAC has played an integral part in the incubation and development of many of Nanaimo’s now autonomous organizations and events including the Port Theatre and the Nanaimo Conservatory of Music. NAC has worked hard to both support creators and develop audiences and is now actively involved in blurring the line between them.

charitable status #119050573 RR0001

"Nanaimo Arts Council acknowledges with gratitude and thanks  that we are on the traditional and unceded territory of the Snuneymuxw First Nation."

We acknowledge the financial assistance from

the Province of British Columbia.


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Contact Us

P.O. Box 401 Stn A

Nanaimo, BC V9R 5L3