From left to right Mary Rozsa de Coquet, Mayor Jyoti Gondek, Kadra Yusuf, Simon Mallett.
The Rozsa Foundation Emerging Arts Manager Award aims to acknowledge the exceptional contributions of an arts manager who is in the early stages of their career yet has already made a significant impact within and beyond their organization. This year, Kadra Yusuf, the Artistic Director at EMMEDIA, has been presented with this award. The 2023 award is among the seven Cultural Leaders Legacy Arts Awards, presented at the Celebration for the Arts, hosted by Mayor Gondek on October 18, 2023.
In a video interview announcing this year’s recipient, Rozsa Foundation Executive Director Simon Mallett spoke about Kadra’s accomplishments – “In her role as Artistic Director at EMMEDIA, Kadra has demonstrated her commitment to diversity and inclusion, introduced innovative programs, and fostered meaningful collaborations. Her efforts have not only made a significant impact but have also set the stage for future success for both herself and the organization. Her dedication to the arts sector and her substantial contributions to the Calgary arts community make her an exceptionally deserving recipient of this award.”
Since becoming the Artistic Director at EMMEDIA, Kadra has significantly diversified the organization, both internally and externally. She has ensured that the organization's staff and audiences better reflect the community they serve. Kadra consistently asks the important question, "Who are we not reaching?" and recognizes her responsibility to actively reach out to them. She has successfully cultivated a safe and respectful community where everyone feels welcome.
Kadra's commitment to showcasing diverse perspectives is evident in EMMEDIA's programming, such as "Black to the Future." Additionally, she has forged robust collaborations with other artist-run organizations across the prairie region, enhancing the impact of EMMEDIA's work.
On behalf of the Board, the Rozsa Foundation Staff, and our valued partners, we extend our heartfelt congratulations to Kadra.