Director, Corporate Affairs
Director of Education
Media Education Specialist
Diane van Rens
Marketing and Communications Manager
A former English Language Arts teacher, Jane first joined MediaSmarts in 1995. As Director of Education, Jane developed many of its award-winning media education resources and programs and has promoted media education extensively through national and international speaking engagements. In 2005, Jane left MediaSmarts to work for Ontario’s Provincial Centre of Excellence for Child and Youth Mental Health at CHEO. She returned to MediaSmarts with a wealth of knowledge of the child and youth health and mental health sectors, expertise in youth engagement and experience working in a knowledge exchange environment.
Cathy has worked with the MediaSmarts since its inception in 1995. As a senior staff member she has been responsible for overseeing the ongoing national research project Young Canadians in a Wired World. As an expert in the area of children’s use of the Internet, Cathy has presented extensively at international conferences, facilitated Internet literacy workshops across Canada, and participated in task forces on issues related to the Internet. With a background in film studies, Cathy’s previous career was in the film and television industry as a news and current affairs producer. She was also the founder and co-director of Ottawa’s first children’s film festival.
Lynn provides consultation on strategic policy, planning and marketing within the areas of operations, sponsorship, membership and finance. In addition, she directs and manages licensing of MediaSmarts’ educational resources. Lynn brings a diverse range of skills, including marketing, communications, finance and administration, developed while working in the not-for-profit, film and television, and international development sectors.
Matthew Johnson is the Director of Education for MediaSmarts, Canada’s center for digital and media literacy. He is the designer of the comprehensive digital literacy tutorials Passport to the Internet (Grades 4-8) and MyWorld (Grades 9-12). He has contributed blogs and articles to websites and magazines around the world as well as presenting MediaSmarts’ materials on topics such as copyright, cyberbullying, body image and online hate to parents, journalists, academics and government bodies in Canada and around the world. Matthew is also an educator with nearly ten years’ experience teaching media education, film-making, English and special education among other subjects. A collection of his short fiction, Irregular Verbs and Other Stories, will be published in June of 2014.
As a French Education Specialist, Thierry is responsible for creating resources for educators, parents and community groups and for conducting outreach activities with French language schools, school boards, education ministries, and faculties of education and community organizations across Canada. Thierry is a former editor, translator and French language teacher and holds a bachelor’s and master’s degree in Communications from the University of Ottawa.
As Project Manager, Julia manages and coordinates the development of media education and awareness projects, initiatives and resources for MediaSmarts. Her responsibilities include assisting with project proposals, preparing and executing work plans, planning and maintaining budgets, and compiling reports. Julia previously worked for the University of Ottawa’s Faculty of Law, as administrator of On the Identity Trail, a large multi-disciplinary research project. She holds an Honours B.A. in History.
As Web Manager, Diane is responsible for the administration, development and maintenance of MediaSmarts’ websites. Prior to MediaSmarts, Diane worked as Web Manager for CARE, an international aid and development organization, and as a Web Designer on numerous website projects within both the non-profit and for-profit sectors. She brings with her over ten years of experience in website management, design, development and maintenance with training in design, multimedia and social media.
As Marketing and Communications Manager, Alex is responsible for communications, promotions, and media relations at MediaSmarts. Alex has extensive experience working in education, not-for-profit organizations, and technology companies. Alex is also an active volunteer and board member in the Ottawa community. He holds two business diplomas in management and marketing from Algonquin College.
As Office Administrator, Skye provides support to Staff and the Board of Directors as well as ensuring the smooth flow of operations for the organization. She brings to MediaSmarts over fifteen years of diverse administrative experience including in the film and television production industry. Skye previously worked as a Program Assistant for a non-profit international development organization.