Materials : Helga Stephenson



Photo Credit: Matt Forsythe

2015 | Human Rights Watch tribute to Helga Stephenson

2013 | CBC | Helga Stephenson on the 2013 Canadian Screen Awards Red Carpet

2015 | What She Said | Interview with Helga Stephenson


TORONTO | MONTREAL, February 25, 2016 – Powerhouse leader Helga Stephenson will be stepping down from her role as Chief Executive Officer of the Academy of Canadian Cinema & Television, it was announced today by Academy Chair Martin Katz. An executive search is now underway—Stephenson will remain as Academy CEO until this position is filled.

“Nobody could have done it better than Helga,” says Katz. “On behalf of the Academy Board, I thank Helga for setting the Academy on a new path and congratulate her on being inducted into Playback’s Canadian Film and Television Hall of Fame.”

Stephenson has been Academy CEO since May 2011 and spearheaded the merger of the Academy’s film, television and digital media awards into the Canadian Screen Awards. She created Canadian Screen Week, an event-filled calendar for both industry veterans and newcomers, with a distinctly new outreach program to the Canadian public. She greenlit the increasingly popular website (targeted to a younger demographic), and countless other outreach initiatives.

Stephenson says she is looking forward to more world travel and other new challenges, but is extremely pleased with the work she has done for the Academy and the entire Canadian screen industry. “On a personal note, it has been my honour and privilege to work with you over the past five years. My admiration for your passion, talent and creativity knows no bounds,” says Stephenson.




CEO, Academy of Canadian Cinema & Television

Helga Stephenson is CEO of the Academy of Canadian Cinema & Television which produces the Canadian Screen Awards and Canadian Screen Week. Co-founder of Human Rights Watch in Canada, Helga also serves as Chair of the Toronto Human Rights Watch Film Festival where she was honoured in 2015. Helga acts as Chair of the Reykjavik International Film Festival.

Helga is a multi-award-winning film and media arts leader having served as Executive Director of the Toronto International Film Festival (TIFF) and Chair of Viacom Canada. She also worked in communications for the Canada Council and the National Arts Centre. Her clients over the years include: AOL Time Warner, the Toronto Film Critics Awards, Telefilm Canada, Musée de Beaux Arts and the Canadian Film Centre.

Helga has served as Chair of the Toronto Downtown Jazz Festival and Co-Chair of Metro Toronto Round Table on Culture. She has advised the City of Toronto Mayor’s Economic Partnership Council and the Women’s Leadership Conference of the Americas.


Chef de la direction de l’Académie canadienne du cinéma et de la télévision

Helga Stephenson est chef de la direction de l’Académie canadienne du cinéma et de la télévision, qui produit les prix Écrans canadiens et la semaine du Canada à l’écran. Cofondatrice de Human Rights Watch au Canada, Helga préside également le Toronto Human Rights Watch Film Festival, où on l’a honorée en 2015, ainsi que le Festival international du film de Reykjavik.

Helga est une leader du cinéma et des arts médiatiques, gagnante de nombreux prix, qui a été directrice générale du Festival international du film de Toronto (TIFF) et présidente de Viacom Canada. Elle a en outre travaillé aux communications du Conseil des arts du Canada et du Centre national des Arts. Ses clients au fil des ans comptent notamment AOL Time Warner, les Toronto Film Critics Awards, Téléfilm Canada, le Musée des beaux-arts et le Centre canadien du film.

Helga a occupé le poste de présidente du Festival de jazz du centre-ville de Toronto et de coprésidente de la Metro Toronto Round Table on Culture. Elle a conseillé le Conseil de partenariat économique du maire de Toronto et la Women’s Leadership Conference of the Americas.


Past articles about Helga Stephenson
The Globe and Mail: As TIFF celebrates 40 years of movies, scandals and politics, we look at how it all began
National Post: TIFF: An oral history
The Globe and Mail: Human Rights Watch festival: Film fodder for the collective conscience
The Toronto Star: Helga Stephenson honoured for work with Human Rights Watch
Digital Journal: Review: Closing films at human rights watch fest about improving life
Diplomatic Courier: Human rights through the lens. Film festival shines light on violations around the world
Ad Hoc News: CEO of Academy of Canadian Cinema & Television brought HRW to Canada
Monsters and Critics: Magali Simard on the Human Rights Watch Film Festival/