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July 4, 2014

Staff Profile – Diane Cook, Development Manager

Diane Cook
How long have you worked at Soulpepper and tell us a little bit about what your job consisted of lately.

I’ve been a member of Soulpepper’s administrative family since February 2012. Golly, where did the last 2.5 years go?!

As a part of the Development Team, I am responsible for establishing and strengthening meaningful relationships amongst our philanthropic community. I endeavor to ensure individual donors, private foundations, and corporate partners feel connected to our work and understand the impact of their generosity. We’re a thriving place because of their support!

Summer is a short, busy season for us fundraisers here at Soulpepper. In addition to the exciting slate of shows on-stage and the various events they entice, we’ve got a number of campaigns on the go and our annual fundraiser, Soulpepper at Play, brewing in the Fall.

I am currently engrossed in Soulpepper’s Top Women, an all-female, theatrically-minded charitable club. We’re rolling out an expanded program this season, featuring unique and enriching experiences for our members. Know any women that might be interested in this initiative? The more the merrier!

When you’re not at work, what are you doing?

If you catch me in the morning before work, I am likely channeling my inner narwhal, plunging into the pool at the YMCA on Grosevnor. I’ve always been a bit of a fish, but only recently learned the Flip Turn!

In the evenings, I split my time between a post-work boogie at the Extension Room, pacing in my kitchen whilst concocting an extensive packed lunch (the daily Tupperware Jenga tower by my desk is a testament to my mania), and strolling around Cabbagetown, playing hide-and-seek with the local cat community (I am the default “it”).

My weekends are an eclectic hodgepodge, but typically include the following: Friday night hors d’oeuvres and work-week debrief with my main fella, a morning hunt for French pastries (kouign-amann or pain aux raisins are my current northern stars), an Ottolenghi or Keller-inspired feast with friends (with aforementioned fella at the helm), sisterly mischief, and daily meditation (so I don’t miss a moment).

What do you love about working at Soulpepper?

Well, my ‘office’ includes an exposed brick-wall and timber beams. And my leaders are kind, personable, and inspire a spirited work force. Every Soulpepper performance is memorable and the artists here, the ones I pass by numerous times a day, are the most talented in the country. What’s more, creativity and big-thinking are given the conditions to blossom. Sounds tops, yeah?!

Perhaps most importantly, we’re a harmonious lot of weirdos – and I say that with the deepest affection! The anthropologist in me is ceaselessly curious, and my colleagues offer ample intrigue to satisfy my wonder. And when you’re in the midst of a long winter and your tasks seem endless, heavy days are made light by spontaneous song, impromptu accents, scene re-enactments, and even kittens hidden in your inbox.

What’s not to love?!

Photo: Nathan Kelly