Juniper Locilento appointed CEO of NAC Foundation

A smiling woman with brown wavy hair stands in front of a brick wall with her arms crossed.
Juniper Locilento © Virgil Knapp

The NAC has announced the appointment of Juniper Locilento as the next Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of the NAC Foundation, effective August 21, 2023. She succeeds Jayne Watson, who stepped down May 31, 2023, after 14 years in the position.

Juniper Locilento brings 20 years of experience in fundraising, philanthropy and non-profit leadership. She has led diverse teams and driven strategic initiatives that has resulted in revenues of over $200M for arts and culture, education, healthcare, and human services. Ms. ​Locilento is currently the Chief Development & Communications Officer for Community Food Centres Canada based in Toronto. She has served in key positions at the YMCA of Greater Toronto and Ketchum Canada. Her career journey also includes roles at several arts institutions, including Soulpepper Theatre Company and the Canadian Opera Company.

A champion for the performing arts

“Juniper Locilento’s deep experience, extensive relationship-building skills, strategic acumen, commitment to the arts, and inclusive leadership style make her an ideal person to lead the NAC Foundation into its next phase of growth and impact,” said Susan Glass, Chair of the NAC Foundation.

“The performing arts in Canada will have a champion in Juniper Locilento,” said Christopher Deacon. “She believes deeply in the value of the arts in everyday life, as an opportunity for reflection, discovery, and personal renewal. Her work at the NAC will support the voices and stories of Canadian artists onstage. Juniper’s appointment signals an exciting future for the Foundation and its mission to advance the arts in Canada.” 

Both Mr. Deacon and Ms. Glass were part of the committee that selected Ms. Locilento as the new Foundation CEO.

“I am honoured to join the National Arts Centre Foundation as the new CEO,” said Ms. Locilento, who expressed her commitment to the NAC’s mission. “The performing arts have been a central force in my life, matched only by my passion for philanthropy. I am excited to work with the incredible team at the NAC to inspire generosity, ignite change and ensure that the arts in Canada can flourish and transform lives.”

About Juniper Locilento 

Juniper Locilento, MPNL, CFRE brings 20 years of experience in fundraising, philanthropy, and non-profit leadership. Having generated over $200M in philanthropic revenues for arts and culture, education, healthcare, and human services, Juniper is committed to advancing philanthropy as a tool for change. She is currently the Chief Development & Communications Officer at Community Food Centres Canada.

In addition to her extensive professional background, Juniper brings a unique perspective rooted in her training as an opera singer. Her well-rounded expertise extends to her academic credentials, including a Graduate Diploma in Operatic Performance from the University of Toronto and a Master of Philanthropy & Non-Profit Leadership from Carleton University. She is an Instructor in the Fundraising Management Program at Toronto Metropolitan University and is recognized as a collaborative leader, mentor, and advocate for professional fundraising. 

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