Patti Pon

Calgary Arts Development's President & CEO champions the city's arts sector

In addition to being the President and CEO of Calgary Arts Development, Patti Pon also sits on boards and steering committees for many different organizations — a true arts champion in our community. She says at the heart of it, when all is said and done, she hopes to contribute to leaving this place in a better state than when she came into it.

“And that’s a really complex thing to say in 2023 when I think about the lifetime and the many years I’ve had on this Earth so far, and I’m not so sure my generation and some of the others closest to me have done such a good job of making this a better place than how they found it,” Pon adds. “And so we are living in a time right now where all kinds of things, whether it’s a pandemic or an economic downturn or a 100-year flood or the wildfires or the extreme heat waves or drought or whatever, it has so changed the way we live our lives today.

“And what I hope I am is somebody who is able to scan the horizon and see the world for what it is and then use whatever gifts or superpowers I might have to to really try and make it better. And being in my role here at Calgary Arts Development and any role that I play, whether it’s as a volunteer or otherwise, always I bring the arts with me into those conversations and around that table.”

Pon believes artists teach creativity, humility, curiosity and generosity. “And those are all things that I’ve learned from artists,” she says. “And it’s a wonderful gift to bring into this world right now. And I think our world really needs it.”

Tune into this week’s Storytelling Podcast to hear more from Patti Pon about practising creativity, the importance of artists as storytellers, and what she and Calgary Arts Development are working on behind the scenes.

About The Storytelling Podcast

Sharing diverse stories of creativity in our city, The Storytelling Podcast shines a spotlight on artists and projects that connect Calgarians to the arts. Part of The Storytelling Project, this series raises awareness about Calgarians who, by living creative lives, are making Calgary a better city, affecting positive change and enriching others’ lives.

Have a story to share? Email us at

Living a Creative Life Logo