Western Canada Theatre welcomes Leslie Biles as Executive Director - Western Canada Theatre
The Board of Directors at Western Canada Theatre (WCT) are proud to introduce WCT’s new Executive Director, Leslie Biles. WCT's new Executive Director joins Artistic Director, James MacDonald, to lead Kamloops’ renowned professional theatre company through a new strategic plan.

“After an extensive executive national search, screening, and interview process, the Board of Directors at Western Canada Theatre is pleased to announce its successful recruitment of Leslie Biles to our Executive Director position,” says Beverley DeSantis, WCT Board President. “Leslie brings an abundance of experience, commitment, and vision to our theatre company and we know that the organization will thrive and evolve under her experienced leadership and collaborative stewardship.”

For over two decades, Leslie Biles has brought management expertise, a passion for business and the arts, and strong community commitment to theatres and festivals across Canada. Most recently, Leslie was the Vice President of Operations at Arts Commons in Calgary, Alberta—the third largest performing arts centre in Canada. During her tenure at Arts Commons, Leslie led a team responsible for venue booking and sales, client and patron services, production, facilities, and security. As the previous General Manager of Calgary’s Lunchbox Theatre, she raised $1.6 million and oversaw the development of a brand-new theatre facility. These significant achievements at Lunchbox, as well as her work as General Manager of Calgary’s 10-day GlobalFest Cultural and Fireworks Festival, earned Leslie a prestigious spot on Avenue Magazine’s 2010 Top 40 under 40 in Calgary list. Leslie also brings a vast knowledge of theatre production from prior positions as the Technical Director of Living Arts Centre (Mississauga, Ontario) and Alberta Theatre Projects (Calgary, Alberta).

A strong advocate for the power of community and giving back, Leslie’s previous volunteer roles have included: Mount Royal University Faculty of Arts Advisory Board member; Past President of the Rotary Club of Calgary East; member of the Calgary Stampede Horse Show and Grandstand Committees; Treasurer of Urban Curvz Theatre; Chair of the Trustees for IATSE Local 212; and Treasurer of Broad Minds Productions.

“I am delighted to join James MacDonald and the strong and successful team at Western Canada Theatre. WCT has a reputation for being a dynamic, inclusive, and sustainable company with a strong track record of creating outstanding new Indigenous and Canadian works. I am eager to build on these successes and advance the next phase of growth,” says Leslie Biles, WCT’s new Executive Director. “As we come out of these challenging times, I very much look forward to championing the relationship between arts, culture, and community and helping to contribute to the great quality of life in Kamloops.”

With extensive experience in venue operations, capital project management, and strategic and operational planning, Leslie joins Artistic Director, James MacDonald, as WCT implements a new organizational strategic plan. Together, Leslie and James will lead WCT’s three-year strategic plan with goals of advancing WCT’s vision, mission, and values; strengthening community engagement, partnerships, brand, and collaborations; and deepening WCT’s cultural impact in Kamloops and beyond. 

“On behalf of our team, we are excited to welcome Leslie to Kamloops and to Western Canada Theatre,” says James MacDonald, WCT’s Artistic Director. “She’s a passionate arts leader with a range of experiences that will help lead WCT as we launch our new Strategic Plan. Our 2023-2026 Strategic Plan is a dynamic initiative that will enhance opportunities for all Kamloopsians to participate in the performing arts in our growing cultural community. I look forward to working with Leslie as my leadership partner, and I know she will be a terrific addition to WCT, to the Kamloops arts community, and to our city.”

Leslie joins the WCT team starting November 21, 2022. On behalf of the Board and staff of WCT, please join us in welcoming Leslie to Kamloops.